The Eastern and Southern African Trade Fund (ESATF) is an open-ended collective investment fund domiciled in Mauritius and regulated by the Financial Services Commission (FSC). The fund was launched in 2019 to advance trade-led economic and social development via the financing of short to medium-term trade transactions in TDB Group member states and other select African economies, including those of SMEs.
ESATF is managed by Eastern and Southern African Trade Advisers Limited (ESATAL), a fund manager also regulated by FSC, which until recently, was jointly owned by the Eastern and Southern African Trade and Development Bank (TDB) and GML Capital LLP (GML Capital).
Following an extensive review of its strategic approach to asset management, TDB redeemed the minority shares of its London-based partner GML Capital on 30 June 2022, making TDB the sole shareholder of ESATAL as of 1 July 2022.
ESATF has delivered a steady annual performance of 3.52% in 2021 and an absolute return of 11.50% since launch, and more than doubled its starting asset base to USD112mn – enabling TDB Group to expand its trade finance operations including outside of its footprint to other African economies.
Admassu Tadesse, TDB Group President Emeritus and Managing Director said: “Throughout the years, TDB has reformed and transformed into a group structure with several subsidiaries including ESATAL, and a wider geographic scope covering the COMESA-EAC-SADC Tripartite region, and select African economies that align well with AfCFTA ambitions. We are proud of our journey so far with ESATAL, and appreciate GML Capital for their valuable contributions as an early-stage partner as ESATF was set up and launched”.
Daniel Lam Chun, TDB Group Executive, Coverage Indian Ocean-Lusophone Africa says: “Building on TDB Group’s deep knowledge and expertise in trade finance asset class funding and with the same senior executives and key staff remaining involved in ESATAL, no transition will be required following this transaction, with the fund’s activities and strategy remaining unchanged. ESATF will continue to invest in trade finance, structured commodity finance, export finance, and project related finance transactions, with the objective to expand triple bottom line impact and reach of TDB Group activities in the region it serves, while delivering steady returns with low volatility and an emphasis on impact investing”.
TDB Group brings to ESATF deep knowledge in the area of trade finance funding, accumulated over 35 years operating across its 22 member states; this asset class is the primary investment mandate of ESATF.
Kapital Afrik intends to deliver strategic financial information to executives and managers, through a daily newsletter and a website that covers all African finance.