Nigeria’s leading agro-allied company, Notore Chemical Industries Plc has notified the Nigerian Stock Exchange, its shareholders and the general public of changes to its management.
Notore is Africa’s first indigenous Urea fertilizer producer in Sub-Saharan Africa including South Africa.
With the change, Mr. Onajite Okoloko retires as the company’s Group Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, effective from 31st January 2021, after serving in the capacity for 16 years. He will remain on the Board of the Company as a non-Executive Director.
Okoloko had in 2005, assembled a team of investors to acquire the assets of the former NAFCON and as a core investor, partnered with a consortium that included Emerging Capital Partners, a major private equity firm out of Washington, D.C., USA., and OCI Fertilizers BV, owned by the Orascom Group, on the deal.
He later successfully led the completion of the largest single loan syndication of Nigerian banks at the time, when Notore raised US$222 million from 7 Nigerian financial institutions. Mr. Ohis Ohiwerei takes over from Mr. Okoloko as the Group Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of the company, effective from 1st February 2021. Mr. Ohiwerei was formerly an Executive Director and the Deputy Managing Director of the Company.
Prior to joining the Company on 17th September 2018, he served in executive capacities in Guaranty Trust Bank Plc and Diamond Bank Plc. Mr. Ohiwerei was the Chief Financial Officer of Diamond Bank Plc and later became Executive Director, Corporate Banking of Diamond Bank Plc from 2005 – 2010. In October 2011, he was appointed as an Executive Director of Guaranty Trust Bank Plc, where he was responsible for Commercial Banking and Public Sector, Lagos Division for four years, until his retirement from the Bank in October, 2015.
The other new appointee is Mr. Ebiaho Emafo, who joins the Notore Board as an Executive Director and the Chief Operating Officer, effective from 1st February 2021.
He has over 25 years of progressive global experience driving positive bottom-line results for local, international, public and private companies.
Also, Mr. Tijjani St. James assumes a new role as the Chief Commercial Officer of the company, effective 1st February 2021. The role of the Chief Commercial Officer has been created to replace the existing Group Head, Commercial Services role, in light of the expanded commercial activities which include not only the Company’s traditional Urea sales, but also the newly introduced Notore NPK fertilizers marketing; sales and distribution; Notore Seeds and the Notore Rice initiative.
Nigeria’s former President, General Dr. Yakubu Gowon has retired as Chairman of the company’s board, effective from 28th January 2021, in compliance with the company’s retirement age policy for Directors. He assumed the role in February 7, 2007 and worked assiduously to drive the growth of the company during the period he held fort.
Also retiring from the company’s board is Mr. Richard Herb, a Non-Executive Director, who leaves the board in compliance with the company’s retirement age policy for Directors. He joined Notore’s Board on 23rd January 2006 and his retirement is effective from 28th January 2021.
He is a veteran in the fertilizer industry having commenced his career with International Minerals Corp., Illinois, USA in 1970, where he obtained extensive knowledge of production of Nitrogen, Phosphorus and Potassium Fertilizers.
The new board and management team are expected to push forward with the company’s ongoing Turnaround Maintenance (TAM) programme, which is billed to boost revenue, cash-flow, productivity and profitability. They are also to lead the firm’s diversification drive, especially in the production of seeds, NPK and rice.