Horace Mann, US educational reformer
Undoubtedly, Kwale, just south of the world-renowned Mombasa beach, is a beautiful part of the world. This small area of Kenya, set inland from the white sand of Diani Beach, is mostly given over to agriculture, but many of the locals worked, before the Covid-19 pandemic hit, in the many hotels dotted around the shoreline. The decimation of the tourism industry in Kenya was devastating for the families who relied on their jobs in hospitality. Many of them were plunged into abject poverty, almost overnight.
Evolution Capital’s MD Nigel Cook was a frequent visitor to this special and relatively unknown region. He said, “As a team, we were horrified to hear how the pandemic had affected the people we’d met and grown to see as friends so dreadfully. We were determined to do something about it and so, working with a project manager, Kenneth Kariuki on the ground in Kwale, we set up a farm business so that the families could begin to rebuild their lives and have a sustainable income however badly the local economy was faring.”
And so, a farm was founded in early 2020. Land was prepared by Kenneth and his team, and a crop of tomatoes, maize, onions, and beans were planted and carefully cultivated before being transported by foot to Ukunda, the nearest local town for sale.
Nigel goes on, “We were delighted that the first crop was so bountiful, and we were able to share our business finance expertise with the farm management so that they had a good business plan and pricing strategy to help them literally grow their business.”
Two years on and the farm is thriving, so much so that the group in Kenya are now able to buy rather than rent their smallholding’s plot.
“We love to hear about the business in Kenya,” Nigel concludes “we are in regular communication with them and the whole team here at Evolution Capital is always keen to help them maximise their profits and build themselves better lives in their beautiful part of the world.”
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