Mtalimanja Holdings Limited - One of Malawi's unique investments

Mtalimanja Holdings Limited
Mtalimanja Holdings Limited (MHL) Rice plant in Nkhotakota.
A wholly indigenous entrepreneur, Napoleon Dzombe is a star business performer in Malawi, proving that the Malawi private sector has it after all.  
What makes Napoleon unique is that he is a social/impact investor, and his single deciding criterion for starting up any investment is the extent of its impact on the local communities.  While he vies for profit, he ensures that the communities benefit first.  Thus, he invests in transformational social projects that have a transformational impact on the surrounding communities.  Although he has a number of social investments, such as the facility to manufacture children’s soy concentrates which he distributes free of charge (funded by other returning investments), this brief article will showcase his rice-milling facility which is located in Nkhota-kota in the Central Region of Malawi, just next to Lake Malawi.  Incorporated as Mtalimanja Holdings Limited, the rice mill is a US$17,577,268.00 investment wholly financed by own equity. The mill may sound like a relatively small investment compared to figures heard in other countries, but in Malawi – particularly presently - this stands out to be a significant investment particularly considering the source of investment and the uniqueness of the investment.  

The project is located in a rice-growing region whose production is characterized by small-holder production on varied-sized land holdings of less than 0.2 of a hectare, and over a total area of about 400 hectares.  Mtalimanja Holdings, and specifically Napoleon, owns this land and mobilized a rice farming community of 7,000 smallholder farmers exclusively to grow rice.  He provides them the inputs, extension services and then will buy the rice from them (this is the first season of production – Mtalimanja will be launched this August but the farmers have already cultivated the fields).

The plant has a capacity of milling 200 tonnes of paddy per day.  Inasmuch as there has already been international demand for Mtalimanja rice, the promoter indicates that he has an obligation to satisfy the domestic market first before he considers the international market –  The company’s statements says it all: 
Vision Statement:  A satisfied farmer through business partnership, efficient delivery, and return on investment.
Mission Statement: MHL would like to take the lead in supporting the farmer through business partnership and increase agricultural productivity to satisfy the market demand both domestic and export thereby contributing to the social and economic development of [Malawi]

…a typical impact investment indeed!

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