By Didi Akinyelure
LAGOS, Aug 2 (Reuters) – Fertiliser maker Notore Chemical Industries has achieved a 100.75 billion naira ($330 million) valuation by listing on the Nigerian Stock Exchange, with a free float of 16 percent.
Notore, which produces fertiliser for sale within Nigeria and for export to West Africa, Southern Africa and Europe, said it had listed 1.61 billion ordinary shares at 62.50 naira each on Thursday, a day before active trading begins.
The offering will increase access to capital to fund its growth plans, Notore’s Chief Executive, Onajite Okoloko told stockbrokers during the listing.
The company, which also has interests in power, food and seed production, said in a presentation that 75 percent of its urea fertiliser is sold at home with the balance exported to traders in Europe such as Helm AG, Ameropa and Yara.
Agriculture accounts for 20 percent of Nigeria’s gross domestic product with crop production contribution the highest with the farming subsector.
However, low fertiliser production and the high cost of importing fertilisers has limited seed production. Fertiliser consumption in Nigeria ranks below its African peers at around 100 kilogram per hectare, Notore said.
Africa’s richest man Aliko Dangote is developing a 1.5 million tonne fertiliser plant in Nigeria’s commercial hub of Lagos, which he expects to commission by end of the year.
Singapore-owned Indorama Eleme Petrochemicals Ltd, is seeking to double its Nigerian plant annual output of urea fertiliser to 2.8 million tonne, and plans to list in Lagos next year.
Notore acquired the assets of state-owned fertiliser company National Fertiliser Company of Nigeria, based in the Niger Delta for $152 million more than 10 years ago and in 2012 entered into a joint venture with Mitsubishi Corporation to develop a new fertiliser plant, it said in the presentation.
It now has Africa Finance Corporation (AFC) as one of its shareholders with 4.9 percent holding. More than half of the shares are held by a vehicle registered in Mauritius.
Notore has the capacity to produce 500,000 metric tonnes per annum of urea, it said and also develops and sells staple crops such as maize and rice.