Ireland-based agricultural technology (agritech) company Devenish Nutrition has secured €118m in long-term funding, which will be used to support the company’s research, development and growth plans.

The funding has been offered by the European Investment Bank (EIB) and Devenish’s new commercial finance partners, Ulster Bank and Danske Bank.

EIB has agreed to provide €40m of the total promised amount.

The grant is said to be the first support of its kind to be offered by the EIB for the agri-business sector under the Investment Plan for Europe, which involves the European Commission and EIB as strategic partners.

"This funding will be invested in the business to build and grow our R&D and manufacturing capabilities, as well as facilitate our mergers and acquisitions activity."

EIB vice-president Andrew McDowell said: “Agri-business around the world faces increasing competitiveness, as well as economic and political pressures.

“Devenish has been involved in animal nutrition for more than 60 years and their continuous investment in research and development (R&D) of new products is crucial in addressing these pressures.

“This is a landmark deal for the EIB in Ireland and in the agri-business sector. The EIB loan will strengthen innovation activities in centres of excellence across the company and enable Devenish to thrive across the world, from its base in Europe.

“Development of new animal nutrition products and research into improving soil health, animal health, human health and environmental sustainability are crucial components for the success of agriculture and food production across the world.”

Devenish is expected to leverage the funding to develop a purpose-built Global Innovation Centre in Dowth, County Meath, which will be used to carry out and showcase the company’s ‘One Health – from Soil to Society’ research, development and innovation programme.

It will also fund innovation-related capital projects and research into optimised food innovation, in addition to animal nutrition, and health and sustainability.

Devenish Group CEO Richard Kennedy said: “This funding will be invested in the business to build and grow our R&D and manufacturing capabilities, as well as facilitate our mergers and acquisitions activity.”