NAMIBIA – The Namibian Stock Exchange has approved next Wednesday’s secondary listing of Clover, the dairy company said on Wednesday.

The move is in line with JSE-listed Clover’s aim to increase exposure and earnings contribution from faster-growing economies in the rest of Africa.

Clover CE Johann Vorster said Namibia remains a key driver of Clover’s strategy to establish distribution centres across neighbouring countries.

Clover’s Namibia unit started in 2011 and has grown over the years to employ about 80 people at its depot in Windhoek. The company distributes both refrigerated and non-refrigerated dairy and other products throughout the region.

Namibia has enjoyed considerable successes since it gained independence from SA in 1990, maintaining consistent economic growth, moderate inflation, limited public debt, and export earnings, World Bank research shows.

Mining, livestock rearing, fishing, metallurgy, and food processing have been mainstays of the economy, with construction growing rapidly in recent years. Metals and minerals provide the majority of export revenue, followed by fish, tourism, livestock, logistics services, beer, beef, and grapes.

The listing comes after the group last year won a court battle against the Namibian government’s restriction on imports of fresh, extended shelf life, ultrahigh temperature milk and other diary products. The restrictions were intended to provide protection to Namibia’s dairy industry.

Clover is in the process of wrapping up talks with potential partners to expand into other African countries such as Nigeria and Angola.

Due to the lack of refrigeration and poor infrastructure in these countries, the company’s long-life products could appeal to the urbanised middle classes in Africa whose incomes are rising.

In SA, Clover is spending about R75m on installing another yoghurt production line after the one it bought from DairyBelle had run out of capacity two years earlier than expected.

The high-margin yoghurt and custard markets are estimated at R3.6bn and R675m. Clover bought DairyBelle’s yoghurt and ultrahigh temperature “long-life” milk businesses in January, after its service deal with Danone had ended.

April 17, 2015;

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