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HFMP And FMN Combination: The Making of A National Champion

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HoneyWell

The contribution of key players in the Nigerian food industry has grown in value and relevance over the years. According to a report by the World Trade Organization (WTO), Nigeria is ranked as the largest food market in Africa, with significant investment in the local industry and a high level of imports. As of now, the food and beverage sector is estimated to contribute 22.5% of the manufacturing industry value, and 4.6% of Nigeria’s GDP.  In another report compiled by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), it was confirmed that the food sector brought in an average of 57% of Gross domestic product (GDP) and generated 64.5% of export earnings.

Founded in 1972, Honeywell Group began as a food trading company servicing the West African region before pivoting to importing a variety of goods for the domestic Nigerian market. Now operating an investment holding company  based in Nigeria, Honeywell Group Limited has diversified its business l into different sectors which are referred to as portfolio companies. The Group has evolved to become an investment company participating in major sectors of the Nigerian economy including foods, real estate, leisure and hospitality, energy, infrastructure, and financial services.

Honeywell Flour Mills Plc (HFMP), one of the portfolio companies of Honeywell Group Limited and a market leader in milling, processing & packaging of flour and other wheat-based products in Nigeria has continued to contribute immensely to the growth and performance of the Nigerian economy. With over 20 years of experience, HFMP has gathered extensive knowledge and skill in the production of flour and a range of flour-based products. The company has superior operational efficiency and remains a dominant player in the food industry in Nigeria.

Operating on a total installed capacity of 2,610 metric tonnes per day, HFMP manufactures a variety of products from wheat meals, semolina, noodles, superfine flours to spaghetti, macaroni, brown flour, amongst others.

During the company’s recent Annual General Meeting (AGM) which was held on October 14, 2021, the company recorded an all-time high revenue of N109.5 billion, an increase of 36% over N80.4 billion for the financial year ending March 2021. The company’s Operating Profit also grew faster than revenue at 39%, from N5.4 billion in FY 2019 to N7.6 billion in FY 2020.

Just recently, the Honeywell Group Limited announced the signing of an agreement with Flour Mills of Nigeria Plc (FMN) on the proposed combination of Honeywell Flour Mills Plc and Flour Mills of Nigeria, another leading Nigerian food manufacturer to further enhance food security in the country and create a more resilient national champion in the Nigerian foods industry. This agreement will have Honeywell Group Limited dispose of a 71.69% stake it has in HFMP to FMN.

Building on the achievements and improved performances of HFMP and FMN year-on-year, it can be seen that this is a combination of two giants in the food manufacturing industry in Nigeria. With more than the 85-year combined track record of both companies and their shared goal of making affordable food available to Nigeria’s population, stakeholders will benefit from this combination in numerous ways.

Based on the scale of the transaction that will be carried out by the consolidated company, this will provide employees with more career development opportunities in a larger organisation, with the potential to create more jobs in the economy. Customers will also benefit from access to a wider product range and an even stronger stream of innovation that can only be delivered by a combined entity with stronger teams and financial muscle. In addition, Nigeria and its food security agenda will benefit from both companies’ focus on developing Nigeria’s industrial capability, its agricultural value chain and specifically backward integration of the food industry.

The proposed combination will bring together two trusted and entrenched brands, creating a single entity of becoming a national champion in the food manufacturing space that is better positioned to benefit the growing Nigerian population and leverage opportunities stemming from the African Continent Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).

As this deal comes to a close, Honeywell Group, a leading investment company is setting its sights on the journey of refining and growing its investment portfolio. This will see it consolidate in sectors where it currently operates, such as real estate, energy, financial services, infrastructure. The company also intends to announce more strategic initiatives in the coming months.

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Nigerian Breweries Announces 142.8% Jump in Profit in H1 2022

Nigerian Breweries Plc on Friday reported a whopping 142.8% jump in profit after tax realised in the first half (H1) of 2022.

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Nigerian Breweries - Investors King

Nigerian Breweries Plc on Friday reported a whopping 142.8% jump in profit after tax realised in the first half (H1) of 2022.

In the company’s unaudited financial statement obtained by Investors King, revenue grew by 31% from N209.031 billion recorded in the first half of 2021 to N274.085 billion in the period under review.

Cost of sales stood at N155.349 billion, an increase of 18.3% from N131.340 billion filed in the corresponding period of 2021.

Gross profit rose by 52.4% from N77.917 billion in H1 2021 to N118.736 billion in H1 2022 while marketing, distribution and administration expenses surged by 44.8 percent to N84.896 billion from N58.628 billion.

Results from operating activities expanded by 79.9% to N35.840 billion, up from N19.917 billion achieved in H1 2021.

Nigerian Breweries grew profit before tax to N25.697 billion in the period under review from N11.940 billion filed in H1 2021.

The company paid N6.954 billion in income tax to post N18.743 billion profit after tax. This represents an increase of N142.8% growth from N7.858 billion recorded in H1 2021.

In a press release signed by Uaboi G. Agbebaku, Esq., Company Secretary, Nigerian Breweries said profitability was driven by the company’s pricing strategy and better mix.

However, the increase in the cost of sales was attributed to the recent surge in commodity prices due to internal and external factors.

“The increase in operating profit and profit after tax was driven mainly by top line growth resulting from our pricing strategy and better mix. Increase in cost of sales was due to rise in commodity prices. Marketing, distribution and administration expenses were driven by the increase in commercial activities, rising diesel prices and higher wages arising from collective labour agreements,” the company stated.

“Although interest expenses were lower, the net finance cost was higher due to foreign exchange losses arising from a higher cost of meeting foreign obligations to overseas partners.

“Our business continues to build momentum and deliver consistent profitable growth even in the context of a very challenging operating environment. Our best-in-class portfolio of brands provides a unique platform that positions us well to lead and grow the beer and malt category and drive superior long-term value creation.”

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Lafarge Africa Grows Profit by 3.5% in Q2, 2022

Lafarge Africa Plc, one of Africa’s largest cement manufacturers, managed to sustain profitability in the second quarter (Q2) of the year as over 70% jump in selling and distribution costs dragged on the company’s profit after tax.

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Lafarge Africa - Investors King

Lafarge Africa Plc, one of Africa’s largest cement manufacturers, managed to sustain profitability in the second quarter (Q2) of the year as an over 70% jump in selling and distribution costs dragged on the company’s profit after tax.

In the firm’s unaudited financial statement obtained by Investors King, revenue rose by 30.5% from N73.546 billion recorded in the second quarter of 2021 to N95.981 billion in the period under review.

Cost of sales (production) jumped 30.3% to N42.055 billion, up from N32.267 billion reported in the same period of 2021.

The increase weighs on gross profit as expected. Gross profit stood at N53.926 billion, against N41.279 billion achieved in the corresponding period of 2021.

Similarly, selling and distribution costs jumped a whopping 73.6% from N13.034 billion in Q2 2021 to N22.631 billion in Q2 2022. While other income dipped 38.36% to N89.631 million from N145.415 million in Q2 2022.

Therefore, the surge in cost of production, selling and distribution costs plunged operating profit to N26.514 billion. Still, a 12.8% increase when compared to the N23.515 billion realised in Q2 2021.

Finance income declined from N191.142 million to N136.945 million. Again, finance costs also jumped by over 50% to N1.239 billion in the period under review.

All these increases in expenses and declines in income dragged on profit before tax to N25.411 billion, a 3.5% increase from N23.976 billion in Q2 2021.

Commenting on the company’s performance, Khaled El Dokani, CEO of Lafarge Africa, said: “Our Q2 2022 performance shows significant improvement over Q2 2021, with net sales of +30.5%, recurring EBIT of +12.8% and net income of +3.5%.

“Our H1 2022 results are even more impressive, with 28.7% and 32.1% growth in net sales and net income,
respectively.

“This further confirms the consistent resilience and robustness of our business. We are equally pleased with the progress we are making on sustainability; our use of affordable clean energy and agroecology footprint are in accordance with our net zero pledge journey.”

On the outlook for the second half of the year, Lafarge Africa’s boss predicted a positive demand momentum expected in H2 2022.

He said, “We will continue to maximize volume opportunities across our markets and actively manage our costs and remain focused in our drive towards sustainability.”

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Ethiopian Airlines Orders Africa’s First A350-1000

Ethiopian Airlines Group, the flag carrier of Ethiopia, Africa’s largest airline group, has upsized four of its A350-900 on order to the largest variant of the A350 Family, the A350-1000, becoming Africa’s first customer for the aircraft.

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Ethiopian Airlines Group, the flag carrier of Ethiopia, Africa’s largest airline group, has upsized four of its A350-900 on order to the largest variant of the A350 Family, the A350-1000, becoming Africa’s first customer for the aircraft.

Ethiopian Airlines has already ordered 22 A350-900s, of which 16 aircraft have been delivered. With the A350-1000 upsizing, Ethiopian Airlines’ backlog consists of four A350-1000s and two A350-900s.

Ethiopian Airlines Group CEO Mr. Mesfin Tasew said, “We are delighted over the upsizing of the A350-900 on order to the largest variant, A350-1000, that helps us stay ahead of the curve in technology. We are the technology leaders in the continent introducing the latest technology and fuel-efficient fleet into Africa. The A350-1000 is the best fit for our dense routes, and we believe that the upsizing will be instrumental in satisfying the increasing demand of customers in our vast global network across five continents. We will continue on keeping ourselves abreast of aviation technology advancements to enhance our service and fulfil customers’ demand.”

“We are proud of our strong partnership with Ethiopian Airlines – the first airline in Africa to order and operate the A350-900. In another first, Ethiopian Airlines is once again leading the way in Africa’s aviation sector by introducing the A350-1000, the largest version of the world’s most efficient and technologically advanced passenger aircraft.” said Mikail Houari, President, Airbus Africa and Middle East. “The A350-900 has delivered extraordinary capability, fuel efficiency, and operational reliability of 99.5 percent together with unbeatable operational flexibility and efficiency, from short to ultra-long-range operations.”

The A350-1000 will increase the East African carrier’s capacity and it will be an addition to its modern wide-body fleet. The airline will benefit from a flexible, high-value Family leveraging Airbus’ unprecedented level of commonality and same type rating.

The Airbus A350’s clean-sheet design features state-of-the-art aerodynamics, a carbon-fibre fuselage and wings, plus the most fuel-efficient Rolls-Royce Trent XWB engines. Together, these latest technologies translate into unrivalled levels of operational efficiency and sustainability for Ethiopian Airlines, with a 25% reduction in fuel-burn and CO2 emissions compared to previous generation twin-aisle aircraft.

By the end of June 2022, the A350 Family had received 940 orders from 52 customers, making it the reference large widebody family for the next decades.

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