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.