The Danish Agribusiness Fund (DAF) will invest $12 million (m) in Coexca, the third-largest pork processor in Chile, to become one of the company’s largest shareholders.
The strategic partnership will see $40m invested over five years to double Coexca’s pork production and help build a new pig farm in Maule, central Chile.
Massive expansion plans
Coexca’s CEO Guillermo González told GlobalMeatNews the investment would create 350 jobs in Chile’s Maule region and help double exports to huge pork importers like China, Japan and South Korea.
González added the new 1,000-hectare pig farm would increase pig numbers from 7,500 to over 10,000.
In addition to the new farm, Coexca plans to design a new industrial-sized freezer and launch a second deboning work shift in 2018.
But its tie-up with DAF is hardly just economic. Denmark is widely regarded as the world’s top pork producer and Coexca hope to tap into this intelligence. González even told this site it would make his company stronger.
Leading agribusiness investors
“Denmark is the leading country in pork production [and DAF] will help us to be a better and stronger company. It is a big honour to join forces with them. I am very happy.”
Scotland-based JB Equity facilitated the deal via an equity raising and will net a 2% share in Coexca.
JB Equity’s chief investment officer Hamish Webb called DAF, which has invested in 18 pork businesses, one of the “most experienced pork investors in the world”.
In a prepared statement, Webb called the deal a “perfect union” between one of Chile’s top pork firms and one of Europe’s most experienced agribusiness investors.
The agreement was finalised in Denmark’s capital Copenhagen on Monday 22 May. It is the largest investment of its kind in the Chilean pork sector, according to JB Equity.
Chile consumes more pork on average than any other country in South America, with around 20kg eaten per person per year. The industry has also undergone massive expansion as the Chilean Pork Producers’ Association claims the sector has grown by over 800% in 30 years.
Thanks to a focus on trade, investment in modern technology, food safety and animal health, Chile is now the sixth-largest volume-based pork exporter in the world, according to JB Equity.
Coexca – at a glance
Coexca is Chile’s third-largest pork producer, with turnover last year of $85m and 500 staff. The company has offices in Asia, Europe and South America and exports meat to over 33 countries. DAF vice-president of Latin America Helle Bjerre said the business was “a good example of what cooperative and progressive farmers and processors can achieve by working with institutional investors who understand their industry”.