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Pioneer Foods Plans More African Acquisitions After Nigeria Deal

Pioneer Foods, a South African food and beverage producer, plans acquisitions in at least five more African countries after taking a majority holding in Nigerian competitor Food Concepts.

“We’re talking to entrepreneurs for opportunities to expand our investments in the continent” within the next five years, Thushen Govender, the company’s head of international business, said in an interview in Lagos, Nigeria’s commercial hub, on Tuesday. “Our focus is on larger economies with a higher population -- for example, Angola, Kenya, Ethiopia, Tanzania and Ghana.”

Pioneer Foods completed the $7 million purchase of a 50.1 per cent stake in Food Concepts, an operator of quick-service restaurants and bakeries in Ghana and Nigeria, Africa’s largest economy.

The acquisition will enable the Paarl-based producer of baked goods, cereals and beverages to expand beyond South Africa, Govender said. Pioneer Foods sees Nigerian economic growth and its large, young population as a boost for the consumer market, he said.

Nigeria has a population of more than 177 million people, of which 44 per cent is under the age of 15, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. That compares with 28 per cent in South Africa.

Bloomberg News, edited by ESM

 

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