South Africa’s Clover Industries, makers of a wide range of food and beverage products has announced that it will no longer invest in Nigeria due to the financial crisis caused by the fallen oil price.
“The current financial crisis experienced in Nigeria which is fueled by the low oil price is a further cause of concern, thus the group has decided to withdraw from future investments in Nigeria,” the company said in a statement.
Clover, established in 1898 is a branded foods and beverages group that produces and distributes (for itself and other FMCG companies) a diverse range of dairy and consumer products through one of the largest chilled and most extensive distribution networks in Africa.
Companies in Nigeria have laid-off thousands of workers, cut production, and in some cases, closed operations as they struggle to get enough dollars to pay for imported raw materials and spare parts. The Nigerian Naira (the local currency) had devalued following a slump in oil revenues.
“It’s a sad decision but until the currency crisis is resolved, we won’t be able to invest in there any further,” Chief Executive, Johann Vorster told Reuters.
Clover had planned to invest about 100 million rand ($6.43m) in developing products in Nigeria, but instead will continue to expand operations in other Southern African countries, notably Botswana, Namibia, Lesotho and Swaziland.
Clover produces a wide range of products, some of which include Tropika, Clover Krush, Clover Life Nectar, Aquartz Mineral Water, Nestle Pure Life, Milo, Nestea Ice Tea, Manhattan Ice Tea, Super M flavoured Milk, Quali Juice.
The company said it would like to keep the clover brand alive through its Tropika juices.