Minister Ploumen meets with Berry Marttin and partnerbank talents

The first day of the Rabo Seed 2 Feed conference took place at the Prinsenhof in Delft on Thursday, 25 April 2013. Rabobank Westland invited entrepreneurs to attend this special conference to share knowledge on solving the global food issue by investing in local farmers, retailers and infrastructure in Africa. The day was particularly special for Rabo Development because Dutch Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation Lilianne Ploumen took the opportunity to meet with Berry Marttin and talents from Rabo Development’s partner banks.

Minister Ploumen was interested in finding out more about Rabobank’s partner banks. She asked Luís Henrique Veit of Banco Cooperativo Sicredi in Brazil why her bank chose to work with Rabobank. Luís replied by saying, 'The cooperative way is the way for the future and that is why Rabobank fits us well.'

He also said the cooperative model, even though it has existed for more than a century, is still very relevant today. 'We can achieve more by working together with the local entrepreneurs. It is the best way to cultivate a growing economy, now and in the future,' said Luís.

Berry Marttin introduced the talents to Minister Ploumen one by one and provided a brief profile of each partner bank. Conelious Nabanyama from Zanaco in Zambia shook the Minister’s hand while Berry Marttin told the Minister that Zanaco is a fast growing bank in Zambia that is far ahead of many other banks in the area of mobile banking.

After speaking with the employees from the partner banks, Minister Lilianne Ploumen was asked to take to the stage and share her vision on investing in Africa. She emphasised the importance of approaching the global food issue in a holistic manner that includes intervening on different fronts of the value chain.

Rabo Development
From left to right: Christine Pirenne (Rabo Development), Karin Hendriksen-Nijenhof (Rabo Development), Luís Henrique Veit (Banco Cooperativo Sicredi in Brazil), Berry Marttin (Executive Board Member), Han Zhe (Longjiang Bank in China), Lilianne Ploumen (Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation), Liu Ying Ming (Andy) (Longjiang Bank in China), Rodrigo Javier Rojas Vera (Banco Regional in Paraguay), Fabricio Dossena Silva and Ricardo Green Sommer (Banco Cooperativo Sicredi in Brazil), Conelious Nabanyama (Zanaco Bank in Zambia).

Rabo Development for Africa

Rabobank is acting in many ways to help solve the global food issue. Rabo Development’s partner banks support local entrepreneurs to develop their businesses in emerging economies. In addition to financial assistance, Rabo Development provides knowledge and technical expertise in order to enable the partner banks to become independent and ready to attain growth. The aim is to deploy Rabobank’s expertise in the food & agribusiness to the areas where assistance is needed most and Africa definitely tops the list.

Rabobank recently took out a stake in dfcu Bank of Uganda and this once again demonstrates that Rabobank is committed to the future of Africa and the rest of the world.

An image gallery of the conference you can find here: