ImpactAlpha, March 16 — Abu Dhabi-based Pure Harvest Smart Farms launched in 2016 to provide locally-grown, sustainable food in the United Arab Emirates, which imports 80% of its food. The company raised $50 million in growth financing that was structured as an Islamic finance-compliant sukuk by SHUAA Capital.
Pure Harvest will use the funding, along with a $10 million equity round led by Sancta Capital, to expand to Saudi Arabia and Kuwait.
Global Islamic finance reached nearly $3 trillion in assets last year in predominantly Muslim countries in Africa and Asia. Islamic law, or Shariah, requires risk to be shared by creditor and debtor, and for lending to be backed by real assets. Sometimes called Shariah-compliant bonds, sukuks grant the holder a share in a tangible asset.
An early socially responsible investing sukuk in Malaysia funded the roll-out of 20 trust schools through the nonprofit Yayasan AMIR trust (see, “What can Islamic finance teach impact investors?”).