African women crossing a tea field and plucking tea leaves on plantation in central Ethiopia, Africa.

Browns group to take over plantation business in Africa.

Browns Investments PLC, a Sri Lankan company with a long history of operating plantation businesses, will take over Lipton’s tea estates in Kenya, Rwanda, and Tanzania.

According to a joint statement, Browns will invest in its estates in Kenya and Sri Lanka to meet the new standards by 2025.

In addition, Lipton and Browns will create a 1 billion Kenyan shilling (approximately £5.9 million) Community Welfare Trust to generate additional employment opportunities in Kenya.

This deal is expected to make Browns the world’s leading tea exporter, producing around 87 million kilograms of tea annually. Browns will also become a major supplier to Lipton, one of the world’s largest tea companies.

Lipton CEO Nathalie Roos noted that Browns’ “credibility, capabilities, and scale” were key to choosing them as partners.

Nathalie emphasised the shared commitment to sustainability and community development, aiming to “set a new precedent for transforming the global tea market.”

Browns Investments CEO Kamantha Amarasekera says the partnership builds a “sustainable, responsible, and prosperous future” for all.

He sees this partnership as a significant step towards elevating the tea industry while positively impacting the communities involved.

This news follows Unilever’s sale of its tea business, including Lipton, to private equity firm CVC Partners in 2021 for £3.8 billion.