Management of State Owned Assets
The Agro-Investment Corporation manages the portfolio of investment properties previously managed by Agricultural Development Corporation. Any addition to or subtraction from the asset base and mode of operation will be based on investment decisions.
Investment Project Development
Agro-Invest is responsible for developing and implementing the business and investment models that support the Ministry’s policy and technological initiatives, utilizing its own asset base (including the resources of the Agricultural Support Services and Productive Projects Ltd.)
This area is more appropriately described as project incubation, in that Agro-Invest will manage investment projects until such time as they are considered to be sustainable, and can be handed over to external investors or operators
Recognizing that most business financing models have a debt and equity component, technical expertise will be available to design loan packages, working with such local institution as the Development Bank of Jamaica and external lending agencies. The equity portion will be mobilized through leveraging the Agro-Investor’s assets base to secure external capital.
Investor Identification and Facilitation
Agro-Invest will identify joint venture partners through packaging of products and actively securing equity partners, both locally and internationally. Agro-Invest will also partner with Jamaica Trade & and Invest (JAMPRO) in seeking joint venture partners, and assisting them in making their capital injection, optimising any incentives that are available to foster external investment.
Agro-Invest is responsible for planning, organising, directing and monitoring activities aimed at promoting, creating, developing and supporting viable and sustainable agricultural and agribusiness industries. The development of bankable business plans will be facilitated by us in a bid to assist small to medium sized type investors in accessing requisite funds. A part of our business facilitation services is to `walk’ the potential investor through all stages of the investment process, leading up to the implementation of the projects. Agro-Invest provides investment advice, business counselling; technical and marketing support services; and prepares business plans and proposals for submission to the appropriate institutions to access grant, loan or venture capital funding.
Loans facilitation to agricultural ventures is also a subsidiary function of Agro-Invest. Prospective clients, however, must undergo due diligence to ascertain the project’s viability. Loan eligibility will be determined by the:
- Screening required documentation
- Review of Project Proposals and Business Plans, as well as to recommend disbursement of loans where appropriate
- Provision of on-going monitoring of a portfolio of loan accounts for loan agreement compliance and;
- assessment of overall credit risk in the portfolio.
Agribusiness sub-sectors are constantly under review to identify possibilities for development and expansion of agri-business industries. To complement and stimulate growth in these targeted areas a cadre of staff, spanning the competencies of business plan development and marketing identification, will oversee the operation of specified implementable projects. Our Investment Officers will develop the plans, liaise with the other divisions to identify funding, and coordinate the execution of these plans.
The business approach utilized involves an assessment of the industry through consultation with stakeholders and development of a holistic plan for the total development of the industry. Based on competitiveness studies and national strategic importance there is an urgent need for further development of several industries, namely: hot pepper, honey, pineapple (and other fruits), castor bean, breadfruit, mangoes, papaya, West Indian Sea Island Cotton,cassava, sweet potato, small ruminants (sheep & goats) and cattle. Plans for other industries will be developed based on competitiveness studies, market research, or their strategic importance to the country e.g. for import substitution or food security.