TAK Agro Plc, a major player in Nigeria’s agricultural value chain says it has concluded arrangement to purchase 250 MAN trailer-trucks for its fertiliser production and distribution, as well as grain processing and storage operations in readiness for dry season farming.
The Chairman of Tak Agro Plc., Thomas Etuh, said on Wednesday in Abuja that the decision was taken in Lagos, at the signing of N15 billion bonds facilitated for the company by Planet Capital as part of plans to acquire 1,000 trucks.
Etuh said that N15 billion was the first tranche of a N50 billion bond approved by Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) to finance the acquisition of key infrastructure to facilitate the movement of raw materials and evacuation of agricultural produce.
“Every six monhs, TAK Group moves raw materials and fertilisers to and from various blending plants.
“It requires about 34,000 truck trips to move one million tonnes for both raw materials and finished goods, and if you benchmark this against our installed capacity, we are basically talking of about 100,000 truck trips a year. You can now see why this is important to us.
“We are starting with 250 trucks for now but our requirement is more like 2,000 trucks to be able to meet our requirements.
“This means that even when we have the complete 1,000 trucks, we will still be supporting that with the third party trucking arrangement as we are currently doing,” he said in a statement by Mr Alex Emode, Media Consultant to Tak Agro.
Etuh explained that TAK Group is driving towards building a Pan African integrated agro solutions company with an installed capacity of three million metric tonnes out of the country’s need of about four million tonnes.
He expressed optimism that the additional investments in logistics would ensure optimal leverage of economy of scale with regard to the company’s installed capacity.
“TAK Group is one of the few end-to-end players in the agro value chain in Nigeria, starting from yield enhancement by providing NPK fertilizers to farmers all the way to storage of grains and the produce that comes out from the application of the fertilisers.
“TAK logistics is one of the key building blocks for the end-to-end value that the TAK Group delivers to the market, starting from the delivery of raw materials to the blending plants to the movement and distribution of blended fertilisers to the agro dealers.
“Nigerian farmers lose over 50 percent of their produce due to the lack of storage facilities and difficulty in moving the produce from farms to markets and storage centres, and that is why, part of the infrastructure that TAK group is putting in place is to deal with this issue.
“So, while we are enhancing yield per hectare with our fertiliser, we are also taking care of the waste that have been the lot in the industry over these years.
“This ensures our farmers earn a lot more at the end and the idea of seasonal availability of staples like grains will be a thing of the past,” he said.