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LASG Evolves Template for Building Filling Stations



Shell filling station In Nigeria
  • LASG Evolves Template for Building Filling Stations

The Lagos State Commissioner for Physical Planning and Urban Development, Rotimi Ogunleye, says the state government is working on a new template for building filling stations, which will soon be released to the public.

The state government had last year placed an embargo on the approval and construction of filling stations in all parts of the state till further notice.

The immediate past Commissioner for Physical Planning and Urban Development, Wasiu Anifowose, had disclosed that the government had decided not to grant construction permit for filling stations pending the inventory of existing ones.

Ogunleye, at a stakeholders’ interactive session in Amuwo Odofin and Oriade, explained that the government placed an embargo on building approval for filling stations to prevent fire disasters.

According to him, the increasing rate at which filling stations are springing up in the state has become dangerous.

He said, “Recently, we placed an embargo on the building of filling stations in the country. We are passionate about what is happening in our state and we do not want cases of fire incidences. We have realised that people are just building filling stations in areas that are not meant for them, which is dangerous. Filling stations owners no longer obey the rule of 400 metres distance. The proliferation of the filling station needs to be controlled.

“We all know the flammability of products sold by the filling stations. We will inform the general public when we lift the embargo and begin to approve building plans for filling stations again. We are currently developing a procedure and an implementable code.”

The commissioner also appealed to residents of the state to seek adequate information on land and properties before purchasing them, adding that securing planning permit for land increases its value.

He also stated that residents must build in a way that would not disturb others in the state.

Ogunleye said, “Before now, people were not bothered about securing approval for their properties because of registered titles, but the Governor, Akinwunmi Ambode, has given permission for approval without registered titles. Now, with the family receipt and duty stamp by the commissioner, you will be given provisional approval.

“It is important that you get planning permit for any kind of construction you are embarking on, even if you are building with woods or irons. If you do not get approval before building, you will be penalised. We have given amnesty to land owners to come and obtain their permit between March 1 and August 31 without being punished. During this period, no one will be penalised. I urge people to key into the state government’s plan to boost investment and job creation through adequate planning.”

The Special Adviser to the Governor on Urban Development, Mrs. Yetunde Onabule, also cautioned residents of the state against encroaching on government’s land.

She said there were no vacant or free land in the state as plans had been made for most available land.

Onabule added, “We want a safe, secure, functional and useful community that can compete favourably with London, Dubai and other developed cities of the world. They achieved that because people in those countries engaged in planning. We should also plan well and obey government laws. We are the ones causing setbacks to the development of this state because we often disobey and build illegally.

“We also erect structures on drainage, under the staircase and places that threaten our safety. Lagos has plans for all the land you see. Do not think that they are free or unused; finances may just delay their usage and construction. All those places turned to roadside markets today have their own plans. They are reserved for certain purposes.”

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.


UAE Agrees to Issue Visas to Nigerians, FG Approves Emirates to Fly Into Nigeria



UAE to Issue Conditional Visa Visa to Nigerians

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has changed its position on Nigeria’s immigrants following the federal government’s decision to restrict flights from the Arab nation from operating in Nigeria’s airspace.

The Minister of Aviation, Sirika Hadi, disclosed this on Wednesday on his official Tweeter handle@hadisirika.

However, the minister said the commencement of the Visa issuance is condition precedent. Therefore, he pleaded with Nigerians to bear the unusual condition attached to the agreement reached by the Federal Government and the Arab nation.

The tweet read, “UAE has written to state that they agree to issue visas to Nigerians, consequently decision has been reached to allow Emirates to fly into Nigeria. Commencement of the Visa issuance is condition precedent. Please bear with this unusual situation. Many thanks.

United Arab Emirates had stopped the issuance of visas to Nigerians following COVID-19 outbreak in Nigeria and the rest of the world. In return, the Nigerian government restricted flights from the Arab nation from operating in the Nigerian airspace immediately it resumed operation.

The two countries have now reached an agreement to welcome immigrants from each other but the condition attached to visa issuance for Nigerians looking to travel to UAE remains unclear and vague at best for now.

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HealthPlus Founder, Alta Semper Foreign Investor In Leadership Battle



Healthplus legal battle with Alta Semper

HealthPlus Founder Bukky George and Alta Semper, the foreign Investor that invested $18 million In the company in Leadership Battle

HealthPlus Limited, one of Nigeria’s major integrated pharmacies, is enmeshed in a leadership tussle as a foreign Private Equity firm, Alta Semper, that invested $18 million in the company two years ago is pushing for a complete takeover and has terminated the appointment of Mrs. Bukky George, the Chief Executive Officer and the original founder of the company.

In a letter signed by two directors, Afsane Jetha and Zachary Fond, the majority of the company’s board on September 25, 2020 issued an instruction appointing one Mr Chidi Okoro as the new chief transformation officer to provide interim leadership for HealthPlus Limited.

The statement reads, “The difficult decision was made in full compliance with Nigerian law and following a long and drawn-out process of engagement, through which the board sought to address multiple issues with the way the company was being managed.

“Despite a series of significant breaches of the terms of Mrs George’s engagement as CEO, the board explored a range of options that would enable her to continue to play an alternate leadership role.”

The statement also said a larger number of the board determined that a change of leadership was necessary for HealthPlus to achieve its strategic goals.

It said, “Mrs George continues to serve on the board, while Mr Okoro oversees the day-to-day operations of the company.

“The decision of Alta Semper Capital to acquire majority control of HealthPlus in 2018 and its belief in the company’s potential to become a market leader, not just in Nigeria, but across the continent, is a testament to the strength of the HealthPlus brand.”

However, another statement titled ‘Attempted hostile takeover by foreign private equity firm’ and signed by the management of the company said the announcement is false, wrongful and should be ignored.

It said, “It is the handiwork of unscrupulous foreign and local businesswoman and businessmen intent on reaping where they have not sown simply because they now see opportunities from the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It is instructive to note that the chairman of the board of directors resigned two days ago and another director resigned five weeks ago. Both gentlemen had been displeased and frustrated by the impasse and its debilitating effect on the company, its fortunes, employees and, above all, the sheer injustice occasioned by it all.”

“Mrs Bukky George founded and grew HealthPlus against the odds to the household brand that it is today. She continues to run the company as founder and Chief Executive Officer.”

The management said in 2018 HealthPlus limited decided to partner with Alta Semper Capital to grow the company through fresh capital injection but since the deal was signed, it has been problematic.

According to them, the private equity company was to exit HealthPlus after five years as stated in the agreement reached two years ago. They also stated that George was ready to give a controlling stake to Alta Semper in order for the company to realise its investment.

Unbeknown to Mrs George and HealthPlus Nigeria, the collaboration was doomed from the beginning because of the greed of the owners of Alta Semper and their ulterior motive of hijacking a thriving pharmaceutical concern in Nigeria,” it added.

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Five Largest Cosmetic Brands Now Worth Over $40bn, Gained $4bn Despite COVID-19



World`s Five Largest Cosmetic Brands Worth Over $40bn in 2020, a $4bn Increase Despite COVID-19 Crisis

The COVID-19 outbreak has severely impacted the multi-billion-dollar cosmetics industry, causing thousands of closed stores and weak first and second-quarter sales.

However, the largest cosmetics companies and top beauty brands globally managed to increase their value despite the coronavirus crisis. According to data presented by Buy Shares, the world’s five largest cosmetic brands hit over $40bn value in 2020, a $4bn increase year-on-year. With $11.7bn in brand value, L’Oréal ranked as the largest cosmetic brand globally.

L’Oréal Brand Value Jumped by $1.3bn in 2020

In 2019, the brand value of the French multinational cosmetic giant L’Oréal amounted to $10.38bn, revealed the Brand Finance 2020 annual report. In the last twelve months, this figure rose by $1.3bn, an 13% increase year-on-year.

The report revealed that L’Oréal`s brand value increase had been primarily boosted by steady growth in sales across key markets in the last decade, especially in Asia, where over 20% of net sales are concentrated. The North American market sales rose by nearly 20%, mostly driven by CeraVe, SkinCeuticals, La Roche-Posay, and Vichy, which all delivered double-digit growth. The Group has also benefited from its digital transformation strategy, especially in Eastern Europe, where online sales surged by 50%.

Gillette ranked as the second-largest cosmetic brand in 2020. Statistics show the value of the US brand, owned by the multinational corporation Procter & Gamble increased by 18% in the last four years, rising from $7.1bn in 2016 to $8.48bn in 2020.

With almost $7.4bn in brand value, NIVEA represents the third-largest cosmetic brand globally. In 2016, the German personal care brand vas valued at $6.1bn. In the next twelve months, this figure rose to nearly $6.7bn. After a slight drop in 2018, the NIVEA brand value jumped to $6.8bn last year and continued rising. Statistics indicate the value of brand owned by the Hamburg-based company Beiersdorf Global AG rose by almost 20% in the last four years.

Estée Lauder Brand Value Surged by 41% in Two Years

The Brand Finance data also revealed that the brand value of Estée Lauder, the fourth-largest cosmetic brand in the world, jumped by 27% in 2020, the most significant increase among the top five companies. In 2018, the US skincare brand was worth $4.4bn. Over the last two years, this figure surged by 41% to nearly $6.3bn in 2020.

Statistics show that 2019 has been the most successful year in Estée Lauder’s history, with the global net sales reaching almost $15bn, an 8.6% increase year-over-year. Although the US corporation reported a net loss of $6 million due to the COVID-19 outbreak, statistics show its online sales skyrocketed in the first half of 2020.

The value of the US skincare producer Clinique, the fifth-largest cosmetic brand in the world, jumped by 15.4% year-over-year to $6.22bn in 2020.

Analyzed by geography, the United States represents the leading region globally, with $59.5bn in the total value of the eighteen leading cosmetic brands and 42% market share in 2020. French cosmetic companies ranked second with $40.1bn brand value and 28.3% market share. Japan, Germany, and the United Kingdom follow, with $12.6bn, $9.5bn, and $8.5bn value, respectively.

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