Fatgbems Group, a prominent player in Nigeria’s downstream oil and gas sector, has announced a strategic diversification into the agro-allied export processing business. With an initial commitment of $10 million, the group is poised to venture into new horizons, tapping into the potential of the agro-allied sector.
According to businessday.ng, Its decision to move into agric business was principally informed by the huge opportunity in that sector as exposed by experts.
Speaking to some newsmen recently in Lagos, Ayodele Odulaja, the Chief Operating Officer of the company who relied on experts analysis said by 2030, the agricultural business in Africa will worth $1trillion. “ The question we are asking ourselves is what will be our share”, he said.
He said the company is working with some international finance organisations and local banks in Nigeria to finance the project.
He said the diversification will not only expand Fatgbems source of income but it will guarantee foreign exchange into Nigerian economy and further reduce pressure on Naira.
In the short term, the company will be processing cashew for export to markets like India, Europe and other parts of Africa.
Odulaja disclosed that “to further strengthen local production, we have acquired approximately 250 acres of prime agricultural land in Ogun State, Nigeria. This land will be instrumental in realizing our vision of bolstering cashew farming in Nigeria and contributing to the nation’s agricultural landscape.”
“In alignment with our vision, it is important to note that Nigeria is the second largest producer of raw cashew nuts (RCN) in Africa, after Cote D’Ivoire. As of February 2023, the annual production of cashew nuts in Nigeria stood at 300,000 metric tons. Fatgbems Agro-Allied is poised to play a significant role in enhancing this figure and boosting Nigeria’s position as a key player in the global cashew industry,” he added.
“Our intent initially was to plug into an existing industrial park in Benin Republic, but when we suppose to sign in, the opportunity closed. Another one is coming up in Cote DIvoire and in Ogun State Nigeria, and we are working with those behind it to be part of it”.
What that does is that they would have provided some of these machineries but of course we have our own equity contribution. Then the cashew will be provided which is high quality and what we do is to process it and get them ready for export”.
Odulaja said in the first instance Fatgbems is spcialising in cashew as that is where ”we find low hanging fruit and when other opportunities come we will deal with it”.
Odulaja also said that the company plans to expand the business frontier with diverse interests in Petroleum Marketing, Automotive Services & Tyre Trading & Marketing, Agro-Allied, and Real Estate.
Another arm of the group is the Fatgbems Properties, which Odulaja said is committed to creating exceptional living and working spaces. The company according to him, “is poised to spread across major industries and in Nigeria with growing need for affordable homes and large industrial layout.
Fatgbems Petroleum Company Limited is a member of the Fatgbems Group of company, incorporated as an independent petroleum marketing company under the late founder and first Chairman Alhaji, Fatai Gbemisola in November 1994.