Breweries takes Angola on
Angola is a key building-block in Namibia Breweries’ export strategy as the country is currently the third largest beer market in Africa.
“There is a great opportunity for NBL’s 100% Pure Beer in the Angola market, from the nature of our product, as well as our historical ties to this country,” says Antonio Simoes, Namibia Breweries’ market manager for Angola & Mozambique.
Namibia Breweries Limited (NBL) started exporting to Angola in 2002, with Windhoek Special being the first export product. Currently NBL exports Windhoek Lager, Windhoek Draught, Windhoek Light and Tafel Lager to its northern neighbour. NBL products are available through Shoprite outlets in Angola as well as in all the hip and trendy bars and restaurants on the Island in Luanda. NBL has a distributor in Luanda who warehouses, markets and sells its products in the capital, Lobito, and in the Huambo areas.
NBL however says that there are always challenges when exporting to another country. One of the challenges of exporting to Angola is the 50% import duty which causes some limitations to growth due to high pricing.
Simoes adds: “Duties have always restricted real growth. There is also speculation that the duties might be increased in the near future. The Kwanza, Angola’s currency, has devalued by. 20% over the past four years making our products more expensive. There is also less liquidity in the market and therefore fewer funds are available outside Luanda, which are all factors hampering penetration of the market and gain in market share. Another challenge facing us is the long cycle between product delivery and cash in the bank. Most outlets purchase stock on credit and this can become a high risk in our business.”
When asked what could be done to overcome some of these challenges, Simoes said: “Exports is a key component of our strategy to build sustainable businesses, in line with our group’s purpose of creating a future and enhancing life, and supporting the attainment of our country’s Vision 2030. Therefore, the facilitation of bi-lateral trade agreements to reduce the duties on beer produced in Namibia, and engagements with Customs & Excise on both sides to simplify cross-border processes, can go a long way in enhancing trade and ultimately growing our economy.”
Despite these challenges, NBL is continuously looking for innovative ways of doing business in Angola as its proudly Namibian beer deserves to be shared in Africa and the rest of the world.
NBL also exports to a number of other African destinations including Botswana, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Cameroon, and Kenya. “Exports boosts our Namibian economy, but unfortunately each country has its own set of regulations and unique challenges which we need to tackle in order to make it a sustainable business,” Simoes says.