NIGERIA - Energy & Mining
Prior to his current role, Chibuike Lawrence Achigbu was chairman of Imo Standard Shoe Company Ltd as well as Chairman of Imo Marketing Company Ltd. A graduate of the Federal University of Technology Owerri (FUTO), where he graduated as the best petroleum engineering student in his class, he also has an MPA from the University of Lagos and a degree in strategy, entrepreneurship, and leadership development from Harvard Business School. He is a member of the Nigerian Society of Engineers a recipient of the Distinguished Alumnus Award of FUTO Nigeria.
In 1994, I started my first gas company, a gas refilling plant. By 1997, we were expanding, though we were at times forced to import due to local supply shortages. In mid-2005, we were selected by NLNG to participate in a new model created to enhance the system. We grew over time and now have more than three plants. A terminal is also being developed in Delta state, where products can be easily offloaded. We already export to Cote d’Ivoire, and plan to export more. We are also trying to further develop our domestic market. We are working on developing more skid plants as well. It is a small modular plant that allows for easy fuel tank refilling. We currently have about 40 and plan to put out almost 500 in different locations. We are also interested in gas processing and the gas flare process, though this can take time and a great deal of input from the government, which can be fairly slow. We want to find the best way to send cooking gas to people’s homes to improve the quality of their lives and substantially reduce the amount of pollution that enters the atmosphere. Finally, we are driving the power game; Nigeria produces around 4GW of electricity, though we need far more. We need to use the gas we have to develop the country’s power infrastructure.
Most of our clients are in the domestic space interested in cooking at home. We utilize the various gas distributors and send our product through their lines to the homes. With low volumes, we had enough capacity with existing terminals; however, as the domestic market grows, we will need greater capacity, which is where the importance of new terminals lies. From the terminal, complanies like us take gas and deliver it to our plants, from which we then sell directly to consumers. There are many small entrepreneurs that own gas plants, and these are the largest pieces of our client portfolio. We do not have a relationship with the government in this space.We produce 500,000 tons annually, and at this level Nigeria cannot perform as well as it should be doing in terms of LPG penetration and use. We also need to study what countries such as China and Malaysia have done in terms of expanding this market. The best way to do so is to maximize our cylinder infrastructure and distribute them as deeply as we can.
NIGERIA - Energy & Mining
Group Managing Director, Eraskorp Nigeria Limited
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