Nestlé last week announced it will invest CHF 150 million (US$141 million) in the Equatorial African Region (EAR) over the next three years.
Nestlé will also increase its distribution capacity in the region by opening 13 new distribution facilities and more than double its work force by creating 750 new jobs by 2012.
Paul Bulcke, Nestlé CEO, who announced the investment at a press conference in Kenyan capital Nairobi, said: “Nestlé is committed to unlock the business opportunities and to promote growth in Equatorial Africa. With 400 million people and an emerging middle-class with rising purchasing power, this region has major potential for Nestlé.
“By opening new factories in the region, we are closer to our consumers and can better adapt our products to their taste and nutritional needs. At the same time, we share our success by sourcing locally, creating new local employment and helping in the further development of the region,” he said.
Frits van Dijk, Nestlé executive vice president responsible for Zone Asia, Oceania, Africa and Middle East, who also attended the press conference added: “Our strategy in the region is based on a specific business model that supports local sourcing of raw material, production and distribution of our products. Following this strategy, we recently launched products like Maggi cubes and Nestea, and also re-invigorated and re-launched our Milo brand in the EAR market.”
This new investment reaffirms Nestlé’s commitment to the EAR which includes a CHF 40 million ($38 million) investment in the DRC announced earlier last week. The company will build a new factory in the Congolese capital Kinshasa, which is earmarked to produce culinary and coffee well-known brands including Maggi and Nescafé 3-in-1. Other products offered under the dairy, beverages and some coffee categories will be tailored to respond to local market needs. Currently operating a distribution centre in Kinshasa since September 2009, Nestlé will expand the total number of employees to 300 by 2012.
Nestlé has also committed an investment of CHF 30 million ($28 million) to build a new factory and distribution centre in Beira, Mozambique. The factory – which will support the increasing demand in Mozambique and neighbouring countries for Nestlé products including culinary, coffee and other beverages – will create over 260 new jobs within three years.
In Angola, Nestlé will invest CHF 25 million ($23.5 million) in a new factory which is expected to bring the total number of employees to 145 by 2012. Currently, Nestlé sources products for the Angolan market from other markets such as Portugal and Brazil. Angola is important for Nestlé, as an emerging market with a strong economy and a growing purchasing power.
While in Kenya, Nestlé is investing CHF 30 million ($28 million) in the expansion of its Nairobi factory including a new production line to support its newly-launched food service division, Nestlé Professional. The factory will supply Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi, Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, Malawi and Zambia.
In addition, in Zimbabwe, Nestlé is investing in the expansion and upgrade of its Harare factory at a cost of CHF 25 million ($23.5 million). This is expected to boost its production capacity and help supply other regional markets such as Zambia and Mozambique.
Nestlé EAR – which is a wholly owned subsidiary of Nestlé S.A. in Vevey, Switzerland – was set up in 2008. It oversees the Nestlé operations in 20 countries including Kenya, Angola, Burundi, Comoros, Democratic Republic of Congo, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Madagascar, Mauritius, Mozambique, Malawi, Republic of Congo, Rwanda, Seychelles, Somalia, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.