Lafarge Africa Promises to Contribute to Nigeria’s Housing, Infrastructure

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Fadekemi Ajakaiye

Lafarge Africa Plc’s is poised to contribute to the nation’s socio-economic development through support for housing and infrastructure.

Chairman, Board of Directors of Lafarge Africa Plc., Mr. Mobolaji Balogun, stated this at the company’s Shareholders’ Forum, recently.

Balogun said “Lafarge Africa Plc., vision is ‘Building a stronger Nigeria safely, ethically and sustainably through innovative construction solutions’. This is clearly a commitment to contributing to the Nigerian economy in various ways such as more housing and infrastructure as well as strong initiatives in sustainable development. It also means building a stronger team in Nigeria with the responsibility to take our company to the highest levels of performance and success.”

The shareholders’ forum, he said was “an integral part of our interaction and collaboration with our shareholders, in recognition of your role as key stakeholders in our business. “This forum provides an opportunity to give an update on the activities of the company and get your feedback as well as contributions on how we can continue to grow the business and make stronger contributions to the socio-economic development of Nigeria.”

Giving a brief on Lafarge, he said, “Our Company started production over 55 years ago and today, the business has grown significantly with giant strides made, thanks to the support of all stakeholders, particularly those of you seated in this room as well as the people you represent. In 2015, we continued to build on the successful completion of the Lafarge Africa asset consolidation transaction through some strategic initiatives, including increasing our shareholding in Ashakacem to 82.46% via a Mandatory Tender Offer and acquisition of further stake in Unicem.”

He said, “On-going till Friday July 1st 2016 is Ashakacem’s Voluntary Tender Offer, providing opportunity for the minorities to participate in a much larger growth platform, which Lafarge Africa represents. I encourage you and your members to accept the Tender, which in simple terms creates the immediate and direct advantage of moving from investors in AshakaCem with 1mtpa cement production capacity to Lafarge Africa with 12mtpa and an additional 2,5mtpa due for commissioning by the end of 2016. The consideration offered for the tender is quite favourable to shareholders of AshakaCem.

“Last Thursday, your Company signed the largest ever dual series bond issuance by a corporate in Nigeria’s debt capital markets for N60billion. The proceeds of the bond issuance, which was concluded following a book build, with the order book over-subscribed, will be used to part-refinance the debt of its wholly-owned subsidiary, UniCem.
“The above and many more initiatives to build a value adding platform for all stakeholders and in particular, our shareholders would not have been possible without your full support. I therefore wish to thank and congratulate our shareholders, my colleagues on the Board of Directors as well as the Management of our great Company for their foresight and spirited efforts at positioning the organization for greater successes in the future.”
He then introduced the new the Group Managing Director and CEO, Michel Puchercos, who came from the LafargeHolcim Group on April 2016.

Also present at the forum was the CFO, Mr. Anders Kristiansson, and other senior officials of the company.