CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA — PepsiCo is investing $40 million in Ethiopian subsidiary Senselet, which produces the potato chip brand SUN Chips. The investment will fund the construction of an additional potato chip production line and a new snack production line inside the brand’s existing facilities.
Senselet was established in 2015, and its Ethiopian potato processing site was opened and began production in 2017. SUN Chips are sold in approximately 10,000 retailers across Ethiopia, according to the company, and are available in original salt, habesha (regional spices), tomato and paprika flavors.
“[The] investment is further proof of the confidence that PepsiCo has in the potential of the country for economic growth,” said Chris Wijnterp, general manager of PepsiCo’s Foods unit in Ethiopia. “This cash injection will allow us to increase our production capacity for snacks tenfold. This also allows us to further leverage PepsiCo’s expertise to help accelerate the growth of Senselet in Ethiopia by boosting its potato sourcing programs, as well as its manufacturing and go-to-market capabilities.”
As part of the PepsiCo Positive Agriculture initiative, Senselet aims to localize potato production, increase famers’ income and build a more stable potato value chain, according to the company. In addition, the investment is expected to create over 500 new jobs throughout the brand’s supply chain.