Guinness Ghana delivers best year performance despite economic challenges


Guinness Ghana, the leading total beverage business in the country, has posted its strongest performance in a financial year since it was set up, 63 years ago.



Speaking to investors during the Facts Behind the Figures event organized in conjunction with the Ghana Stock Exchange, Managing Director, Helene Weesie stressed that factors such as inflation, consistent input costs increase, and devaluation of the local currency took a toll on the performance of the business in the first half of the year.



“From November however, we have been able to course correct by putting various stringent measures in place to mitigate the FX effects, combat inflation, and reduce costs. Meanwhile, we continued investing in our priority brands. We turned the business around, ending the year with double-digit revenue growth while maintaining our volumes. Yes, H1 was challenging, but a strong H2 helped us to deliver the best year ever for Guinness Ghana.”



According to the first female Managing Director of the company, a strong foundation has been laid for an ongoing period of challenging economic circumstances for the business.



“We have demonstrated resilience. We have demonstrated resourcefulness in adapting processes, taking swift actions, and bringing different solutions to problems. We stayed close to our consumers and customers, and the increases in brand equity demonstrate that our brands are valued. As a team, we can be very proud on what we accomplished. We have truly demonstrated our Guinness Ghana motto ‘YES WE CAN’ in real-time.”



Justin Mollel (Finance Director), “all of the measures that the business introduced to deal with the current economic circumstances have led to a strong set of results. We grew revenue by 36%, grew profit by over 600% and generated positive cash flow, a turnaround from a negative cashflow last year.



We have delivered positive value for our cherished shareholders with a 676% increase in earnings per share, a positive return on capital and have declared dividend to our shareholders.



On her part, Sylvia Owusu-Ankomah, Corporate Relations Director for Guinness Ghana, pointed out that the performance of the business was also expressed in its work within communities across the country.



“As a business, we remain focused on championing our 10-year ESG action plan to help create a more inclusive and sustainable world. Our strategic priorities are to promote positive drinking, champion inclusion and diversity and pioneer grain to-glass sustainability. Doing business the right way, underpins everything we do.”



“We were very deliberate about giving over 11,000 community members in the Pusiga and Jirapa assemblies access to clean water, championing a national plastic collection campaign for recycling, empowering farmers to enhance our sorghum and maize value chain, and educating over 20,000 young people on the impact of underage drinking. Our focus on diversity and inclusion, particularly in ensuring we embrace gender equity across our business as well as involving



Women as beneficiaries of our community programs continue to be a driver of our sustainability initiatives.”



Helene Weesie summarizes, “Though the economic circumstances were unprecedented, we have shown that we can weather such storm, come out with market share growth, and increase brand equity while maintaining very high engagement of our employees. That, to us, demonstrates that we have laid a strong foundation for the future.”



Source: Ghana Web

Agbogbo-Za in Notsé: A celebration of Ewe culture and unity for socio-economic progress


Notsé, a town in the Republic of Togo, whose centuries-old walls have now become the object of a major festival, the Agbogboza. Successors to a relatively young chieftaincy, invented by the German administration in Togi over a century and a half ago, have in the last 60 years championed a new ideology aimed at reinventing a lost kingdom.



Ironically, it was the harsh measures imposed by the town’s ancient monarchy on its subjects that led to its early demise. Though Notse’s kingship still retains its distinctive validating emblems, the most visible testimony to its past misrule, the great wall monument, now provides the unifying symbol for disparate and dispersed Ewe people all over the world who see the town as their cradle, their ancestral home.



The Agbogbo-Za festival in Notsé stands as a remarkable testament to the rich cultural heritage of the Ewe people of Togo. This annual festival is not just a celebration but also a symbol of unity and a reminder of the historical journey that the Ewe ethnic group has undertaken over the centuries. The celebration of this festival reminds the people of Notsé and the entire Ewe Ethnic Group globally to forge a new alliance for socio-economic development.



The importance of Agbogbo-Za:



Agbogbo-Za is not just a festival; it is a cultural cornerstone for the Ewe people. It serves as a time for reflection on their heritage, a celebration of their identity, and an occasion to strengthen bonds among family and community members. Beyond its cultural significance, this festival plays a pivotal role in fostering unity and cooperation among the Ewe people, both locally and in the global diaspora.



Historical roots: The Ewe migration:



To understand the importance of Agbogbo-Za, we must delve into the history of the Ewe migration. The Ewe people are believed to have migrated from their ancestral home in Notsé, a walled city in present-day Togo. This migration, which took place over several centuries, saw the Ewe people spread across the West African region. Archaeological records suggest that Notsé served as a central hub during this migration, leaving behind invaluable traces of Ewe culture and history.



The walled city of Notsé:



Notsé, once the epicenter of Ewe civilization, is a city steeped in history. Its defining feature is its ancient walls, which stand as a testament to the advanced architectural skills of the Ewe people. These walls served as protection, and within them, a vibrant culture thrived. King Agokoli I, a legendary ruler, is a central figure in the history of Notsé. His reign is celebrated during the Agbogbo-Za festival, honoring his contributions to Ewe society.



The exodus of the Dogbowo and the birth of the Anlo:



The Ewe migration reached a pivotal moment when the Dogbowo, a group within the Ewe, decided to venture southward. This journey marked the birth of the Anlo people. The exact date of this exodus remains a subject of historical debate, but it is commemorated during the Agbogbo-Za festival. The breaking through the fenced wall at Notsé represents the departure of the Dogbowo, symbolizing their determination to seek new horizons, new lands, and new beginnings.



Forging a new alliance for socio-economic development:



In the 21st century, the Ewe community, both in Notsé and the global diaspora, has a unique opportunity to come together and harness their collective strengths for socio-economic development. By preserving their cultural heritage through events like Agbogbo-Za and leveraging their shared history and values, the Ewe people can form powerful alliances aimed at addressing common challenges and pursuing economic prosperity.



Conclusion:



The Agbogbo-Za festival in Notsé is more than just a celebration; it is a journey through time, a reminder of shared roots, and a call to unity. As the Ewe people honor their past, they also lay the foundation for a brighter future, one where cultural pride and cooperation lead to socio-economic development. Through the spirit of Agbogbo-Za, the Ewe community can forge new alliances and strengthen its global presence while preserving its rich heritage.



Source: Ghana Web

BOST targets GH¢10 billion in revenue for 2023


Managing Director of the Bulk Oil Storage and Transportation Company Limited (BOST), Edwin Provencal, has said his outfit plans to raise about GH¢10 billion in revenue ($871 million for the 2023 financial year.



According to him, the target by the the state-owned company could be achieved due to an increase in sales which is largely driven by demand for affordable fuel products on the Ghanaian market and landlocked countries in the north such as Mali and Burkina Faso.



Speaking on the sidelines of the APSCA awards ceremony with kenyatopstories.co.ke, the BOST MD said the company also plans to double its pipeline network through a public private partnership (PPP) module.



“The firm is planning to partner with private investors to build about 360 km additional pipeline network at a cost of circa US$400 million,” Edwin Provencal said in Nairobi, Kenya.



“We are going to float a competitive tender bid in the last quarter of this year. Actual construction of the pipeline is set to begin and will be completed after 24 to 36 months,” he added.



He further touted BOST’s efficient processes, which he said has now become the “most preferred source of refined petroleum products”.



Meanwhile at the company’s recently held AGM in Accra, Board Chairman for BOST, Ekow Hackman, highlighted that the net profit margin of the company had increased from GH¢161 million in 2021 to GH¢342 million in 2022.



BOST currently has six (6) depots nationwide which are located in the Accra Plains, Mami Water, Akosombo, Kumasi, Buipe and Bolgatanga and a pipeline network of about 360 km.



The 4th Africa Public Sector Conference & Awards (APSCA) was held in Nairobi-Kenya to acknowledge excellence in public policy innovation and outstanding leadership across various levels of governance.



In view of this, BOST was awarded as the most transformed public enterprise in Africa while its Managing Director, Edwin Provencal won a personal award as the best public sector CEO in Africa.



Source: Ghana Web

Business, political leaders advocate revaluation of Africa’s GDP


Business and political leaders from across the continent have amplified the need to reevaluate Africa’s gross domestic product (GDP) through a comprehensive assessment of its natural capital and ecosystem services, including its vast forests which play a crucial role in absorbing carbon emissions and enhancing the continent’s wealth.



The call for revaluation is grounded in the belief that by properly accounting for Africa’s abundant natural resources, the continent can provide a more accurate reflection of its production levels. This, in turn, will make African countries more appealing as investment destinations and help bridge existing economic disparities.



Speaking at the just concluded inaugural Africa Climate Summit (ACS) in Nairobi, Kenya, from September 4 to 6 2023 – where the Nairobi Declaration on Climate Change and Call to Action was adopted, they argued that: “Africa possesses immense natural wealth, from its lush forests to its diverse ecosystems; and we must recognise their value. By incorporating natural resource accounting and establishing national accounting standards, we can better assess our true economic potential”.



One of the central issues raised at the summit was disproportionate borrowing costs that developing countries in Africa face compared to wealthier nations – referred to as the ‘great financial divide’. Leaders highlighted that this financial disparity has been a major contributor to recurring debt crises in the region, hindering investment in development and climate action.



Expressing the urgency of the situation, they stated: “We need responsible sovereign lending practices and greater accountability: including comprehensive credit rating, risk analysis and debt sustainability assessment frameworks. We call upon financial markets to eliminate this disparity by 2025”.



In addition to addressing the financial divide, leaders discussed the importance of designing global and regional trade mechanisms that enable African products to compete fairly on international markets. They emphasised building resilience to climate shocks and deploying special drawing rights (SDRs) to bolster climate adaptation efforts, proposing the re-channeling of at least US$100billion of SDRs to Africa.



The summit also suggested consideration of a new SDR issue dedicated to climate crisis response – of a magnitude similar to the COVID-19 issue. Leaders underscored the need for better leverage of multilateral development banks’ (MDBs) balance sheets to scale-up concessional finance and improve debt management.



Regarding international tax cooperation, leaders urged action to reduce Africa’s annual loss of US$27billion in corporate tax revenue through profit-shifting. They called for measures to attract private capital, such as blended finance instruments, purchase commitments and foreign exchange guarantees. They again advocated the redesign of MDBs’ governance for greater inclusivity.



Energy



In the energy sector, leaders set ambitious goals to increase Africa’s renewable generation capacity from 56 GW in 2022 to at least 300 GW by 2030. They emphasised the importance of shifting energy-intensive primary processing back to Africa in support of renewable energy development and reducing global emissions. Additionally, leaders stressed the importance of accessing and transferring environmentally-sound technologies to support green industrialisation on the continent.



The summit also reemphasised the global makeover to a low-carbon economy, calling for investments of at least US$4 to US$6trillion per year; urging world leaders to consider a global carbon taxation regime including a carbon tax on fossil fuel trade, maritime transport and aviation, as well as a global financial transaction tax (FTT) to fund climate-positive investments.



They also welcomed pledges and commitments of US$26billion from development partners to support Africa’s renewable energy and adaptation efforts, which they say marks a significant step forward in the pursuit of a sustainable and equitable future for the continent.



Source: Ghana Web

Cedi sells at GH¢11.65 to $1, GH¢11.02 on BoG interbank as of September 11


The Interbank forex rates from the Bank of Ghana today, September 11, 2023, have shown that the Ghana Cedi is trading against the dollar at a buying price of 11.0461 and a selling price of 11.0571.



At a forex bureau in Accra, the dollar is being bought at a rate of 11.40 and sold at a rate of 11.65.



Against the Pound Sterling, the Cedi is trading at a buying price of 13.7833 and a selling price of 13.7993.



At a forex bureau in Accra, the pound sterling is being bought at a rate of 14.35 and sold at a rate of 14.85.



The Euro is trading at a buying price of 11.8332 and a selling price of 11.8449.



At a forex bureau in Accra, the Euro is being bought at a rate of 12.10 and sold at a rate of 12.60.



The South African Rand is trading at a buying price of 0.5786 and a selling price of 0.5790.



At a forex bureau in Accra, the South African Rand is being bought at a rate of 0.35 and sold at a rate of 0.95.



The Nigerian Naira is trading at a buying price of 69.7320 and a selling price of 69.7410.



At a forex bureau in Accra, Nigerian Naira is being bought at a rate of 11.00 Naira for every 1 Cedi and sold at a rate of 16.00.



For the CFA, it is trading at a buying price of 55.3789 and a selling price of 55.4336.



At a forex bureau in Accra, CFA is being bought at a rate of 16.50 CFA for every 1 Cedi and sold at a rate of 20.50 CFA for every 1 Cedi.



Source: Ghana Web

Businesses to shutdown at Accra Central for 3-day Ga Manye’s final funeral rights


Offices and shops in the Central Business District in the Greater Accra Region are expected to close down for three days to make way for the final funeral rights of the late Ga Manye, the Paramount Queen of Ga State, HRM Naa Dedei Omaedru III.



“From the 27th to the 29th of October, we expect shops and offices in the Central Business District to remain closed,” said Lady Justice Naa-Yarlay Adjei Amoah, Chief of Staff at the office of the Ga Mantse.



Justice Amoah, who doubles as the Secretary to Central Funeral Planning Committee of the late Ga Manye, added “We also expect them to decorate their business premises with black and red drippings”.



The various markets are also to drip all their surroundings in black and red because “we are mourning together, it’s not just the palace so we are respectfully calling on all to cooperate with us in this time of grief.”



Lady Justice Amoah made this known when a delegation from Jospong Group of Companies led by Mrs. Adokarley Okpoti- Paulo, Group Financial Controller for Environmental & Sanitation Group/ Finance Director of Zoomlion Ghana Limited signed the book of condolence at the Ga Traditional Council on Friday September 8, 2023.



The Group presented a box of schnapps, a box of Castle Bridge gin, Bottles of Red Label Whiskey, boxes of soft drinks and mineral water as well as refuse bins and an undisclosed cash donation to support preparations towards the final funeral rights of the late Ga Manye.



Presenting the items, Mrs. Okpoti-Paulo, said the gesture was to console and mourn with the elders for the great loss.



She announced that, Zoomlion Ghana Ltd., a subsidiary of the group will take charge of all the sanitation-related issues regarding the funeral.



“Zoomlion will help to keep the surroundings clean during and after the funeral ceremony to ensure that the Ga State is clean at all times,” she promised.



Receiving the items, Nii Ahene Nunoo III, commended the Group for the gesture and prayed for a long life for the Executive Chairman of the Group.



The final funeral rites of the late Ga Manye, who passed away in December last year, are slated from October 15 to 31 2023.



The book of condolences was signed and opened by H.E. the president of the Republic of Ghana Nana Addo Dankwah Akufo-Addo on June 19, 2023.



Source: Ghana Web

New farm-gate price is a rip-off to hardworking cocoa farmers – John Mahama


Former president, John Dramani Mahama, has expressed his disappointment at government’s recently announced hike in the farm-gate cocoa price for cocoa farmers in the upcoming 2023/2024 crop season.



He described the increment as deceptive and a rip-off of hardworking cocoa farmers and their families who continue to play a critical role in Ghana’s economy through the commodity.



In a Facebook post sighted by GhanaWeb Business, John Mahama argued that given the international market price of cocoa reaching a 46-year record high of $3,600, it was imperative for government to have provided cocoa farmers with a more equitable share of the international Free On Board (FOB) price.



“Sadly, the government has chosen to give them a paltry GH¢1,308 per bag, constituting only 52.7% of the FOB Price of the product on the international market. This is unfair to our cocoa farmers, who have been worse off since the NPP took over the reins of government in 2017,” he wrote.



“In 2016, my government, in addition to the free fertiliser and free cocoa seedlings programme, gave cocoa farmers 66.06% of the FOB Price of cocoa,” he added.



The former president maintained that instead of the governing NPP to build on existing foundations in the cocoa sector, it has rather increased the operational expenses of the Ghana COCOBOD while reducing international FOB price share meant for cocoa farmers.



Meanwhile, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo on Saturday September 9 announced an increase in the farm-gate price for cocoa beans from GH¢800 to GH¢1,308 for the 2023/2024 crop season.



The increase represents a 63 percent hike in almost 20 years.



Source: Ghana Web

Cocoa price increase: Farmers will not have to depend so much on government – Analyst


A financial analyst, Toma Imirhe, has backed the government’s decision to increase farm gate prices of cocoa from GH¢800 to GH¢1308 for the new cocoa season.



According to him, the increase is a game-changer for cocoa farmers as they would be able to afford fertilizer and other farm produce without relying on the government.



President Akufo-Addo announced a 63.6% increase in the producer price of cocoa from GH¢12,800 per metric tonne (GH¢800 per bag) to GH¢20,943 per metric tonne on September 9, 2023.



“I see it as a major step towards enabling cocoa farmers to be financially independent without relying on state interventions for fertilizer and insecticides. Over the past seven years, the increase in productivity has been the main focus of COCOBOD, now increasing the actual price is a major incentive for farmers,” he was quoted by asaaseradio.com.



“I think we are gradually getting to the stage, where Ghana’s cocoa farmers will be able to buy fertilizer and other inputs at market price and still make a profit, so it’s a win-win for everybody,” Imirhe added.



Source: Ghana Web