Nampak's Nigeria plant nears completion

Nampak, Africa’s largest packaging company, is making positive progress towards the development of its permanent cartons manufacturing facility in Nigeria, with the plant scheduled to open at the end of next year. A temporary installation is

already up and running.

The investment follows a request from British American Tobacco for Nampak’s cartons and labels division, makers of cigarette boxes among a range of other products, to support its operations in the West African country.

In line with Nampak’s Africa growth strategy, which involves partnering with multi-national customers as they explore new markets, the company approved commencement of the feasibility process during 2003.

Midway through the study, the Nigerian government announced its intention to restrict the importation of packaging.
Even though an extension to the prohibition was obtained, Nampak was nevertheless required to have a factory working prior to the December 2004 deadline.

The company air-freighted a gravure press from Europe, enabling it to support BAT’s requirements from the date stipulated by the government.

The new temporary facility in Ibadan, approximately one hour north of Lagos, has been supplying BAT since February 2005. Four South Africans are based on-site and approximately 60 Nigerians will be employed as the project develops.

The total investment is estimated to be in the region of R150-million.

BAT is one of Nampak’s major customers, and the terms of the agreement governing the Nigeria relationship are expected to deliver real value to the company’s shareholders over the 10-year period.

As soon as the plant is fully functional, Nampak plans to explore other opportunities in the West Africa region, specifically in Benin, Togo and Côte d’Ivoire. Such opportunities may take the form of entirely new markets or export destinations. - I-Net Bridge