L&Z Names Keith Richards New Chairman of Reconstituted Board

L & Z Integrated Farms has reconstituted its board and named Mr. Keith Richards as its new Chairman.
Richards, a British national, is also the chairman of Promasidor Nigeria.

L&Z is a unique family business offering a range of products from delicious creamy ice-creams to nutritious fresh yoghurt to veterinary services.
The farms were the pioneer beneficiaries of the Federal Government Fund for Agricultural Finance Initiative in Nigeria (FAFIN).
As part of the financing deal, Sahel Capital, the fund manager acquired a 25 per cent stake in the company and its board reconstituted to include Mr. Richards and Mr. A. B. Mahmoud as Independent Directors.
Richards was Managing Director of Promasidor from 2007 to 2014 and is credited with substantially improving respect for the brand across the country. He stepped down from the position in May 2014 to assume the office of Non-Executive Chairman and it is expected that the wealth of experience he will be bringing into L & Z Farms will see the company metamorphose into a highly competitive global brand.
Among other decisions taken at the Board meeting included the confirmation of Alhaji Muhammad D. Abubakar as the company’s substantive Managing Director while Mrs. Rakiya Abubakar was also confirmed as Executive Director of the company.
Two members of Sahel Capital’s team who also joined the L & Z Board as part of the deal, Mezuo Nwuneli – Sahel’s Managing Partner – and Olumide Lawson, as well as Mr. A. B. Mahmoud and Barr. Zubaidah D. Abubakar were also confirmed as substantive directors.
The announcement of the investment in the company was made during the public launch of FAFIN at a ceremony last year in Abuja.
L&Z was selected after a rigorous operational review of dairy farms across Nigeria.
The farm has an integrated facility which produces yoghurt, fresh milk and ice cream from its dairy operations, and eggs and poultry meat from its poultry operations under the L & Z brand.
Backed by a strong management team, the company has established itself as a key player in the yoghurt and fresh milk segment of the Nigerian agricultural sector.
The company is strategically located in Kano, in close proximity to a broad range of sources of fresh milk from local Fulani herdsmen and small commercial cattle farms, enabling it through a community outreach programme to successfully source over 60 per cent of its milk requirements from northern Nigeria, in line with the government’s efforts to reduce importation of milk powder.
Meanwhile, with FAFIN’s investment, L & Z intends to expand its production and processing capacity and also increase the number of its milk collection centers. Establishment of milk collection centers reduces the need for the Fulani herdsmen’s children to hawk milk products, thus increasing the likelihood of them attending school.
Speaking at the event, President Goodluck Jonathan had commended FAFIN and its goal to invest $100 million to support sustainable growth in agriculture-oriented SMEs.
He also thanked the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr. Akinwumi Adesina, for the innovative initiative.
Other fund sponsors include the German Development Bank – KfW and the Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority.
Adesina said:“The dairy industry in Nigeria is highly underdeveloped, relying heavily on the importation of dairy products.
“Companies had either import and repackage milk powder or reconstitute imported milk powder into liquid milk and other dairy products. FAFIN’s investment in L & Z is transformational as it will promote local milk production,” he said.

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