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Feronia Inc. Announces US$2.5 Million Private Placement of Common Shares

/EINPresswire.com/ -- TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Dec 12, 2016) - Feronia Inc. ("Feronia" or the "Company") (TSX VENTURE:FRN) is pleased to announce that it has entered into subscription agreements for the private placement (the "Offering") of an aggregate of US$2.5 million of common shares ("Common Shares") of the Company at a price of Cdn.$0.22 per Common Share with CDC Group plc ("CDC"), the UK Government's Development Finance Institution, and the African Agriculture Fund, through its subsidiary Golden Oil Holdings Limited ("GOHL"). Today, CDC closed its subscription for US$1,800,000 by purchasing an aggregate of 10,770,545 Common Shares and the Company anticipates closing the GOHL subscription this week for US$700,000 through the issuance of 4,180,909 Common Shares.

Closing of the Offering is a condition to the second disbursement under the secured term facility agreement with a syndicate of European lenders consisting of four Development Finance Institutions ("DFIs") which the Company entered into in December 2015. Proceeds from the Offering shall be used for working capital purposes and, in particular, to provide expansion capital for the Company's subsidiaries in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Mr. Xavier de Carniere, Chief Executive Officer of Feronia, commented:

"By delivering operationally we reinforce our shareholders' confidence in our ability deliver on our business plan and get to a position where our destiny is in our own hands.

"Whilst the DRC is facing tough times from a political perspective, Feronia and its shareholders have the courage and determination to remain faithful to their mission of rebuilding this business. By doing so we are securing thousands of jobs, social services, local infrastructure, and a staple food for our communities and the entire country.

"We believe that our collective determination will lead to success and that success will be a beacon that other like-minded individuals and organizations can follow to bring additional investments of energy, determination, and capital into the DRC, which will benefit both the country and its people."

Pursuant to Multilateral Instrument 61-101 - Protection of Minority Security Holders in Special Transactions ("MI 61-101"), the Offering constitutes a "related party transaction" as CDC and GOHL are insiders of the Company. The Company is relying on an exemption from the formal valuation and minority approval requirements. The Offering is subject to the approval of the TSXV and the Common Shares issued pursuant to the Offering are subject to a statutory hold period of four-months and one day.

About Feronia Inc.

  • Feronia is an agribusiness operating in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).
  • At the heart of Feronia lies a long established palm oil business, Plantations et Huileries du Congo (PHC), which has three remotely located plantations; Lokutu, Yaligimba and Boteka. We also have an arable farming operation which grows and processes rice.
  • When Feronia acquired its palm oil business from Unilever in 2009, it had suffered from years of underinvestment and considerable disruption caused by conflict in the DRC. Our initial focus has been on rebuilding the business and resuming production to secure its future and the livelihoods of the thousands of people we directly employ.
  • Feronia's plantations produce crude palm oil (CPO) and palm kernel oil (PKO). CPO is part of the staple and traditional diet of the Congolese and, with our products sold locally in the DRC, we are well placed to help decrease reliance on imports and increase food security and quality.
  • Feronia prides itself on being the guardian of our 105 year-old palm oil business and its employees, communities, and environment. We have a long term commitment to improve the living and working environment of our employees and their communities and are committed to sustainable agriculture, environmental protection and community inclusion. Feronia has in place an Environmental and Social Action Plan which is focused on implementing environmental and social best practice and improving social infrastructure.
  • Feronia is working towards certification by the Roundtable for Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) and is implementing IFC/World Bank standards for environmental and social sustainability. Our oil palm replanting programme is brownfield in nature - replacing old palms with new - and it has no reliance on deforestation.
  • Feronia's management team is comprised of senior agriculturalists with extensive experience in managing both plantations and farming operations in emerging markets.
  • For more information please see www.feronia.com

Cautionary Notes

Except for statements of historical fact contained herein, the information in this press release constitutes "forward-looking information" within the meaning of Canadian securities law. Such forward-looking information may be identified by words such as "anticipates", "plans", "proposes", "estimates", "intends", "expects", "believes", "may" and "will". There can be no assurance that such statements will prove to be accurate; actual results and future events could differ materially from such statements. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially include, among others: risks related to foreign operations (including various political, economic and other risks and uncertainties), the interpretation and implementation of the "Loi Portant Principes Fondamentaux Relatifs A L'Agriculture", termination or non-renewal of concession rights or expropriation of property rights, political instability and bureaucracy, limited operating history, lack of profitability, lack of infrastructure in the DRC, high inflation rates, limited availability of debt financing in the DRC, fluctuations in currency exchange rates, competition from other businesses, reliance on various factors (including local labour, importation of machinery and other key items and business relationships), the Company's reliance on one major customer, lower productivity at the Company's plantations and arable farming operations, risks related to the agricultural industry (including adverse weather conditions, shifting weather patterns, and crop failure due to infestations), a shift in commodity trends and demands, vulnerability to fluctuations in the world market, the lack of availability of qualified management personnel and stock market volatility. Details of the risk factors relating to Feronia and its business are discussed under the heading "Risks and Uncertainties" in Feronia's Management's discussion and Analysis for the year ended December 31, 2015, a copy of which is available on the Company's SEDAR profile at www.sedar.com. Most of these factors are outside the control of the Company. Investors are cautioned not to put undue reliance on forward-looking information. Except as otherwise required by applicable securities statutes or regulation, the Company expressly disclaims any intent or obligation to update publicly forward-looking information, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its regulation services provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

Feronia Inc.
Xavier de Carniere
Chief Executive Officer
44 (0)7468 697 658
xavier.decarniere@feronia.com
Feronia Inc.
Paul Dulieu
Director of Communications and Corporate Development
44 (0)7554 521421
paul.dulieu@feronia.com
www.feronia.com