This change was approved at a meeting of SNI’s board of directors on March 28 in Casablanca, said the company in a statement noting that expanding in Africa was a decision taken in 2014.
Some 6.5 billion dirhams have been invested by former SNI, now Al Mada, in Africa, the company said, adding that now the bulk of the company’s activities are focused on Africa.
Al Mada currently operates in 24 African countries including Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroun, Côte d’Ivoire, Egypt, Ethiopia, Gabon, Guinea Conakry, Equatorial Guinea, Mali, Mauritius, Mauritania, Niger, CAR, DRC, Congo Brazzaville, Rwanda, Senegal, Sudan, Chad, Togo and Tunisia. It also operates in Belgium, France and the United Arab Emirates.
In 2013, SNI started withdrawing its activities from the food industry. It sold its stakes in dairy firm Centrale Laitière to French partner Danone, and the remaining 50 percent holding in biscuit maker Bimo to Kraft Heinz Company. It also sold the sole operator in Morocco’s sugar industry, Cosumar, in 2015.
Al Mada now plans to focus its growth strategy on sectors such as tourism, telecoms and renewable energy and to expand in Africa.
Rabat has recently launched a major renewable energy development plan, designed to turn the North African country into a main supplier of clean electricity to Europe. SNI’s subsidiary Nareva has been a major player in the plan with heavy investment.
SNI is the main shareholder in some of the country’s biggest firms, including AttijariWafa Bank, miner Managem, energy firm Nareva, cement company Lafarge Maroc and Marjane, Morocco’s main supermarket chain.