Copyright © Tolaram 2015

NEWSROOM

October 2010

Inauguration of Kubwa Substation


Read More... NIGERIA: On 28 September 2010, MBH Power commissioned a 2 x 60MVA, 132/33KV transmission substation at Kubwa, Abuja, Nigeria. President Goodluck Jonathan graced the inauguration of the new substation.
October 2010

Tolaram honoured with Special Mention Award at CSR Awards 2010


Read More... SINGAPORE: Delegates from Tolaram Group Singapore attended the Second International Singapore Compact CSR Summit held on 6 and 7 October 2010. The Group received a Special Mention Award for its Community Development efforts in Nigeria and Estonia.
August 2010

Lekki Port gain support from the Federal Government of Nigeria


Read More... NIGERIA: The Federal Government of Nigeria pledged its support for the new Lekki Seaport project being developed by the Group. This was communicated by the Federal Minister of Transport, Alhaji Yusuf Suleiman, who recently visited the site of the proposed Port project at Ibeju-Lekki.
July 2010

Gold Sponsor for Africa-Singapore Business Forum


Read More... SINGAPORE: Tolaram Group was one of the Gold Sponsors for the Africa-Singapore Business Forum organised by International Enterprise (IE) Singapore and the Singapore Business Federation on 14 and 15 July 2010. The conference was attended by more than 450 delegates with representation from more than 10 African countries.
May 2010

Acquisition of former KGB Headquarters


Read More... ESTONIA: The Group acquired Pagari One, the former KGB headquarters in Tallinn. The development plan is to convert the building into a block of luxurious high-end inner city apartments consisting approximately 50 units with roof attic and a basement as well as commercial cum F&B outfits.
May 2010

Corporate Headquarters relocated to 1A@IBP


Read More... SINGAPORE: On 21 May 2010, The Tolaram Group shifted its Corporate Headquarters in Singapore from 5 Shenton Way to 1A International Business Park.
April 2011

Hypo Bleach launched


Read More... NIGERIA: Hypo bleach was launched nationwide on 20 April 2011. It is available in 75ml sachets and 500ml bottles.
January 2011

New projects and expansion of Dufil


Read More... NIGERIA: As part of a backward integration plan, Dufil has commenced construction of a flour mill at Port Harcourt in December 2010. The building of a third manufacturing facility for instant noodles has also begun at Kaduna, in the northern part of Nigeria, in January 2011.
August 2012

Signing of sub-concession agreement for the Container Terminal at Lekki Port


Read More... NIGERIA: The sub-concession for the Lekki International Container Terminal Services (LICTS) at Lekki Port has been signed. LICTS was granted approval to develop and operate the container terminal on an exclusive basis for a 21-year period.
May 2012

Lekki Port signs EPC contract with China Harbour Engineering


Read More... SINGAPORE: Lekki Port LFTZ Enterprise (LPLE) inked the Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) contract with China Harbour Engineering Company Ltd (CHEC) on 11 May 2012. Under the agreement, CHEC will be responsible for all phases of development, from design to construction and commissioning, of the project’s infrastructure and facilities.
May 2012

Lekki Port signs MoU with ICTSI


Read More... SINGAPORE: Lekki Port LFTZ Enterprise and International Container Terminal Service Inc (ICTSI) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the operation of the Lekki Port container terminal. ICTSI has been selected as the preferred operator for a sub-concession on an exclusive basis for 21 years.
May 2012

Launch of Power Pasta


Read More... NIGERIA: Power Pasta, the latest product from the stable of Dufil, was launched amongst much fanfare. With the promise to “Boost your Energy”, Power Pasta is available in 500g packets. The product has been approved by the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control and is duly certified by the Standards Organisation of Nigeria.
December 2013

Lekki Deep Sea Port receives approval from the Federal Government of Nigeria


Read More... NIGERIA: The construction of the Lekki Deep Sea Port has been approved by the Federal Government of Nigeria. The new port will put an end to the congestion at various ports, and create over 162,000 jobs for the Nigerian economy.
August 2013

Horizon Pulp & Paper celebrates its 75th year of operations


Read More... ESTONIA: The Kehra paper mill began its operations in 1938 and was revived in 1995 by Tolaram Group. Today, it is known as Horizon Pulp & Paper and the company recently celebrated its 75th anniversary. It now has over 400 employees and exports its products to more than 55 countries.
August 2013

Launch of Power Oil


Read More... NIGERIA: Dufil Prima recently unveiled a new brand of vegetable oil, Power Oil, into the Nigerian market. It is available in several sizes including 140ml sachets, 750ml pet bottles and three-litre bottles.
July 2013

Forbes: VConnect is one of Africa’s hottest start-ups


Read More... NIGERIA: Deepankar Rustagi, the founder of VConnect, Nigeria’s largest online business directory and local search engine, was recently interviewed by Forbes recently. Rustagi explained his business model, shared his start-up story and gave a glimpse into VConnect’s future plans.
December 2014

Tolaram Group collaborates with GE to bring solar power to noodles plant in Nigeria


Read More... NIGERIA: GE will supply Northern Noodles Ltd., a subsidiary of DUFIL and Tolaram Group, with solar technology to reduce emissions at the noodles manufacturing plant in Kaduna, Nigeria.
The 575 kilowatt photovoltaic (PV) plant will be integrated with the company’s existing diesel generators and micro-grid system. Once installed, the hybrid solution is expected to deliver 18 percent reduction in diesel fuel and associated emissions at the site.
“Tolaram strives to be an early adopter of advanced technology, and solar energy looks extremely promising. Our goal is to reduce our carbon footprint and create sustainable industrial growth,” explains Mr. Sajen Aswani, CEO of Tolaram Group. “Given GE’s expertise in renewable technology, end-to-end offering, and like-minded commitment to growth here in Nigeria, it was a natural collaboration.
September 2014

Centre for African Studies launched in Singapore


Read More... SINGAPORE: Tolaram Group is one of the five donors for the NTU-SBF Centre for African Studies. The centre is the first of its kind in Southeast Asia and aims to promote an understanding of Africa at the economic and policy level to help foster stronger relationships between Singapore and the continent.
June 2014

Commissioning of Calabar Substation


Read More... NIGERIA: MBH Power recently commissioned its 2 x 150MVA, 330KV/132KV Calabar Substation. The occasion was graced by the Minister of State for Power, Alhaji Mohammed Wakil, on 21 June 2014. The substation at Adiabo is meant to boost the power supply in Calabar and its environment.
June 2014

Bhumi Puja for Arzuria and office warming for our new office


Read More... INDONESIA: The traditional Bhumi Puja (ground ceremony) was performed on 19 June 2014 for Arzuria, the Group’s real estate project in central Jakarta. The new development will be a 32-storey upscale residential complex, occupying 6,800 sq.m.of land. The Group’s new Indonesian headquarters was also officially inaugurated on that day.
June 2014

Launch of Minimie snack


Read More... NIGERIA: Dufil Prima recently launched a local snack, Minimie Chin Chin, to the Nigerian market. Made with ingredients like milk, butter and wheat, it is a crunchy and tasty snack for all occasions.
June 2014

Tunaiku goes “live”


Read More... INDONESIA: Tunaiku, which translates to “my cash” in English, is an Internet-based consumer finance lending business, launched in June 2014. The services enables borrowers to apply for loans online using their smart devices such as computers, tablets and mobile phones.
April 2014

Pagari One bags awards


Read More... ESTONIA: Pagari One was recognised as the Best Restored National Heritage Monument 2013 and also received the Medal of Honour for the restoration of the Pagari One heritage protection building.
September 2015

Arla Foods in joint venture with Tolaram Group to market Dano Milk in Nigeria


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News release: Tolaram Group, the Singapore-based business conglomerate  behind several household brands in Nigeria, like Indomie, Minimie, Power Oil, Power Pasta and Hypo Bleach, has signed a partnership agreement with Arla Foods of Denmark, one of the world’s largest Dairy Company, and the owner of Dano– another brand known for its quality in Nigeria.

The Joint Venture Company, “TG Arla Dairy Products” has been setup as a 50:50 partnership and will initially focus on powdered milk and liquid milk, which is accelerating in demand around the big cities. The company believes that the market is also ready for more value added products as the middle class is growing rapidly.

The new joint venture that started production in September, will handle packaging and promotion of Arla products in Nigeria. The state of the art manufacturing facility has been set up at an estimated cost of N4 billion at Lekki in Lagos. When working at full capacity, the factory will help provide employment to more than 1000 persons.

The sales and distribution of the various products from this facility will be carried out by Multipro Consumer Products Limited, another Tolaram Group company specializing in distribution of some of the biggest Nigerian consumer brands like Indomie, Hypo, Power Oil, Power Pasta & Minimie noodles and snacks.

Whilst announcing Tolaram Group’s agreement to enter the partnership, the Managing Director of Tolaram Group, Africa - Mr. Haresh Aswani said, ”Tolaram’s partnership with Arla is aimed at providing further impetus to our efforts in providing affordable and wholesome nutrition for Nigerians, especially for the children.. This also fits Tolaram Group’s plans to bring in more Foreign Direct Investments and long-term businesses into Nigeria.”

Steen Hadsbjerg, head of Arla’s business region in Sub Saharan Africa said, “With the improved living standards, families are increasingly demanding safe and affordable nutrition. West Africa faces a milk deficit, which gives Arla an opportunity to provide milk powder and other dairy products that meet the consumers’ needs. We are here to build a long-term business, and that requires strong local partners. We are therefore pleased to join with Tolaram, a leading FMCG company in Nigeria”.

As their aim stated, the JV will continuously monitor impact on local milk production through a comprehensive CSR monitoring program and will look at opportunities for promoting the development of local milk production & supply through provision of technology and know how support in cooperation with the Federal Government of Nigeria.

As part of its strategy to enhance its portfolio in its other African geographies, Tolaram Group and Arla aim to jointly investigate dairy opportunities in west and southern Africa. This presents a win-win situation for both the parties who have a shared vision for growth in Africa.


The Tolaram Arla venture will rely on a deep understanding of the Nigerian consumer goods market, extensive distribution network of Tolaram Group and the research & development technology, global production and sourcing capabilities of Arla Foods.

September 2015

Kellogg and Tolaram Group Announce New, Long-Term Partnership to Significantly Expand Presence in Africa


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Kellogg Company (NYSE: K) announced today a new, long-term partnership with leading food company Tolaram Africa, significantly increasing Kellogg's presence in the growing African market and advancing the company's breakfast, snacks and emerging market strategies to drive future growth.  

Highlights of today's announcement include:

  • The creation of a joint venture between Kellogg Company and Tolaram Africa to develop snacks and breakfast foods for the West African market.
  • The acquisition of 50 percent of Multipro, a premier sales and distribution company in Nigeria and Ghana.
  • The right to acquire a stake in Tolaram Africa Foods (which owns 49 percent of Dufil Prima) in the future. Dufil Prima manufactures and markets several leading food brands, including Indomie noodles, which are often consumed at breakfast, as well as Minimie snacks, Power oil and Power pasta.

"As a region that is experiencing explosive growth, with a population of almost one billion people and an economy that is expected to more than double over the next 10 years, Sub-Saharan Africa provides tremendous opportunity for our company," said John Bryant, Chairman and CEO, Kellogg Company.

"Tolaram Africa has built a highly successful consumer products business and today, it is one of the largest food companies in Nigeria," said Bryant. "Tolaram has a great track record of building beloved consumer brands, including the market leader Indomie noodles, and fueling their growth.  This partnership is an excellent strategic fit for Kellogg."

Multipro, established in 1997, has a strong sales and distribution infrastructure in Nigeria. Headquartered in Lagos, the company provides access to approximately 1,000 exclusive distributors, 2600 employees and operates 19 warehouses, across six locations.  It is also establishing similar networks in other key African countries including Democratic Republic of Congo, Ivory Coast, Cameroon and Ethiopia.

"Kellogg's well-known and iconic brands and our research and development expertise, combined with Tolaram's strong local sales, marketing, supply chain and distribution capabilities, positions us to become a breakfast and snacks leader in a thriving market," said Amit Banati, President, Kellogg Asia Pacific.

"Kellogg is a world leader in its categories and has successfully built brands that are synonymous with it. We're pleased to have entered into this partnership, as we share similar values and an aligned vision for Africa, a continent we have been operating in for over 35 years. This is another significant step towards providing affordable and wholesome nutrition for our expanding consumer base," said Sajen Aswani, CEO, Tolaram Group.

Source: PRNewswire, ' Kellogg Company and Tolaram Announce New, Long-Term Partnership to Significantly Expand Presence in Africa’, Bloomberg Business 15 September. Available from: <http://www.bloomberg.com>. [15 September 2015].

 

June 2015

Understanding the Dynamics of Africa


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Singaporean group Tolaram has operated in Nigeria for the past 38 years, greatly diversifying its operations to now embrace a gamut of sectors, from manufacturing foodstuffs to being involved in power distribution. African Business spoke to Harish Aswani, the company's managing director in Nigeria, about the Group’s approach to business on the continent.

African Business: Where do you now operate in Africa?

Since coming to Nigeria nearly 40 years ago, Tolaram is now in a number of countries, in Ghana, Congo, Cote d’Ivoire and Tanzania and we had an office in Ethiopia. We use them as launch pads to look at the markets, how we can do business there, to gauge the political climate, the economic climate.

We send someone there to stay perhaps for a year and then return to Singapore and tell us what they have learned about the country. But Nigeria is perhaps 80% of our business. We built the Lekki Port there, the first port in Nigeria to be privately built.

It is the country’s largest port, and offers the biggest potential container footprint and accessibility facilities for larger shipping vessels, compared to any port in the region. The project is worth $1.5bn and is estimated to generate over 150,000 jobs in Nigeria.

In addition, we have diversified into road transport logistics, fast moving consumer goods such as the manufacture of noodles, infrastructure, power distribution and ICT. We have a team that manages each sector.

Do you see policy consistency when governments change, such as happened in Nigeria?

I think business carries on. As long as you have been doing clean business, no one comes to disturb you. Understanding the dynamics of the country you are working in is vital. We started off in textiles, but have diversified greatly. Foodstuffs is a case in point. We introduced noodles to the Nigerian market and they were practically unknown. But they have been very successful, and we now have two mills producing the flour and we have moved into palm oil, we have our own seeds.

Some infrastructure projects take decades to develop. Can these really generate the revenues that are required?

Well, let’s take the case of Lekki Port and the Special Economic Zones. The business model is based on a landlord concept where you build the infrastructure and then put the operations out to tender. We did that and had 19 companies bidding. One won the tender. The model we had was a good one, a win-win for everyone. It was a very robust model economically, and we had financial and engineering consultants advising us.

I am interested in the way you moved from textiles to FMCG generally, to massive infrastructure projects. Was it because you experienced the constraints of poor infrastructure and identified the opportunity?

Yes, that was a great part of it. And you know president Obasanjo was very keen that we should develop the port. He loves Singapore. He gave us the approval and said ‘build it’.

Some parts of Nigeria have been trying to replicate the Singapore model. Realistically, is that viable?

What you should do is look at the policies that Singapore adopted. Look at the free port that was built 50 years ago. If you build the infrastructure, people will use it. Consider Nigeria’s container throughput. It is just 1m units a year for a population of 160 million. That’s one of the lowest per capita container throughputs in the world. Think of the potential!


Source: 'Understanding The Dynamics Of Africa', African Business, Issue No. 420, pp. 12-13.

April 2015

Tolaram Group supports The LKY Musical as Production Sponsor


Read More... SINGAPORE: Tolaram Group is the Production Sponsor of The LKY Musical, which follows the life of Mr Lee Kuan Yew from his early days at Raffles College to the founding of independent Singapore. This musical is produced by Metropolitan Productions, is written by Dick Lee, with lyrics by Stephen Clark. The main cast of The LKY Musical was unveiled today (April 13) where Sharon Au will be playing Mdm Kwa Geok Choo opposite Adrian Pang, who was previously announced to play the titular role. Video of the press conference: https://youtu.be/rtOxwRiCutQ
March 2016

In Nigeria, Small-Scale Solar Plants Are Letting The Sunshine In


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Innovative technology links three solar power projects that GE is undertaking in Nigeria for the Tolaram Group. Until recently, small-scale rooftop solar projects have been under-utilised in the country, with diesel generators a far more common source of primary energy supply to these locations. Now, advances in solar technology are making this clean energy more affordable.

The first Africa installation of GE’s solar hybrid technology will go ahead later this year at the Northern Noodles factory in Kaduna, northern Nigeria. The state of the art manufacturing facility is run by Dufil Prima Foods, a Tolaram subsidiary.

Since it was built in 2012, the automated noodle factory has been a completely off-grid operation, powered by its own diesel generators and drawing no electricity from the Nigerian grid. GE Solar is installing a photovoltaic (solar PV) renewable energy plant, which will integrate with the existing diesel generating system for a 24/7 uninterrupted power supply.

Adding this 382.8 kW kilowatt solar hybrid system will reduce the rate of diesel consumption at the plant site thereby drastically reducing the customer’s opex, while also reducing emissions from the diesel operation. GE expects the plant to achieve an annual 18% reduction in both costs and emissions.

Noodles are becoming an increasingly popular food in Nigeria, and the factory is the largest noodle producer in Africa.

“This installation is an example of what’s possible for solar technology on a smaller commercial scale,” explained Jeff Wyatt, general manager of GE’s solar and energy storage business when the solar hybrid system was contracted.

“In many regions where there is no grid, or power from the utility grid is unreliable or expensive, manufacturers need a reliable, integrated solution they can count on. The economics of PV hybrid are attractive,” he said. As a result, companies are able to take advantage of a sustainable long-term energy solution.

“Tolaram strives to be an early adopter of advanced technology, and solar energy looks extremely promising. Our goal is to reduce our carbon footprint and create sustainable industrial growth,” Sajen Aswani, CEO of Tolaram Group, explained on the group’s LinkedIn page.

Two more Tolaram sites, in Lagos, received solar PV systems that can switch automatically between three power sources – solar, diesel generator and grid electricity – to achieve maximum fuel and cost savings. These pilot sites, sponsored by GE Ventures Licensing, are designed to test new business and technology models focused on small commercial solar customers in Africa.

The electronic controller integrates an electric battery system that stores solar power during the day for use at night, extending the use of solar power beyond daylight hours and bringing about further savings.

The two installations are at the Tolaram Group headquarters, incorporating a retail shop, in Lagos and at a second retail shop in Rotimi. Adding a renewable energy power supply, with battery power throughout the night, has been a huge boost as the area has grid electricity for 12 hours a day or less.

The Lagos installation is capable of delivering 10kVA of continuous power, with a short term peak capability of a high as 30kVA. The smaller installation at Rotimi can deliver 2kVA of power, with a peak capability of 5kVA.

“These pilot plants have only been in operation since November 2015, and once we have completed our assessments we will consider expanding the offering,” said Brian Selby of GE Ventures Licensing.

“It’s an exciting and innovative design, making energy available around the clock from the least-cost energy source. While the system intelligently uses electricity as and when available from the grid or a fuel generator, it always prioritises the use or solar electricity, be it directly from the sun or as stored in the battery,” he said.

A further advantage is that the system does not require any technical training to operate. In addition, GE can offer remote monitoring for data collection and analysis across the installations.

GE recently renewed its “company to country” agreement with Nigeria for another five years. This is part of a larger GE plan to invest $2 billion in Africa by 2018. That will help Nigeria as it pushes to install 40 gigawatts (40 000MW) of additional power generating capacity by 2020.

Source: GE Reports Sub-Saharan Africa, "In Nigeria, Small-Scale Solar Plants Are Letting The Sunshine In". http://www.gereportsafrica.com/post/140790396868/in-nigeria-small-scale-solar-plants-are-letting

May 2016

Disruptive innovation: The most viable strategy for economic development in Africa


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Can Africa Spur Disruptive Innovations

It is tempting to discount the possibility of executing disruptive innovations in Africa because of the many obstacles to innovation on the continent, including poor infrastructure, the difficulty of doing business, and the very low incomes on the continent. But when these obstacles are framed as opportunities, innovators can build truly disruptive companies.

In fact, it is precisely because these obstacles exist that disruptive innovations can thrive in Africa.
When Haresh Aswani decided to start importing Indomie Noodles into Nigeria in 1988, the decks were stacked against his company, Tolaram. Nigeria was ruled by a military government, GDP per capita was only $256, and 78% of people lived on less than $2 per day. But Aswani began importing noodles into Nigeria and since then, has built 11 factories that manufacture many of the inputs for the noodles. The company directly employs approximately 10,000 people and hundreds of thousands indirectly. A packet of Indomie Noodles costs roughly 18 cents, a product affordable by the majority of Nigerians. Tolaram has begun expansion plans into other African countries. Where many see obstacles, the company sees opportunity.

Read the full article here.

 

Source: The World Bank, "Disruptive innovation: The most viable strategy for economic development in Africa". http://blogs.worldbank.org/africacan/disruptive-innovation-the-most-viable-strategy-for-economic-development-in-africa

October 2016

Horizon Pulp & Paper – A Successful Estonian Company


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Congratulations to Horizon Pulp & Paper for obtaining the Certificate of Successful Estonian Company 2016 from Krediidiinfo in conjunction with the international group, Creditinfo.

The awarding of such a certificate with the rating of AA – denoting Very Good – is a testament to the economic position, financial results, and payment conduct of the company. Each year approximately 14.2% of companies receive a rating of AA.

November 2016

Dufil – Labour Friendly Organsiation of The Year


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The advisory board and management of the Nigeria Entrepreneurs Awards on Friday 18th November 2016 at Ladi Kwali Hall, Sheraton Hotels and Towers Abuja conferred on Dufil "Labour Friendly Organization Of The Year" .

Dufil’s nomination was verified and screened by Independent auditors after a month long publication in Nigeria's National Newspapers and input from all stakeholders. It was unanimously agreed that we (Dufil Prima Foods Plc) had contributed immensely to the real sector / entrepreneurial growth and development either through actual practice or CSR programs. 

It was also said that in the face of Nigeria's economic challenges that had forced many companies to either shut down or retrench workers en mass, Dufil continued to protect her workforce and even create new employment opportunities.

Nigeria Entrepreneurs Award is one of the most prestigious and highly respected business Awards in Nigeria that seeks to recognize and showcase exemplary entrepreneurs and corporate organizations.

The 2016 edition had in attendance representative of President Muhammadu Buhari GCFR, Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje of Kano State who was physically present, Ooni of Ife, and many other VIP’s.

(Picture: Ashiwaju Temitope of Dufil with the Executive Governor of Kano State)

December 2016

Dufil Prima Foods – Best Company Promoting Consumer Interest 2016


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On Wednesday, 21st December 2016, Dufil Prima Foods was awarded the LaPRIGA Award for Best Company Promoting Consumer Interest.

The LaPRIGA Awards conferred by the Executive Council and Members of the Nigerian Institute of Public Relations recognises excellence in the field of public relations within the Nigerian marketing and communications industry. It celebrates practitioners, corporate organisations, and individuals whose amazing acts of service have made a positive impact in the lives of the people and the community at large and encouraged others to invest in such practices.

Dufil Prima Foods was honoured with this prestigious award during the Lagos PR Industry Gala Awards for their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives such as Indomie School feeding Project, School Adoption Programs, and Indomie Independence Day Award for Heroes of Nigeria.

Congratulations Team Dufil on being such leading lights in giving back to the community.