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Dangote Refinery to Commence Operations in March 2023

Dangote Refinery has been scheduled to start production in March 2023, an inside source revealed. 

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Aliko Dangote - Investors King

As pre-commissioning tests reach concluding stages, the world’s largest refinery in a single production, Dangote Refinery has been scheduled to start production in March 2023, an inside source revealed. 

With a capacity to process 650,000 barrels per day and an estimated annual refining capacity of 10.4 million tonnes of petrol, Dangote Refinery will serve both the Nigerian market as well as the neighbouring countries. 

Situated in the Lekki part of Lagos State, it is expected to double Nigeria’s refining capacity and help in meeting the increasing demand for refined petroleum products, while providing cost and foreign exchange savings.

Nigeria President, Muhammadu Buhari who doubles as the Minister of Petroleum is expected to commission the refinery before he leaves office on May 29, Investors King learnt. 

It would be recalled that the Group Managing Director of Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Mele Kolo Kyari earlier said that the Federal Government is expecting the Dangote Refinery project to take off in the first quarter of 2023. 

Kyari also added that NNPC had acquired a 20 percent stake in the oil refinery built by Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote. 

With the capacity to generate at least 4,000 direct and about 145,000 indirect jobs, the Dangote refinery is expected to be a critical component of Nigeria’s economy. The refinery will also produce aviation fuel which has been a huge challenge for the country’s aviation industry. 

Similarly, while expenditure on fuel subsidies has now hit N6 trillion because of the price of crude oil which has for the most part of 2022 remained above $100 per barrel, the Federal Government is hoping for Dangote Refinery to end its fuel importation challenges.

Experts and International financial institutions have warned that fuel subsidies will further complicate Nigeria’s financial woes. 

However, the government’s will to remove fuel subsidies at different times has been confronted with opposition, especially from the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) which insisted that the federal government must build up local refining capacity and stop the importation of petroleum products before embarking on the removal of fuel subsidy.

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UAC Nigeria Posts ₦4.7 Billion Loss After Tax as Animal Feeds Unit Records ₦3.6 Billion Loss 

UAC’s gross profit dipped 13% to N15 billion on rising input costs while the company posted N1.3 billion operating loss

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UAC Nigeria

UAC of Nigeria Plc on Monday reported N4.702 billion loss after tax for the 2022 financial year as N3.6 billion operating loss from the animal feeds and other edibles unit offset the N3 billion profit achieved in the paints unit.

Revenue grew by 8% to N109 billion on positive revenue growth of 5% from animal feeds and other edibles business unit, 25.1% from paints and 39.3% from quick-service restaurants.

The company disclosed in its unaudited financial results obtained by Investors King.

UAC’s gross profit dipped 13% to N15 billion on rising input costs while the company posted N1.3 billion operating loss, down from N5 billion achieved in 2021. Loss before tax stood at N3.4 billion in the period under review.

Moving forward, the company said it has completed groupwide ERP implementation to SAP S/4 Hana focused on enhancing controls.

N2.8 billion was invested to increase SWAN spring water capacity 3x. Another N1.2 billion was invested in the Mr Bigg’s and Debonairs Pizza restaurant network.

Loss per share was 121 kobo in the 2022 financial year compared to 63 Kobo earnings per share recorded in the corresponding year of 2021.

Free cash flow, however, improved from -N19.1 billion in December 2021 to N10.7 billion, largely due to the company’s improved working capital management in FY 2022.

Commenting on the results, Group Managing Director, Fola Aiyesimoju, stated: “Our profitability was negatively impacted by losses in our animal feeds segment, which more than offset contributions from other segments. Our businesses grappled with escalating costs particularly energy, distribution, and finance costs which negatively impacted performance.

“Tighter working capital management resulted in N10.7bn free cash flow across the UAC Group. We will execute growth initiatives with caution until macroeconomic conditions improve.”

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Tech Layoffs – Electric Vehicle Maker Arrival Plans to Downsize Workforce to Reduce Operating Cost

The automaker revealed that the restructuring was necessitated by laying off half of its workforce, as it plans to preserve cash.

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New vehicles

Uk-Based electric vehicle maker Arrival has disclosed plans to downsize its workforce by 50% which is about 800 employees, as it plans to reduce operating costs.

The automaker revealed that the restructuring was necessitated by laying off half of its workforce, as it plans to preserve cash.

The company via a statement, “When combined with other cost reductions in real estate and third-party spending, the company expects to halve the ongoing cash cost of operating the business to approximately $30 million per quarter”.

In its third-quarter report released in November last year, the company disclosed that it had $330 million of cash on hand, noting that it will provide further details of its business plan on the 9th of March this year.

Also commenting on its proposed layoff plan, Arrival’s new CEO Igor Torgov disclosed that the decision to lay off some part of its employees was a tough one, however noting that the company is committed to supporting them during this difficult period.

In his words,

“The actions support our journey to become a champion in innovative products and new more efficient methods of vehicle production, particularly in the important U.S market for commercial electric vehicles.

“We are keenly aware that these decisions, while necessary will have a profound impact on a significant number of our colleagues. We are 100% committed to supporting our employees during this difficult process”.

Investors King understands that this is the third time since July last year that Arrival has taken drastic measures to stay viable. For months, the automaker has been struggling to make do with its limited resources even as it seeks to kick off serial production of its main product, an electric van.

It is however interesting to note that the EV maker in November last year, got a delisting warning from Nasdaq because its stock price was trading at a very low price.

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Automobile Firm to Complete Large Assembly Plant In Ogun, Unveils Plans to Build Vehicles

The plant would be completed by the end of the year and its operation would boost the exportation of vehicles abroad

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Lanre Shittu Motors

As part of its plans to expand its business space and boost exportation, an automobile Firm, Lanre Shittu Motors (LSM) has said it was constructing a large vehicle assembly plant in Sagamu, Ogun State.

According to the Group Executive Director of the firm, Mr Taiwo Shittu, the plant would be completed by the end of the year and its operation would boost the exportation of vehicles abroad.

The CEO of the indigenous auto assembler, during an interview in Lagos State, also disclosed plans to build vehicles that will be known as Lanre Shittu.

Already, Shittu said the firm has started assembling a mid-size pickup truck christened Huanghai LSM, in partnership with a Chinese automobile manufacturer, Dandong Huanghai Automobile Co Ltd with a view to building Nigerian auto industry.

Shittu, while explaining the reason behind the collaboration of LSM with the Chinese firm, said it was to share technology and other things that would aid exportation to other African countries and beyond.

He said his firm has a plan to own a vehicle called LSM (Lanre Shittu Motors), and described Huanghai as a very good brand which is the second-biggest pickup company in China.

He said LSM’s partnership with Huanghai would afford them the opportunity to share technology among others before fully facing the indigenous firm.

LSM chief executive noted that the focus of the firm is to build the Nigerian automobile industry to the level of exporting its products to other African countries and beyond, adding that LSM, which will be 42 as a vehicle manufacturer this year would soon have its brand intact.

According to him, the company’s assembly plant had started injecting local content into products coming from the auto assembler, saying that about 30 percent of components of vehicles assembled from Lanre Shittu Motors are currently sourced locally.

For him, all the lubricants, the grease, liquid-based materials used in vehicles are assembled and sourced locally, adding that materials for the box body, which is the buckets on the trucks, welders design are being fabricated together in about 30 per cent local content in some cases.

Calling on the Federal Government to urgently come up with policies that would encourage automobile component manufacturers to come and build factories in Nigeria, Shittu likened Nigeria to a big market for manufacturers and investors.

For their investments to birth positive fruits, he sought the need for the Federal Government to enact policy that would attract investors.

He said if the government places 100 per cent duty on imported versions of the products that are sourced locally, no Nigerian manufacturer of vehicles would be buying imported parts when the locally-made are cheaper and of the same quality.

Investors King gathered that LSM has the potential to manufacture 2500 vehicles annually and it became a household name with the MAC and JAC heavy-duty trucks in October 2018.

It is a certified KIA, NISSAN, and Jinbei Bus dealer before its full venture into vehicles manufacturing.

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