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Client Success Story

Project harvest | Global agribusiness investment strategy

The problem

The client

Our client on this project was a Middle East-based family office who sought to diversify their portfolio by investing in the agrifood industry. Primarily operating within the manufacturing, automotive, real estate, and finance industries, the client has a long-standing history of successful investments both locally and internationally and were drawn by the prospect of investing in low-risk and high-growth agrifood assets.


The Middle East region faces unique challenges in ensuring food security due to the limited amount of arable land and its heavy reliance on food imports. Harsh desert conditions constrain local agricultural production, making local investment in agrifood assets challenging, and requiring high-tech solutions like hydroponics and vertical farming to make small-scale farming viable.

The region relies heavily on international markets, which introduces the risk of geopolitical and supply chain disruptions. Consequently, local investors are increasingly looking towards international investments in local agrifood projects as a strategic move to secure more stable and diverse food sources. This strategy not only mitigates the risks associated with local production limitations and global supply disruptions but also offers opportunities for growth and expansion in the global agrifood sector.

The problem

The client sought to identify agribusiness investment opportunities that could provide a high ROI while also contributing to local food security.

However, lacking expertise in this sector, they required external help to do so. In particular, the client sought a structured and methodological approach to assess investment opportunities, focusing on target verticals (such as dairy, ‘super foods’ etc.) in neighbouring countries.

The solution

The client contacted Farrelly Mitchell to support the development of a global agribusiness investment strategy. We were commissioned to present a deep review of the local food market and a global value chain analysis, identifying supply gaps in local markets to uncover and identify suitable global agribusiness investment opportunities.

Market overview

Our market research consultants conducted a thorough review of the local food market to identify food product categories with high demand and growth potential. This analysis covered the wholesale food sector, consumer food products, and commodity food products.

We assessed operational strategies and market trends across restaurants, grocery stores, and food delivery services, including the branding and marketing strategies of packaged goods. Our examination extended to supply chain dynamics and the pricing of raw agricultural commodities.

As part of a comprehensive economic analysis, we considered both macroeconomic and microeconomic factors to assess the broader economic environment and market dynamics. Through detailed demand and supply evaluations, alongside a cost analysis, we identified key market drivers, trends, and challenges. This assessment revealed market gaps and led to the identification of several food product categories poised for growth.

Global value chain analysis

For the second stage of this project, we conducted a global value chain analysis to identify verticals capable of supplying the high-demand products identified. This analysis identified key drivers, trends, and challenges which impacted the value chains of the relevant target verticals. These included technological advancements, consumer preferences, regulatory changes, supply chain disruptions, environmental concerns, and market volatilities.

Next, we segmented the market by product category, geography, and customer demographics, to enhance our understanding of supply and demand patterns, pricing strategies, and competitive pressures. This segmentation revealed the markets with the highest growth potential that best align with the client’s strategic goals. We assessed the suitability of target verticals for meeting market demands, focusing on factors like production costs, supply chain efficiencies, and product quality. This provided the client with a strategic investment roadmap, aligning market opportunities with potential verticals to optimise returns.


Financial analysis and recommendations

Finally, we conducted a topline cost/benefit analysis of the identified target verticals to evaluate their investment potential. This included estimating margins for profitability and performing a comparative advantage analysis to assess cost benefits against competitors. We highlighted value-add opportunities and areas where strategic investments could yield significant returns. Financial projections and rates of return were modelled to provide insights into expected investment outcomes.

For each target vertical, we formulated a specific investment strategy, providing a suitable rationale to the client based on our findings. We also included risk limitation and mitigation measures and provided ROI estimates to aid the client’s decisions.

This comprehensive analysis equipped the client with a detailed understanding of the financial viability and the strategic fit of various sectors. It offered clear, data-driven insights into potential returns and risks, and enabled informed investment decisions in target verticals.

The results

Our work provided the client with a clear understanding of local market supply and demand gaps, pinpointing high-demand and high-growth product categories. Through our analysis of global investment opportunities, the client received a clear investment roadmap that identified potential targets and determined their risk and return, which positioned the client to capitalise on emerging markets while mitigating exposure to volatile sectors.

With our help, the client was able to make informed investment decisions based upon up-to-date and relevant market insights. Ultimately, this allowed the client to strategically allocate their resources and drive growth within the local food industry.

Designing bespoke agribusiness investment strategies

This case highlights the complexities and risks associated with agrifood investments and the key role that consultants can play in the investment process. Making investment decisions without a full understanding of local and global market forces can introduce unnecessary risks that reduce return on investment.

At Farrelly Mitchell, our expert consulting team offers tailored commercial insights and recommendations to businesses seeking growth, market entry, or operational improvement. We provide a wide range of commercial and technical supports, including M&A consulting, due diligence, feasibility assessments, risk analysis and much more. Contact our team today to learn more.

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