After securing another good financial year despite the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic along with increased cost from discontinued operations, Seprod Limited said that the company is further seeking to expand its distribution footprint in the domestic and international markets.
Speaking in a livestream of the company’s 81st annual general meeting held on Monday, Richard Pandohie, managing director and chief executive officer (CEO), said that while the business has doubled down on equipment investment and retooling activities over the last few years, the entity now intends to give greater focus to distribution (domestic and export), warehousing and logistics.
“These areas are the lifeblood of the organisation connecting our factories, production and the brands of our partners to consumers and customers. We are projected to spend a total in excess of $2.5 billion to build out and consolidate our warehousing operation and create a distribution organisation that will be cost competitive, agile and with a customer footprint second to none,” he told shareholders present at the Jamaica Pegasus hotel in Kingston.
Pandohie said that with the first phase of the project done last year, the commencement of the second phase, which has already started, is expected to be completed by the third quarter of next year. With the company’s foray into the Trinidad markets through its Serge and Supligen brands, it further hopes to take advantage of export opportunities in other countries of the region including Guyana, where the group already operates other types of business.
“Opportunities do not come in a linear fashion and if opportunities came for purchasing and distribution business or working closely with the people that we work with or any opportunity, we will certainly look at that, but we do have relations in Guyana that we would want to grow and maintain.” “We see Guyana as a big opportunity, we’re going to work with our partners in that country to continue in building out that market,” said Seprod’s Chairman P B Scott in responding to questions from shareholders.
Among the new products up for disribution are Supligen’s newly added cookie & cream and coffee flavours as well as a gluten-free cassava flour which was launched a week ago.
“We are targeting a 20 uplift in volumes primarily by increased export sales. We have a very active innovation pipeline, as this will be key to improving our volume and profitability. The target is to launch a minimum of three new products quarterly, some will be renovations of existing products,” Pandohie told the Business Observer.
Source: Jamaica Observer
By: KELLARAY MILES