Posted by News Express | 30 December 2015 | 3,999 times
Naija Standard online newspaper, as part of activities marking its third anniversary, has named Alhaji Aliko Dangote, President of the Dangote Group of Companies and Africa’s richest man its Person of the Year 2015.
A press statement issued by Naija Standard Managing Editor, Samson Shoaga, made available to News Express, said that the Kano-born billionaire was unanimously chosen by the board of assessors “based on his unrivaled business module, which acts as stimulant to the African economy and provides the highest job-creation by any single individual in Africa.”
His words: “Dangote Group is the greatest business module ever to have come out of Africa. We are happy he is a Nigerian. We have the record which shows Dangote Group as largest employer of labor and youths empowerment in the continent of Africa. This number one billionaire in
Africa and 71st most powerful person in the world generates his source of income from cement, sugar and flour.
“Till date, his massive investment in African countries like Nigeria, Benin, Cameroon, Ghana, South Africa, Togo, Tanzania, Zambia and, now Zimbabwe has daily become headline-raiser in the Western media. Dangote has proven and shown that determination, hard work, resilience, vision and consistency are the master-keys that can unlock any business opportunities.”
While addressing journalists in Harare recently, Dangote said: “We have already decided to invest into Zimbabwe, that’s why we are here. Any country where you see us visiting, it means, yes, we’ve decided to invest. If government permission is granted, construction on the cement plant will begin during the first quarter of 2016. When completed, the plant will
produce 1.5 million tonnes of cement a year.”
According to Shoaga, Dangote’s proposed investment in Zimbabwe could be a major economic boost for the southern African country that is currently grappling with a slump in metal prices and a severe drought that has badly affected its agricultural sector. He added that agriculture and the mining industry are Zimbabwe’s most important sources of revenue.
The Naija Standard Managing Editor noted that Dangote with a present real time net worth of $15.8 billion, as confirmed in the latest edition of FORBES Magazine on December 29, 2015 enters Guinness Book of Records as two-time ‘Africa's Richest, Most Humble Billionaire’ in 2014 and 2015.
Shoaga, who describes Dangote’s business module as ‘Pan Africanism’, opined that the objective is to ensure no part of the continent is missing: “In June, this 67th richest man in Africa launched a 2.5 million metric tonnes per annum (mtpa) cement plant in Addis-Ababa, Ethiopia, and commissioned a $250 million factory in Cameroun. It is on record that in 2015, he launched new cement plants in Zambia and Tanzania. In total, Dangote Cement produces more than 30 million metric tons annually, with a plan to double capacity by 2018.”
According to Shoaga, capital market enquiries show that Dangote owns nearly 91 per cent of publicly-traded Dangote Cement through a holding company. “This percentage exceeds the 80 per cent ownership ceiling set by the Nigerian Stock Exchange.” He recalled that a note in Dangote Cement's 2014 annual report states that “controlling shareholder, Dangote Industries Limited, has continued to reduce its holding in Dangote Cement towards the NSE-required level of 80 per cent or less,” adding that Dangote doesn’t appear to have sold many shares this year.
Other subsidiaries in the Dangote Group - which is active in 15 African countries – include salt, sugar and flour manufacturing companies.
•Photo shows Aliko Dangote.
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