The EBRD is providing a loan of up to €55 million to Soufflet subsidiaries (Groupe Soufflet) associated with procurement, processing and sale of agricultural commodities across the Bank’s countries of operation. The proceeds of the loan will be used to finance seasonal working capital of the Group.
The transition impact of the Project is expected to stem from setting standards of corporate governance and business conduct through introducing a number of initiatives to strengthen its sustainable agricultural supply chain in the countries covered by the financing. The key initiatives involve improvement of energy and resource efficiency standards such as introduction of ISO 50001 certification, strengthening of Soufflet’s engagement with farmers and promotion of sustainable farming standards.
Providing seasonal working capital for Soufflet’s subsidiaries will give the necessary support to crop producers and address their ongoing needs to invest in seeds, fertilisers/chemicals and harvesting. Debt financing of working capital for Soufflet will allow the EBRD to maintain investments in primary agriculture by supporting the partnerships that the Group has with small and medium sized farms in the region. Commitment to long-term clients like Soufflet over the years has allowed the Bank to (i) encourage and support them in their innovation and investments in new products and practices, (ii) improve backward linkages with their suppliers and significantly increase geographic coverage and volume of collected crops, as well as (iii) deliver new skills and knowledge transfer to their subsidiaries and local farmers. Previous financing facilities with Soufflet through which all transition impact objectives were implemented demonstrate the Group’s commitment to these objectives. The EBRD will continue to provide the necessary liquidity support for its regional operations.
Groupe Soufflet is one of the leading European commodity processing and trading groups, with the main businesses comprised of malting, milling, agricultural input distribution, ingredients, trading, and baking.
Up to €55 million.
Environmental and social categorisation, impact, and mitigation
Categorised B (2014 ESP). Soufflet’s local subsidiaries in the EBRD region will be required to implement the corporate approach of Soufflet Group on environmental and social issues associated with their activities. The subsidiaries will also be required to comply with the Bank's Performance Requirements and national and applicable EU requirements for environment, health and safety. The Client will be required to continue to provide to the Bank an annual report on environmental and social issues.
For Category A projects, this section will need to be updated on an annual basis.
Ms. Marie-Ange Mathieu, Finance Director
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