These two young men began to transformation of Allison’s business. They were initially not salaried and had no offices. They relied on informal commissions and returns from their small farms. The Launch In 2000, new windows of opportunities were opened as a result of new agricultural policies implemented by the government. The Cassava Enterprise Development Programme was more promising. To benefit from the loans, technical assistance and other incentives under this programme, Allison had to formalize his farm holdings. His son and nephew handled this task and Madison & Sons was born.
A bank account was opened in the new to access the loan. Also, an office with at least a farm manager, accountant and clerical staff was needed to benefit from capacity building on farm management. The initial plan of the management of Madison & Sons, under Allison’s son and nephew, was for the production of cassava. There was no plan for processing the cassava after harvest. But cassava was perishable. The demand by local industries was not enough. The produce must be processed for markets in other cities and abroad.
Given the support provided by government in cassava processing, the management thought of venturing into processing. However, the additional risks of processing a perishable newly introduced discouraged the management. To reduce these risks, the management decided to invite Allison’s old friend, who has been successful in bakery and confectionaries. Mr Garuk Gongs agreed to invest in the business and establish a cassava processing unit in the farm land. To accommodate the new investor, the ownership structure had to be changed. The registered business name Madison & Sons was incorporated in 2001 as a limited liability company.
The new company was given the corporate name Green Field Venture Limited. Under the new ownership arrangement, Madison % Sons soley owned by Allison had 35% stake in the Cassava Processing unit. Garuk’s Yummy Bakeries and Confectionaries (YBC) controlled 65%. Allison and Garuk jointly raised $27,000.00 initial deposit to access $26,000.00 loan from the Agric and Coop Bank for the new cassava processing unit. The new investment accounted for about 37% of GFVL’s total asset/capital base. In view of this development, the management structure was changed.
Allison became the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of GFVL. Allison’s son, Alonso, became General Manager Farms Operations while Garuk’s daughter-in-law, Binta, was appointed General Manager Cassava Processing.