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Crown Beverages, Celebrates 20 Years Of Growth And Success



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pepsi• Company grows sales volumes by 900% percent over 20 years of Ugandan ownership
• Sales grow from 2million raw cases (2.4m 8 oz cases) of soda in 1993 to 20million raw cases (25m 8 oz cases) in 2013.

Kampala, April 15th 2013- 20 years after the ownership of the former government-owned Lake Victoria Bottling Company was transferred to Crown Beverages Limited- a company owned by 3 local shareholders, there is cause to celebrate, thanks to years of investments and stable management that has seen the company grow and is on course to become an industry leader in the heavily competitive Carbonated Soft Drink (CSD) industry.

Lake Victoria Bottling Co. Ltd started production in 1951 as the franchisee bottler for PepsiCo, but was in 1993 privatized to a consortium of local investors, who renamed it Crown Bottlers Ltd. In 1997, International Pepsi-Cola Bottler Investments, a South African firm acquired a 51 percent stake in the company and renamed it Crown Beverages Ltd. In 2001, the 3 local shareholders, Amos Nzeyi, Chris Kayoboke and Dr Margaret Kigozi re-acquired 100 percent control of the company.
Following decades of investment that has seen 4 new glass bottling lines and 1 plastic packaging line added to the Nakawa-based plant and several new products introduced, the company today has witnessed unprecedented growth and is today one of the leading employers and tax payers in the country.

“Over the last 20 years, we have made significant investments into new products, bottling lines thereby creating more demand and loyalty for our brands. The market has rewarded us with more loyalty, allowing us to grow our sales volumes from by 900% from 2milllion raw cases (2.4m 8 oz cases of soda) in 1993 to 20m raw cases (25m 8 oz cases) in 2013 6, ” said Amoz Nzeyi, Crown Beverages Executive Chairman.
Nzeyi, who was speaking at stakeholder dinner to mark the 20th anniversary, held at Kampala Serena Hotel, said that following 20 years of solid and profitable performance, the company, had set a foundation for a more robust growth.
“The last 20 years have been such a great experience. We believe, we have set a more solid foundation on which we shall build an even greater company over the next 20 years so as to leverage growth opportunities within Uganda. I have no doubt that with the support from PepsiCo, a dedicated local team as well as the huge love from our consumers; the next 20 years, will be even greater,” he said.

The dinner was attended by among others Rt. Hon Amama Mbabazi, the Prime Minister of the Republic of Uganda, Saad Abdul-Latif, PepsiCo Chief Executive Officer for Asia, Middle East and Africa (AMEA) and Mr Sanjeev Chadha, PepsiCo President for Middle East and Africa (MEA) region.

Simon Lugoloobi, CEO Crown Beverages, attributed the growth of the company to consistent investments into the right product mix that has offered consumers more choice as well as the brands’ unswerving engagement with their consumers, which has increased loyalty and created stronger relationships.
“One of our major success stories in the past 20 years has been our ability to not only grow the strength of our existing brands but the ability to bring new brands to life and oversee their successful growth into key brands,” he said, adding: A case in point is Mountain Dew that was launched in the market 4 years ago but has grown to become one of Uganda’s most loved Soda brands appealing to consumers all over the country. This plus the staying power of Pepsi and Mirinda have helped catapult us to a position where our brands are some of the most highly rated in the market.”

The company’s brand portfolio includes: Pepsi-Cola, the flagship brand, Mountain Dew Mirinda (Fruity, Orange, Pineapple and the recently launched Mirinda Green Apple), 7UP and Evervess. These are available in 300ml returnable glass bottle, 500ml, 1 litre and 2 litre recyclable plastic bottles. The company also bottles mineral water under the Peak brand.
Saad Abdul-Latif, reiterated PepsiCo’s growing interest in Africa and said that the global foods and drinks giant, is committed to consolidating its recent gains in Uganda and elsewhere on the continent, as the next drivers of growth.
“Africa is the next Asia. The continent is the developing world’s next great success story and at PepsiCo we want to be right at the centre of that success story, working with local teams to leverage our years of best practices and the world’s best brands so we can together match to a great future,” he said, adding: “We are very committed, to continue building Crown Beverages into an outstanding business and given our achievements over the last 20 years and the tremendous potential we see in Uganda, nothing is going to stop us.”

Mbabazi, praised the staff, management and directors of Crown Beverages for their resilience, hard work and setting a good example to other Ugandan entrepreneurs.
“I am proud to stand along with the board, management and staff, but most importantly, millions of your consumers and thump my chest and say- We have made it; because the success of every Ugandan business is ultimately a success for all of us.
He also said that the success of Crown Beverages is a national treasure and an opportunity for all Ugandans to learn about the importance of resilience, honesty and hard work as key elements of success.
“The Crown Beverages story is one of those inspiring stories that should be shared with many of our entrepreneurs and owners of start-ups who are still struggling. They need to understand that success is not an overnight affair and nor is it a smooth road- but rather a result of hard work, resilience and personal sacrifices – all towards a common vision,” he said.

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Local Business

Jumia Uganda appoints new CEO, launches Black Friday campaign



Ron Kawamara(L), the new ceo for Jumia Uganda addresses media. Looking on is Massimiliano Spalazzi, Jumia’s co-CEO.

Ron Kawamara(L), the new CEO for Jumia Uganda addresses media. Looking on is Massimiliano Spalazzi, co-CEO, Jumia Africa.

By Our Reporter

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Jumia Uganda has announced that Ron Kawamara will take over as new CEO for Uganda. This was during a press briefing held at The Hickory restaurant on Thursday morning. Ron has previously served as the Regional Managing Director of Jumia Food, East Africa, and comes with a wealth of experience in the African Commerce industry.

Speaking at the briefing, Massimiliano Spalazzi,the co-CEO Jumia Africa said, “After a thorough and thoughtful search process, we are thrilled to have Ron take on the CEO role. Ron brings a stellar leadership reputation, a wealth of consumer experience, and a lifelong passion for eCommerce to Jumia – all of which are critical ingredients in the continued evolution of our company. We are absolutely confident that Ron is the right leader for Jumia who can create value for customers and vendors by marrying Jumia’s numerous assets with the opportunities ahead.”

Kawamara has extensive experience leading, innovating and scaling technology businesses globally, including having guided Jumia Food through critical transformation periods. Through his startup experience, Ron has frequently worked with SMEs to effect business models that embrace technological changes.

“I cannot imagine a more important and exciting time to join Jumia,” said Kawamara. “With a massive, diverse and highly engaged audience, a market-leading online business, a best-in-class product portfolio and an extremely passionate and talented group of people, Jumia is well-positioned to capture an even greater market opportunity. As a lifelong entrepreneur and exuberant technology enthusiast, this is the perfect opportunity to combine my industry experience with my love for business. I look forward to working with this great team, having a lot of fun, and leading Jumia through its next exciting phase.”

Meanwhile,  this year’s Black Friday campaign was also launched during the event. Black Friday is a massive sales event that will run from November 16th to December 7th, 2018. The campaign is normally characterized by a buzz of activities at Jumia as online shoppers enjoy the best deals.

 “This year will be our biggest campaign yet,” Ron noted. “We’ve invested in a lot in negotiating with retailers so that we can give our customers the best value. We shall feature discounts of up to 70% on over 5000 products and shoppers will enjoy free delivery for purchases over 200,000 UGX.”

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Local Business

Emirates rewards Ugandan winners in the global destinations competition



The Emirates Country Manager Puneet Kohli (2R) poses with some of the winners in the emirates radio competition.

The Emirates Country Manager Puneet Kohli (2R) poses with some of the winners in the Emirates radio competition.

Emirates, the world’s largest international airline, has rewarded lucky Ugandan winners in the Emirates global destination competition. The just concluded competition was aimed at having listeners answer questions about Emirates’ global destinations and create awareness about the airline’s products and services.

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The winners participated in a two-week competition where two winners were chosen every Friday at the end of the week. The winners received Emirates amenities that were handed over by the Emirates Country Manager to Uganda, Mr. Puneet Kohli, who applauded them for their knowledge on Emirates.

“This goes to show that many people know a lot about Emirates and its products, services and global destinations. Our decision to reward these fans reflects our commitment to everyone who knows about our business. We have received immense feedback and we thank everyone who contributed to the competition,” said Mr. Puneet Kohli.

Emirates boasts of an unrivaled on board product experience with the world’s best infight entertainment system, ICE, which offers over 3,500 channels of entertainment including over 100 kids channels and 850 movies from around the world. Travelers can enjoy chef prepared regional and international cuisines using the freshest ingredients, accompanied by a wide range of complimentary wines and beverages. All this is complemented by the airline’s international team of over 21,000 cabin crew come from over 135 countries.

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Local Business

Over 50 women lawyers trained in financial literacy



Victoria Byenkya, the Manager dfcu Women in Business speaking to women lawyers during the training

Victoria Byenkya, the Manager dfcu Women in Business speaking to women lawyers during the training.

Under the Women in Business (WiB) program, dfcu bank in partnership with the Uganda Law Society (ULS), recently held a financial literacy training session for over 50 women lawyers in Kampala. The session conducted at the dfcu Head offices in Nakasero last Friday is a component of the programme aimed at inspiring and empowering women to tackle the challenges faced in the business environment.

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Commenting on the women lawyers’ training, Jacqueline Namazzi, Chairperson ULS Female Lawyers Committee said; “dfcu has a strong partnership with the female lawyer’s committee. We work with them and we come in to advise their businesswomen especially those who work in Kikuubo, but this time we felt that the female lawyers themselves needed financial literacy training. We know so much about the law, about court, but little on personal and business finances. We felt that the lawyers needed that extra education. It’s not a bad idea for them to be exposed to the different investment and saving avenues that the bank offers but also mainly how to manage finances.”

“Investment avenues are out there but managing ones’ own finances as a person, as a law firm whether you are in government or civil society is daunting and that is why we decided to be part of the financial literacy training to gain that extra skill set.” Jacqueline added.

According to Victoria Byenkya, Manager Women in Business, women bring their own unique perspective and voice to the world of finance and as their voice becomes more prevalent, everyone will continue to benefit from the financial literacy conversation. “More women today are realizing the importance of being financially literate. They feel more empowered to control their personal, family and business finances,” she added.

“From the training I was able to be educated about the basics – things that you know but don’t really do. The more you hear them, you realize the need to take action on saving, investment and living a simple life. I would highly recommend more sessions for financial literacy are set up for us and of course, I appreciate dfcu bank for putting this together” said Charlotte Nalumansi one of the trainees.

So far, a total of 1,370 women have benefited from the dfcu WiB business trainings since the start of the year. Since inception of the programme in 2007 over 25,000 women have benefited from the capacity building sessions.

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