Puratos opens four new subsidiaries in Kenya, Ivory Coast, Ethiopia and Nigeria.

7 Jul 2020

Wherever it operates, Puratos - the global provider of solutions for bakery, patisserie and chocolate - offers ingredients, local support to create the best finished goods and training for its customers. With four new African subsidiaries the aim is to further establish local presence in key countries to strengthen the customer relationship, localise production as well as develop new products and concepts using local raw materials.

The accomplishment of years of business partnerships

Africa is the second largest continent in the world and will account for 1 in 4 of the world’s habitants by 2050. The continent remains a food importer, although it has 60% of the world’s uncultivated arable land[1]. By investing in local production factories, Puratos aims to reduce food imports and its ecological footprint while contributing to food security in Africa by capitalizing on the processing of local quality ingredients.

The subsidiaries are joint ventures with local partners in Kenya, Ivory Coast, Ethiopia and Nigeria and will help Puratos to further develop the booming African market.


“We are excited about opening new subsidiaries in Africa. These joint ventures will enable us to meet customers’ growing demands for high-quality products. We are proud to deepen our presence across the continent and to continue to invest in existing collaborations that have been so welcoming to us for more than two decades,” 
comments Olivier Tilkens, Regional Director Africa at Puratos.

Puratos Kenya activities started on January 1st, 2020 and will cover the Kenyan, Tanzanian, and Ugandan markets, taking over activities from Puratos’ previous distributor Papyrus. In order to capture growth opportunities in East Africa, other investments will follow, including a production facility for local manufacturing of patisserie and bakery ingredients in Kenya.

Puratos Nigeria will officially start its activities in July 2020. It is the result of a joint venture between Puratos and the Adegunwa family who is already very active in Nigeria in various food manufacturing and distribution activities. The upcoming production facility will ease the penetration of Puratos’ bakery, patisserie and chocolate range in the largest African market. Puratos Nigeria will also invest in an innovation centre which will train customers and develop innovative and tailormade products.

Puratos Ivory Coast is a joint venture in partnership with the shareholders of Sabimex who has been Puratos’ distributor for over 6 years in the country. It will locally produce Patisserie and Bakery powders. Because the country is the world’s largest producer of cocoa beans, it will also invest in a chocolate production facility. Puratos Ivory Coast will be in operation on April 1st, 2020.

Puratos officially incorporated a new company in Ethiopia on December 9, 2019. The company called Puratos Ethiopia and will cover the Ethiopia, Djibouti, Somalia and Eritrea markets. Puratos Ethiopia is a joint venture with Dachi Manufacturing PLC, an Ethiopian based company, already active in the manufacturing and distribution of bakery and patisserie ingredients in Ethiopia for 2 years.

[1] https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2016/01/how-africa-can-feed-the-world/

More nutritious food 

With Puratos’ growing presence in Africa, the company also wishes to develop applications and innovative ingredients that use local raw materials, improve the livelihood of local communities and contribute to the continent’s undernutrition problems.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), malnutrition - including undernutrition and nutritional deficiencies - are still major causes of death and disease, especially among vulnerable and socially disadvantaged people like women and children less than five years of age.

The trend towards an unhealthy diet rich in saturated fat, sugar and salt and poor in fruit and vegetables means that children in sub-Saharan Africa are overweight but malnourished because they are receiving more than enough calories but not enough necessary nutrients to grow into healthy adults.[2]

The fertile lands of Africa provide a bountiful supply of indigenous plants for food. Many fruits, types of grains and other best kept secret superfoods offer the potential of developing more nutritious solutions.

[2] https://www.afro.who.int/health-topics/nutrition

Puratos is currently taking part in a study with the University of Pretoria in South Africa to investigate the potential of indigenous African crops for African bakery and patisserie applications. The functionality and nutritional contribution of these new ingredients will be studied as well as the impact on sensorial sensation and the sustainable cultivation of the plant resources.” adds Olivier Tilkens, Regional Director Africa at Puratos.

More value for agricultural communities

Everywhere Puratos operates, the company gets close to people. By working side by side with local communities, Puratos aims to support and educate in order to build sustainable and profitable agricultural systems for all parties involved.

Cacao-Trace, Puratos’ sustainable cocoa sourcing programme, is a great example of this work. In combination with training and fair and predictable payments, Cacao-Trace cocoa farmers receive a premium price and a unique Chocolate Bonus of 10 euro cents for every kilo of chocolate sold.
This often adds up to the equivalent of an extra month’s salary for them.

More African countries will soon be included in this programme. 

Developing skills in Bakery, Patisserie and Chocolate

Over the past years the Bakery School Foundation opened four Bakery Schools across the globe (in India, Brasil, Mexico and South Africa), determined to give young people the skills they need to work in the bakery, patisserie and chocolate sectors.

“Puratos is proud to support the Bakery School Foundation. Not only does it help bring more qualified labour to the bakery sector, it also increases the product quality for consumers,” adds Daniel Malcorps, CEO of Puratos

The latest Bakery School opened in February 2019 in Gauteng, South Africa. By 2030 Puratos aspires to continuously enable 1.000 young people from developing countries to live their passion in one of its bakery schools.

Future investments to follow

Puratos has a clear roadmap for increasing its presence in Africa which will be concretised through the increase of production capacity and the opening of new subsidiaries in the coming years.

“We believe that we will become a true and complete business development partner for the African bakers, chocolatiers & pâtissiers. In the upcoming years, we will continue investing in strong local presence and excellent services, to offer a wider product range to our customers,” comments Peter Deriemaeker, Market Director Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa at Puratos