Danish firm plans Kenya coffee roasting factory

Danish firm plans Kenya coffee roasting factory
Denmark’s largest supermarket chain, Coop Danmark, plans to set up a coffee roasting factory in Nairobi.

The East African director for the Danish Investment Fund (IFU) Henrik Frosig said the supermarket chain was looking to process Kenyan coffee and export it to all its more than 1,200 retail outlets.

“This is one project that we are excited about because we can add something to the local business community since the green coffee beans will be sourced locally as well as help Danish investors set up here in Kenya,” he said.

Mr Frosig noted that while the investment fund and the supermarket chain were yet to settle on a final location for the factory, they had identified two potential sites near the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport to make exportation easy.

“The factory will have a capacity of processing up to 4,000 tonnes in a year but production will start small at the onset, building up to the maximum capacity over the next couple of years,” he said.

Coop Danmark has already ordered a coffee roasting machine and a separate packaging machine, which are expected in the country mid next year.

The set up of the coffee roasting machine, expected to be complete by end of next year, is one of the many investments that the Danish fund has backed with capital.

IFU is one of the major financiers of the recently opened Radisson Blu Hotel in Upper Hill, contributing $10.5 million (about Sh1 billion) alongside three other Nordic private equity funds – SwedFund, FinnFund and Norfund.

The hotel is owned by local businessman Michael Kairu’s Elgon Road Developments and operated by the Rezidor Hotel Aps Danmark.

Denmark is looking to invest Sh15 billion in Kenya over the next five years, a big chunk of which will be used to support sustainable projects that promote creation of employment and green growth of the economy.

The Danish government will also invest in businesses that promote health and good governance across the country.

“Half of the budget will be dedicated to support Kenya’s transition to a green growth economy. We will also focus more on private sector cooperation between the two countries,” said Danish minister of foreign affairs Kristian Jensen.

Industrialisation principal secretary nominee Julius Korir said the biggest challenge to foreign investment had been acquisition of land.
“Counties… are now setting aside parcels of land for industrialisation purposes,” he said.