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Amazon Plans to Inform Employees Who Will Lose Their Jobs Starting January 18

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Amazon

American multinational technology company Amazon plans to inform employees who will lose their jobs starting January 18, 2023.

The company’s CEO Andy Jassy disclosed that it had to share its job cut plans early with affected employees after the information was leaked by one of their teammates.

He disclosed that the company initially wanted to wait to communicate about this outcome until it can speak to employees who will be laid off, but has been forced to do so.

The CEO Wrote,

“We typically wait to communicate about these outcomes until we can speak with the people who are directly impacted.

“However, because one of our teammates leaked this information externally, we decided it was better to share this news earlier so you can hear the details directly from me.”

Amazon proposed job cuts have taken a new dimension after the e-commerce giant disclosed that it will cut more jobs than it had initially planned.

Recall that last year November, Amazon had initially planned to lay off 10,000 workers, after it disclosed that it added workers too quickly, especially in warehouses as consumers shifted to online ordering.

At the end of the third quarter (Q3) of 2022, the company had employed 1.54 million people.

As the global economic outlook continues to worsen, the e-commerce company disclosed that it has been forced to increase the number of its workforce that will be laid off, noting that most cuts will come in the Stores and People, Experience, Technology (PXT) groups, as well as the human resources department.

The executives which recently met to discuss how the downsizing of its workforce will help the company revealed that the layoffs will help it pursue long-term opportunities with a stronger cost structure.

They however acknowledged the job cuts as a difficult decision, noting that these role eliminations are difficult for people, which they do not take it lightly or underestimate how much they might affect the lives of those who are impacted.

Last year, Amazon was faced with dwindling revenue as it battled several economic challenges such as rising inflation, fuel cost, and other macroeconomic factors.

This forced it to slap a 5% surcharge on its online sellers.

The e-commerce giant suffered losses in year-over-year income as post-pandemic shopping habits and inflation affected its revenue.

In its third quarter (Q3) 2022 earnings report, its operating income decreased to $2.5 billion in Q3 2022 compared to $4.9 billion in the same quarter last year, while net income dipped to $2.9 billion versus $3.2 billion during Q3 2021.

The company founder Jeff Bezos who has been critical of President Joe Biden’s economic policies faulted him for being disingenuous about the forces driving prices higher.

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Merger and Acquisition

Access Bank Plc Expands Footprint in Tanzania with ABCT Acquisition

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Access bank

Access Bank Plc has taken a significant stride in expanding its presence in East Africa through the acquisition of a majority equity stake in African Banking Corporation of Tanzania (ABCT) Limited, a subsidiary of Atlas Mara Limited.

The acquisition, which was completed recently, underscores Access Bank’s ambition to become one of the leading financial institutions in Africa.

The transaction not only solidifies its position within the East African banking landscape but also aligns with its broader goal of enhancing intra-African trade and fostering economic development across the continent.

Commenting on the transaction, Roosevelt Ogbonna, Managing Director of the Bank, said: This strategic move represents a notable step towards setting a railroad in Tanzania for intra-African trade within the East African region, Africa and the rest of the world. It underscores our commitment to creating a robust East African banking network, driving positive change and innovation. We are excited about the opportunities this acquisition presents for our operations in Tanzania and are eager to leverage our
combined strengths to deliver exceptional financial solutions and experiences to our customers.

Commenting on the transaction, John Imani, Managing Director, African Banking Corporation (Tanzania) Limited, said: “The completion of our transaction with Access Bank Plc, not only underscores the strong confidence of Access Bank in our operations and the Tanzanian market but delivers new and exciting opportunities for our customers, employees, and stakeholders. The new entity is poised to enhance our service offerings, leveraging Access Bank’s extensive resources and expertise to deliver even greater value to our clients. We look forward to an exciting and prosperous future as part of the Access Bank family, driving economic growth and financial inclusion across Tanzania.”

Following the acquisition, Access Bank plans to merge ABCT with the consumer, private, and banking business of Standard Chartered Bank Tanzania, another entity it is acquiring.

This strategic integration aims to create Access Bank Tanzania, positioning it as a prominent player in the country’s banking sector.

The combined entity will offer a comprehensive range of banking products and services tailored to meet the evolving needs of Tanzanian businesses and individuals.

Access Bank’s expansion into Tanzania is expected to stimulate competition in the local banking industry, spur innovation, and deepen financial inclusion.

With a robust presence across multiple African markets, Access Bank continues to demonstrate its commitment to driving sustainable growth and fostering economic resilience across the continent.

As Access Bank Tanzania prepares to launch under its new structure, stakeholders are anticipating enhanced banking solutions and increased accessibility that will contribute to Tanzania’s economic prosperity in the years ahead.

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Merger and Acquisition

Tolaram Acquires 58.02% Stake in Guinness Nigeria from Diageo

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Guiness

Tolaram Group has acquired a 58.02% stake in Guinness Nigeria from Diageo Plc. for ₦81.60 per share, representing approximately a 60% premium over Guinness Nigeria’s closing price of ₦50 on Monday.

Announced on June 11, 2024, the acquisition underscores Tolaram’s commitment to expanding its footprint in Nigeria’s robust consumer market.

Diageo, the UK-based beverage giant, will retain ownership of the Guinness brand, which will be licensed to Guinness Nigeria, now under Tolaram’s majority control, through long-term agreements.

Under the terms of the deal, Tolaram will initiate a mandatory takeover offer in compliance with Nigerian Exchange regulations.

However, Guinness Nigeria will continue to be publicly listed, maintaining its presence on the Nigerian Stock Exchange.

A statement from Guinness Nigeria highlighted the terms of the agreement, confirming the continued production of the Guinness brand along with Diageo’s locally manufactured ready-to-drink and mainstream spirits under license and royalty agreements.

The transaction is slated for completion in 2025, pending necessary regulatory approvals.

Commenting on the acquisition, Sajen Aswani, Tolaram’s Chief Executive, said: “Our partnership with Diageo to jointly grow Guinness Nigeria underscores our commitment to build on our strong presence and heritage in Nigeria, cultivated over decades of dedication and unwavering confidence in the future of Africa. We take a long-term view on all our investments, and this partnership reflects our optimism on the exciting opportunities that lie ahead across the continent.”

Diageo CEO Debra Crew echoed Aswani’s sentiment “I’m excited to announce our new partnership with Tolaram. Guinness has been Nigeria’s favourite beer for nearly 75 years. Tolaram shares this passion for Guinness and for Nigeria, making them the perfect partners as we continue to grow our business and seek to delight even more consumers in the country.”

This strategic acquisition is expected to bolster Guinness Nigeria’s market position, leveraging Tolaram’s extensive experience in the consumer goods sector to drive growth and innovation.

The partnership aims to enhance the availability and appeal of Guinness and other Diageo products in Nigeria, contributing to the country’s economic development and consumer satisfaction.

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Dangote Refinery Shifts Petrol Production Start to July

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Dangote Refinery

Africa’s largest oil refinery, the Dangote Refinery, has postponed the start of its premium motor spirit (PMS) production, commonly known as petrol, from June to mid-July.

This adjustment was confirmed by Aliko Dangote, President and CEO of the refinery, during a press briefing at the $20 billion facility in Lagos on Monday.

Dangote attributed the change in the production date to minor delays encountered in the final stages of the project.

“We had a bit of delay, but PMS will start coming out by 10 to 15 of July. But then we want to keep it in tank to make sure that it settles. So by the third week of July, we’ll be able to take it into the market,” he stated.

The delay necessitated moving the originally proposed production commencement from June to mid-July.

The refinery will begin production of petrol between July 10 and 15, with supply to local marketers expected to commence from the third week of July.

Backstory and Expectations

Initially, various reports had predicted the refinery’s petrol production would start in June. Standard and Poor’s Global (S&P Global) Commodities Insights analysts had forecasted a later timeline, suggesting production would ramp up in the fourth quarter of this year.

Despite the predictions, Dangote’s team has been aiming for a mid-year start.

Exportation and Domestic Supply

In addition to the upcoming petrol production, the Dangote Refinery has already begun supplying jet fuel and diesel to domestic marketers. Furthermore, the facility recently exported its first jet fuel cargo to Europe.

The inaugural shipment, loaded onto the vessel “Doric Breeze,” departed from the Lekki Free Zone in Lagos on May 27 and is en route to Rotterdam, Netherlands, according to data from S&P Global Commodities at Sea.

Implications for Nigeria

The Dangote Refinery is poised to significantly reduce Nigeria’s reliance on imported petroleum products. Despite being Africa’s most populous country and largest oil producer, Nigeria imports almost all of its fuel due to insufficient refining infrastructure.

The new refinery aims to bridge this gap and enhance the country’s energy security.

Future Prospects

On future prospects, Aliko Dangote said “What we are doing is to be able to export petroleum products to anywhere and compete with any company. By next week, we’ll be producing about ten thousand ppm in terms of diesel, which now what’s happening is that we import about 2 to 3 thousand. We will produce the best.”

As Nigeria anticipates the mid-July start for petrol production, the Dangote Refinery is set to play a pivotal role in transforming the nation’s oil and gas sector, bolstering domestic supply, and enhancing its position in the global energy market.

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