Honeywell Flour Purchase’ll Enhance Our Gains From AfCFTA- Flour Mills GMD

The Managing Director of Flour Mills of Nigeria Plc, Omoboyede Olusanya, says the group’s portfolio continues to evolve, with the recent acquisition of the majority equity stake in Honeywell Flour Mills Plc, and the attendant differentiated offers, thereby position it for opportunities offered by the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).

A filing on the Nigerian Exchange Limited portal by Joseph Umolu, the Company Secretary and director, Legal Services, said the group has also “developed a local content, food security, and nutrition board committee to improve the well-being of our consumers, assist in regenerating and strengthening the farming communities in our supply chains, and promote local economic development.”

While this is going on, Olusanya, while reacting to the audited financials for the year-ended March 31, 2022, released on Monday, said as part of the group’s strategy, it is enhancing “operational efficiency with accelerated plans for cost optimizations across the Group. This will ensure that we are on course to continue to create value for our shareholders in the long run.”

He also assured of the Flour Mills’ greater commitment “to implementing its long-term plan, especially as it concerns further investments in local content by way of product innovation across the existing five major value chains.

Investments in local content, including the agro-allied segment, the statement explained, followed the increase in local demand and export operations, which contributed N19bn, or 47% to Profit Before Tax.

“Our substantial underlying earnings demonstrate our commitment to achieving sustainability as we drive to achieve food security in the country, given the challenging operating environment over the years.”

The GMD noted that the recent appointment of a third female board member is part of promoting gender diversity throughout the business segments, besides making more strides in its sustainability agenda in line with a long-standing commitment to women’s empowerment.

Highlights of the group’s business performance for the financial year under review, included “an impressive top-line growth for the full year across all business segments with revenue growing by 51% year-on-year, while continuing to demonstrate “resilience and strong performance across Food, Agro-Allied and Support Segments delivering top-line growth of 57% in Q4 and 51% in FY22, behind strong volume growth and favourable mix.”

Further highlights showed that PBT for the year reached N41bn, a growth of 11% from N37bn in 2020/2021, even as the group strengthened its position as the market leader in flour, semolina and pasta manufacture as it obtained approval for the acquisition of Honeywell Flour Mills Plc.

“Our food segment grew by N270bn, due to higher B2B volumes and growth in core B2C categories as we expanded our focus on local content. The Group also continued to increase and diversify investments in our B2C redistribution infrastructure with the rollout of 226 vans to enhance penetration of our new business partners, especially into rural areas and to support the technology driven market channels.

“Our oil and fats business grew revenue by 58%, while pre-tax profit margin expanded by 141% YoY, driven by improved export operations (revenue up 26%).

“The growing demand in the north and by other industrial customers propelled our introduction of brown sugar, which is locally grown on our farms in Sunti, to the market. At the same time, our backward integration project in sugar production recorded a 21% improvement in revenue driven by increased volume. However, the rise in raw material costs largely impacted the sugar segment’s operating performance,” the group added.

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