Proparco has joined the shareholding of Harley’s, a leading pharmaceutical distributor in Kenya

published on 07 December 2023
Kenya Uganda Tanzania
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harleys kenya proparco heath medicine investment uganda tanzania
Together with Mauritian conglomerate IBL, Proparco has closed the acquisition of a majority stake in Harley's, alongside the founding family. Proparco’s goal is to expand the supply of medicine and health products in Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania.

Since its inception in 1953, Harley’s has been committed to the highest customer service standards and quality of products. Focused on import, marketing and distribution, the company represents several prestigious global brands. Its turnover is generated from a diversified portfolio of products – ranging from pharmaceuticals and health products to medical equipment.

Harley’s is a family business that has grown and expanded over 70 years, supported by its management and a skilled team that numbers 700 today. The company operates regionally out of hubs in five East African cities: Nairobi, Mombasa, Eldoret in Kenya; Dar es Salaam in Tanzania; and Kampala in Uganda. Harley's route to market is a well-developed distribution network that extends to small and rural pharmacies across East Africa.

The investment and the synergies with IBL’s subsidiary HealthActiv will support Harley's growth plan and are expected to have a positive social impact by promoting job creation and better access to safe medicine, including the development and distribution of pharmaceutical products that may only be marginally available in the region.

“Proparco is very proud to support Harley’s and more generally the pharmaceutical and healthcare sector in East Africa, which we believe are key components of development in the region. Harley’s is a historical player in the pharmaceutical sector, making a big impact on the lives of Kenyans, Ugandans and Tanzanians. We are thrilled to partner with Harley’s talented management team and staff, as well as with IBL, to further provide high-quality distribution in the East Africa region. This is also the second joint investment by Proparco and IBL, following the transaction with Naivas, the leading Kenyan retail chain” said Damien Braud, Head of Equity for Africa and the Middle East at Proparco.