IFC invests $6.5m in Vietnam’s Pan Pacific

The International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, has invested $6.5 million to support Pan Pacific Corp’s expansion in the agricultural and food sector, a fundamental pillar of Vietnam’s economy that creates jobs and brings in substantial export revenues.

IFC’s equity investment represents about 5 per cent of the share capital of Pan Pacific, a Vietnamese agribusiness and food company established in 1993 and listed on the HCM City Stock Exchange. The financing will help the company realise its long-term strategic plan of acquiring and consolidating more agricultural and food businesses.

Pan Pacific will adopt good environmental and social practices in these businesses to ensure sustainability.

“Pan Pacific welcomes IFC among our group of extraordinary international and domestic investors,” said Michael Rosen, Pan Pacific’s CEO. “IFC’s support in building Pan Pacific’s food consumer business helps us move toward our goal of becoming a leading regional agriculture and food company.”

The agricultural sector, including fishery and forestry, is growing fast in Vietnam and accounts for more than 20 per cent of the country’s gross domestic product and 28 per cent of export revenues.

In addition to financing, IFC will help Pan Pacific pursue sustainable development by adopting IFC Performance Standards and the World Bank Group Environment, Health and Safety Guidelines. IFC will also help the corporation raise corporate-governance and business-transparency standards.

“Vietnam has a comparative advantage for primary agricultural production and IFC supports the sustainable development of this sector,” said Vipul Prakash, IFC’s Director of Client Services for East Asia and the Pacific. “Our financing and advice will help Pan Pacific set benchmarks for responsible production in line with international industry best practices in Vietnam.”

IFC has significantly scaled up its investments in agribusiness over the last few years. In fiscal 2014, IFC invested $4 billion across the agribusiness supply chain – from farm to retail – to help boost production, increase liquidity, improve logistics and distribution, and expand access to credit for small farmers.

At the end of the fiscal year, IFC’s overall agribusiness portfolio stood at $6.1 billion.

At the time of filing this report, PAN’s shares were being traded at VND40,500 ($1.9), up 0.2 per cent.