Industrialist urges manufacturers to source raw materials locally

Fatai Odeshile

The Managing Director, Grand Oak Nigeria Ltd., a sister company of Nigerian Distilleries Ltd. (NDL), Fatai Odeshile, has advised manufacturing companies operating in the country to engage in backward integration by sourcing their raw materials locally in order to grow the economy.

Odeshile gave the charge last week in Abeokuta while speaking to journalists after the “2017 Distributors’ Conference”, and official launch of the re-branded Regal gin, a flagship product of the company.

He noted that one of the smartest ways manufacturing companies can survive the current economic hardships is to stop the importation of raw materials and invest in the local market by sourcing their raw materials locally.

He said his company had realised the impact of the economic downturn on its production, which propelled management to invest heavily in agricultural products, like cassava, which contains a major raw material used in production.

He said that as far back as 10 years ago, the company stopped importing ethanol, a major raw material for its products from countries Indian, Brazil and others, and by so doing, became the first African company to have a cassava-based ethanol production company in Igbesa, Ogun State.

This, according to him, had helped the company stay afloat even in the face of the economic downturn.
On the re-branded Regal Gin, Odeshile said the brand is a global quality brand, totally made from natural fruits extracts, locally sourced to give consumers the desired satisfaction.

“This brand is over 30 years old, it is one of the brands of Nigerian Distilleries Ltd. We know what our consumers want and that is why we are giving them the best quality money can buy.”

Also speaking, the Brand Manager, Regal Gin, Adeniyi Babatunde, said: “This brand has transcended to greater heights; it has gone beyond being a local brand, it can compete favourably with international brands, you can see the packaging, and the crystal bottle.

“The brand is synonymous with promotion of our culture with the crafting of our Ankara fabric design cap. It is a brand that has transcended beyond demography.”

“The raw materials used for this brand are all sourced locally. Apart from the content of the brand, the packaging materials are also sourced locally, from the labels to the caps. Before, we used to bring in caps from foreign countries but now we are getting from vendors locally. A lot of local content has gone into developing this brand.”

The event also witnessed the unveiling of the Brand Ambassador, Femi Adebayo, a popular Yoruba Nollywood actor.

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