Nigerian state programs

Sona Group seeks Government’s ban or tariff increase on Sorghum, Barley

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Sona Group of Industries said it is seeking the Federal Government’s intervention to ban the importation of sorghum, barley and biscuits into the country as Nigeria produces enough to meet local needs. The call was made by the company’s Group Chief Operating Officer, Mr. Ashok Manghnani, in Ota, Ogun State, at the unveiling of the firm’s new production line by the Minister of State for Commerce, Industry and Trade, Aisha Abubakar. Manghnani noted that the group has invested over $650 million in over eight of its subsidiaries and employs over 8,000 personnel, adding that the group has not only the capacity to meet local demand but also has started exporting to Senegal, Ghana and Abidjan, with sights set on other African countries. He cautioned that allowing imports of goods that the country

Coca-Cola Nigeria unveils 50cl Eva Twist Bottle

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Coca-Cola Nigeria has announced the launch of a 50cl Eva Twist Bottled Water as it seeks to bolster its presence in the market. The soft drinks maker noted that the new bottle uses 18% less plastic which is in furtherance of its commitment to secure a friendly environment as well as serving consumers better. All up till now, Coca-Cola Eva bottled water only came in 75cl plastic bottles. Speaking on the new product, the company’s Marketing Manager, Patricia Jemibewon, said that the company acknowledged the essence of packaging in delivering products to consumers. “We envision a world in which our packaging is seen as a valuable resource for future use. Our packaging vision is zero waste, which means we are working to support initiatives that enable recovery and reuse of our packaging,” she

Malta Guinness Herbs Lite wins innovation and creativity award

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Malta Guinness Herbs Lite, a malt brand from the stables of Guinness Nigeria Plc has won the ‘Fair Competition and Creativity Nigeria Awards’ (FCCNA) for its innovation and creativity. The award ceremony which took place on Thursday, November 9th, 2017 at the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry was organized by the Consumer Rights Awareness Advancement and Advocacy Initiative (CRAAI). The Fair Competition and Creativity Nigeria Award (FCCNA) aims to encourage and reward companies and organizations that use innovation and creativity as tools to continually deliver superior products and services in the market place despite environmental challenges. “Our consumers are always at the heart of what we do, and we constantly strive to innovate with exciting products to delight them; we are happ

AB InBev restates commitment to Nigeria as it confirms construction of a new brewery

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Global beer behemoth Anheuser-Busch InBev has said it is committed to a long-term investment in Nigeria. This was as the firm announced in a press conference in Lagos on Wednesday, the construction of a new brewery in the country, located in Sagamu, Ogun State, at a cost of over $250 million. The company noted that the new brewery which is expected to be completed in 2018 would be its second largest in Africa and a testament to its long-term view of the country. Speaking on the company’s activities in Nigeria, Annabelle Degroot, Managing Director-designate, International Breweries Plc (IBPlc), said: “We are investing in a fourth brewery, a large brewery outside of Lagos, in the Sagamu area that will come on line next year and it’s our largest brewery in Africa outside of South Africa. Degr

AB InBev replaces North American operation head as US beer sales continue to fall

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Anheuser-Busch InBev announced on Monday the appointment of a new North American head, Michel Donkeris to replace João Castro Neves, a 20-year veteran of the Belgian/Brazilian brewer as beer sales in the U.S., the company’s most important market continue to lag. The company said in a statement that Mr. Neves who had been in charge of the North American division for two years would be leaving the company “to pursue other opportunities” and thanked him for his 22-years “distinguished career” at the firm. Mr. Doukeris, who is the brewer’s global chief sales officer, also a 20-year veteran of the firm has until now been in charge of the company’s Asian operations, helping to grow Budweiser globally and launched the firm’s premium beer business. Budweiser, one of the company’s global brands has

Sustainable investment joins the mainstream

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IN 2008, when she was in her mid-20s and sitting on a $500m inheritance, Liesel Pritzker Simmons asked her bankers about “impact investing”. They fobbed her off. “They didn’t understand what I meant and offered to screen out tobacco,” recalls the Hyatt Hotels descendant, philanthropist and former child film star. So she fired her bankers and advisers and set up her own family office, Blue Haven Initiative. It seeks investments that both offer market-rate returns and have a positive impact on society and the environment. “Financially it’s sensible risk mitigation,” she says. “Our philanthropy becomes far more efficient if we don’t need to undo damage done in our investment management.”Such ideas are gaining ground, particularly among the young. Fans of “socially responsible investment” (SRI

Australia is the new frontier for battery minerals

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Recession prooferFORGET the “resource curse”. Australia is blessed with the stuff. For more than a quarter of a century it has not had a recession, thanks largely to Chinese demand for its raw materials. It is only a few years since the end of one such China-led boom, in base metals such as iron ore. A new speculative flurry has started in minerals such as lithium, cobalt and nickel to feed another China-related craze—making batteries for electric vehicles (EVs).Ken Brinsden, an Australian mining engineer, says he pinches himself over these remarkable turns of fortune. Until 2015 he was a boss at Atlas Iron, which shipped low-grade iron ore to China. In 2011, at the height of the China-led supercycle, it had a valuation of A$3.5bn ($3.8bn). This has now shrunk to A$167m. But he now heads P

Japan is embracing nursing-care robots

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AT SHINTOMI nursing home in Tokyo, men and women sit in a circle following exercise instructions before singing along to a famous children’s song, “Yuyake Koyake” (“The Glowing Sunset”). They shout out and clap enthusiastically even though the activities are being led, not by a human fitness guru, but by Pepper, a big-eyed humanoid robot made by SoftBank, a telecoms and internet giant.Japan leads the world in advanced robotics. Many of its firms see great potential in “carerobos” that look after the elderly. Over a quarter of the population is over 65, the highest proportion of any country in the OECD. Care workers are in desperately short supply, and many Japanese have a cultural affinity with robots.For now the market is small. Although the government expects it will more than triple bet

Google can no longer count on political goodwill at home

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“WE USED to be so dismissed,” says Jeremy Stoppelman, the boss of Yelp, an online-review site which has waged a six-year-long battle against Google over how the online giant ranks its search results. Now American regulators are taking concerns about Google more seriously. On November 13th, Josh Hawley, Missouri’s attorney-general, launched an investigation into the search giant to determine whether it had violated the state’s antitrust and consumer-protection laws. Other entrepreneurs, too, congratulate Mr Stoppelman for speaking out about Google; they would not have done so before.Until then it had been chiefly in Europe where Google had trouble. In June the European Commission announced a record-breaking €2.4bn ($2.7bn) fine against it for anticompetitive behaviour, concluding it had sup

A purge of Russia’s banks is not finished yet

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Elvira’s mad againWHEN Elvira Nabiullina took over the governorship of the Russian Central Bank (CBR) in 2013, she faced a bloated and leaky finance sector with over 900 banks. Since then, more than 340 have lost their licences. Another 35 have been rescued, including, in recent months, Otkritie, once the country’s biggest private lender by assets, and B&N Bank, its 12th largest. The costs have been steep. According to Fitch, a ratings agency, over 2.7trn roubles ($46bn, some 3.2% of GDP in 2016) have been spent on loans to rescued banks and payments to insured depositors. Fitch reckons another few hundred banks could go before the clean-up concludes. More large private banks are whispered to be among them.The CBR has rightly been praised for preventing a wider crisis and undertaking a cle