While businesses are shrinking in sizes and laying off staff in most cases due to the economic recession that is taking a huge haul on Nigeria economy, one company Promasidor Nigeria Limited, makers of the popular Cowbell milk brand has concluded plans in partnership with IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, to inject a $25 million loan (over N8billion) into its production with a view to increasing efficiency and expand its brand portfolio.
The Managing Director, Promasidor Nigeria Limited- PNL, Mr. Olivier Thiry, explained that the capital injection would be used to support purchases of new machinery that will enable PNL to increase efficiency, expand production and develop new products, leading to greater availability of nutritious food products in Nigeria at competitive prices.
According to him “This is a very competitive market for food products. We expect that this investment will help us optimize production costs, enabling us to reach and nourish more consumers with our affordable range of quality products. We will also target our portfolio extension by gradual integration of more locally sourced raw materials from producers in Nigeria and widening our network of distributors”
He noted that the investment became necessary in view of the numerous business opportunities in the Nigerian market.
He disclosed that Promasidor Nigeria is currently faced with production limitations as it could not produce enough quantity of its nutritious products to service the demand for them from different parts of the country.
Meanwhile, Mary-Jean Moyo, IFC Head of Manufacturing, Agribusiness and Services for sub-Saharan Africa said, “Agribusiness is Nigeria’s largest employer. Increasing investment in food-processing companies like PNL will help diversify Nigeria’s economy and improve nutrition by expanding the supply of affordable food.”
IFC said it invests in Agribusiness to enhance productivity with the goals of greater food security, higher rural incomes, and improving environmental and social sustainability. Today, it added, the average African farm performs at just 40 per cent of potentials. The organization said by 2030, Africa’s agriculture and agribusiness market is expected to triple in value to reach $1 trillion. Africa needs more than $10 billion in new investment annually to achieve this aspired expansion of output.
In the fiscal year which ended in June 2016, IFC’s overall, long-term investments in sub-Saharan Africa totalled nearly $3.7 billion, including more than $1.8 billion mobilized from other investors. IFC clients provided 240,000 jobs, supported nearly 1.2 million farmers, and treated nearly 960,000 patients.