The quality of agricultural yield in sub-Saharan Africa, particularly Nigeria, is set to receive a major boost, says Onajite Okoloko, chief executive officer of Notore, whose company listed by introduction a total of 1.6 billion ordinary shares of 50 kobo each at N62.50 per share on the Nigerian Stock Exchange on Thursday.
The listing, which could potentially increase Nigeria’s equities market capitalization by N100 billion, will provide an avenue for growth and provide liquidity for the business.
“We can now continue to improve and expand upon our current activities, seek out other areas for growth and continue to impact the lives of the average farmer/farming family,” Okoloko said.
The listing of the company’s shares is primarily to create a float from existing shareholders, he said, adding that a long-term objective for the firm is to carry out an initial public offer where funds will be raised to build a second plant in Port Harcourt.
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The core business of Notore is manufacturing and distribution of fertilizers across the country with a demand of about 1.5 to 2 million metric tonnes, but latent demand is estimated to be as much as 10 million tonnes in just Nigeria alone, the CEO said.
The company also has a power business and seed subsidiary.
Okoloko said the potential for Notore is enormous given the fact that sub-Saharan Africa, and particularly Nigeria, is not meeting up to the recommended average fertilizer utilization of about 200 kilogrammes per hectare.
“Currently in Nigeria we are using less than 10 kilogrammes per hectare so it is important that we work together. We are supporting farmers by providing education, training, good quality inputs and also at the same time, introducing seeds so that we can take a bundle of best practice to the farmer to help improve their yields,” he said.