Cosmeline Products


The Project Cosmeline Products concerns the setting up of a local toilet soap production facility with an initial production of 3,400 ton soap per year in Sierra Leone. There is no toilet soap production in Sierra Leone, and toilet soap is principally imported from Indonesia. Local manufacturing will render toilet soap more affordable to Sierra Leoneans and will provide a new market outlet for smallholder producers and traders of palm oil.

Cosmeline principally buys Crude Palm Oil (CPO) originating from smallholders’ plantations in the provinces, at 200 km distance. The smallholders have plantations (1 ha) with oil palm trees and have the fruit milled locally. Smallholders/millers sell to women artisanal suppliers (brokers), which in their turn sell to the Company. The Company sources its palm oil through 6-10 women artisanal suppliers, especially during the peak season (May –September) when supply of CPO is much higher than demand and prices are lower. The implementation of the Project includes the training of palm oil suppliers in fair pricing mechanisms, to ascertain that the right prices are being paid in the value chain. This training is provided by a local NGO.

BIO’s investment is to finance the startup activities of Cosmeline. Credit facilities are limited in Sierra Leone and long term financing cannot be offered. BIO’s financing is fine tuned to Cosmeline’s finance needs- with a 3 year grace period- so that the activity can be build up before the first capital has to be repaid.

The project entails active promotion of hand washing with soap, which has a positive impact on public health and hygiene. According to Unicef, hand washing with soap is among the most effective and inexpensive way to prevent the incidence of diarrhea, which is the 2nd leading cause of death amongst children under five years old.

BIO contributes, via a technical assistance grant, to improved access for Cosmeline Products to premium soap markets. BIO’s technical assistance support aims at strengthening the managerial skills, the marketing and the quality of Cosmeline Products by reaching a Process certification (Good Manufacturing Practices), to development of product branding and promotion and providing management expertise.

Development impact:

  • Local economic growth: local production of toilet soap to replace Indonesian imports; direct and indirect job creation.
  • Private sector consolidation/innovation: high quality soap; quality assurance process.

Website :

  • Investment amount (€):

    € 1.16 M

  • Contract signature :


    Installation of a toilets soap production line

  • Nature of intervention :


  • Development impacts :

    • 1 — Local economic growth
    • 2 — Private sector consolidation/innovation