Peter Obi invested Anambra’s $20m in 2011 into SABMiller Brewery factory. The current worth of that investment has been in the news recently. Here the learning points and events around that investment.

On March 1, 2011, South African firm, SABMiller announced they are investing $100m in the construction of a greenfield plant in Nigeria through their subsidiary, Intafact Beverages Limited.

in a move ratified by the House of Assembly, the Anambra State Ministry of Finance invested N2bn in the plant, joining Next International, SABMiller of South Africa as owners. At the time, of this investment, Governor Peter Obi had resigned from Next International having transferred his shares and management roles to his younger brother, Josephat Obi an alumnus of University of Jos. According to Nigerian financial law, there was no conflict of interest since Ndihe who benefited by way of share valuation and increased earnings was not a government official when the deal was struck.

While construction was yet going on, the news broke November 2011 that, Chief Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu had died in London. There have been speculations that this sad incident would form the basis for the name of the range of alcoholic beverage.

“Oh Mpa.” (Oh Father) was the reaction whenever the demise of Ojukwu was discussed in the hometown of the former leader of the shortlived Biafran state. With this insight, the managers of the brand seized the mourning period to brand the beer and name the alcoholic beverage range HERO.

The then President Jonathan received the offer to come to do honours of launching the factory. Members of representatives had asked the President not to honour the “illegality” over the claims that company which was partly financed by state’s fund with a firm in which Peter Obi’s firm, Next International, under the management of his brother Ndihe Obi had an interest.

Peter Obi, running under the Labour Party had severally clarified publicly, that he had transferred his own interests in the company to his sibling.

Former president Jonathan who had just defeated Buhari of CPC and Ribadu of CAN a year earlier with the support of Ndigbos could not turn down the opportunity to honour Ojukwu, so he attended despite protests about a potential illegality and conflict of interest from civil society groups.


Maverick Success

The new company became an instant hit among even Nigerians in the of South West and South South as revenues and valuation surpassed all financial predictions. Riding on these successes, six years later, SABmiller which had first come into Nigeria in 2009 acquired Pabod Breweries Limited in Rivers State.

International Breweries in Osun and Intafact Beverages was sold to the largest beer manufacturer in the world from Belgium, AbinBiv through SABMiller. In the $100bn worldwide acquisition deal, AbinBiv put their Anambra Intafact interest and Pabod Rivers State operations under International Breweries established in 1978 in Osun State by Lawrence Omole. Intafact and Pabod became subsidiaries of International Breweries with plans for Africa’s largest beer factory put underway in Sagamu Ogun State.

Before the acquisition by Anheuser-Busch InBev (ABInBev), SABmiller Nigeria Holdings controlled 75% stake in the Anambra factory, Next International held 15% and Anambra State held the 15% stake. SABMiller had also held 82.81% majority equity stake in Pabod, with Rivers State Government controlling 14.52% stake. The merger saw all the assets, liabilities, undertakings, real property, intellectual property of Intafact in Anambra and Pabod in Rivers transferred to International Breweries of Osun State.

With International Breweries as the new parent company after the merger, SAMiller Holdings which now belonged to ABInBev held 47.4% stake, Brauhaase International Management GMBH. BIM GmBH had been a major shareholder of International Breweries in Nigeria, before ABInBev took control of the German brewer. It got 27.7 % equity stake to take the holding of ABInBev in International Breweries to 75.1% as the majority shareholder. Anambra State Government got 4.7% equity with other stakeholders getting the 20.2% remaining equity stake.

The Obi of Onitsha, Igwe Nnaemeka Alfred Achebe, was appointed the new Chairman Board of Directors of International Breweries in 2018.    The royal had formerly served on the board of Intafact as Chairman, leading other members including Michael Onochie Ajukwu, Igwe Peter Nwokike Anugwu.

Sunday Akintoye Omole had earlier stepped down as chairman of the board of International Breweries following the merger of the three companies. Omole remained on the board as a non-executive director along with Gbenga Awomolo.

This growth of the breweries led to the establishment of a $250m factory by International Breweries in Sagamu launched in August 2018.

With the N152bn Market Value of International Breweries today, the 4.7% stake of Anambra Ministry of Finance as at 2017 would worth N7.1bn ($16 million) from the N2.2bn invested 11 years ago by Anambra state under Peter Obi.

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