Wilex investment means supporting peoples’ livelihoods


(Picture caption: Wilex Group Founder and Managing Director Tagaloa Eddie Wilson says investing in a business like his means investing directly into enhancing the livelihoods of farmers and communities in Samoa and the Pacific.) 

Home to some of the world’s superfoods and boasting an abundance of agriculturally rich land, investing in Samoa means so much more than making money.

Wilex Group Founder and Managing Director Tagaloa Eddie Wilson says investing in a business like his means investing directly into enhancing the livelihoods of farmers and communities in Samoa and the Pacific.

Samoa is home to the world’s high-quality foods from cocoa, coconuts, kava and noni and Wilex Samoa, based at Lelata, Apia, takes these raw materials sourced from mostly small organic family-run farms to produce artisan food products from the South Pacific.

“We proudly pay our farmers much more than the commodity trading markets would and when you buy from us, we’re all contributing to creating jobs, livelihoods and sustainable income for our people,” Tagaloa says.

Wilex has grown substantially since its humble beginnings in 1986, and Pacific Trade Invest (PTI) New Zealand has assisted the business over the years, Tagaloa adds.

“We have benefited from participating in various in-country training, such as the Path to Market workshop initiated by PTI in partnership with the Samoa Association of Manufacturers and Exporters, as well as hosting us at various trade shows in New Zealand where we have gained considerable exposure to a new market.”

Now firmly established in Samoa, Wilex has solid technical and manufacturing capacity, which forms the basis of a sound investment with high return of investment, Tagaloa continues.

“Our existing and pending product lines have huge market potential in New Zealand and overseas.

“Samoa is world renowned for the high quality of its superfoods commodities, which we use to add value into high-end products with a strong appeal to organic and health conscious consumers worldwide.

“These are accessible through online selling to the international market-place.”

For those interested in investing in Samoa, it offers a stable political system based on strong social and cultural structures and values; a trained, productive and industrially adaptable work force that communicates well in English; competitive wage rates and free repatriation of capital and profits.

It is well developed and has access to trade agreements and arrangements offering preferential terms; it is a member of the World Trade Organization; offers attractive industry incentive packages; as well as a pleasant and safe lifestyle.

Investing in any business carries risk of course, and in Samoa, the supply chain can be a risk factor Tagaloa says.

“However, this is mitigated by regional supply sourcing and strong links with Samoan and Pacific farmers.”

As of the end of May 2020, Samoa is one of the few countries in the world without any confirmed COVID-19 cases, yet the pandemic is still impacting business, Tagaloa says.

“The negative impact on local and regional tourism has had a negative impact on business, however our bulk exports markets such as China and the United States of America have kept business going strong.”

Continuous investment in technology and research and development to create newer and innovative products and services is a way to face any challenges in this climate head-on, he adds.

There are plans for the business to enhance its exports capability globally by establishing its main manufacturing and export distribution out of New Zealand, supported by its well-established primary manufacturing facilities in Samoa.

New Zealand has been selected for the project due to the quality of service and infrastructure support services to support the project.

Wilex New Zealand Limited has been established to carry out the proposed manufacturing and distribution in Aotearoa.

Contact Chief Investment Officer Manuel Valdez Manuel.V@pacifictradeinvest.co.nz for more information.

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