Business

Inside UBL Boss Nyimpini’s Exit

Uganda Breweries Limited (UBL) have let go of their Managing Director Mabunda Nyimpini after the expiry of his three-year contract, sildenafil http://cstaab.com/wp-content/plugins/woocommerce/includes/class-wc-order-item-meta.php praising him for being innovative and growing the brand’s market share.

Effective August 1, http://centroilponte.com/wp-content/plugins/all-in-one-event-calendar/lib/date/date-time-zone.php 2016, http://crijpa.fr/wp-content/plugins/googleanalytics/tools/ga_cache.php Mark Ociiti Ongom, who has served as MD East Africa Breweries Limited (EABLi) will take over from the amiable Nyimpini.

Describing his time in Uganda as ‘eventful’ and ‘exciting’, Nyimpini revealed at a Thursday press conference in Kampala that he would not continue working for Diageo Plc which acquired majority shareholding in East African Breweries , the lead shareholder in UBL.

“It has been an exciting time for me in Uganda. This market is full of potential and many opportunities yet to be tapped into,” said Nyimpini as he prepared to leave for South Africa at the end of next month.

“Ugandans are not afraid to have fun and celebrate life; and I have enjoyed sharing in your moments through our brands.”

Ejection?

The exit of the UBL boss comes against the backdrop of reports that Nyimpini was being released for falling short of hitting quite ambitious targets.

EABL board chairman, Alan Shonubi refuted reports of ejecting Nyimpini, saying, during the latter’s tenure, “UBL returned to volume and market share growth despite the challenging trading environment.”

Shonubi further stated that Nyimpini has “zealously driven a step change in innovation resulting in the innovation net sales contribution to UBL quadrupling to 8 percent by end of F16. New to world brands like Senator Stout, Uganda Waragi Flavors and Ngule Lager and the relaunches of both Bell Lager and Uganda Waragi in their premium packs are a testament to his unwavering drive to strong performance.”

He further stated that, “a contract is a contract; his (Nyimpini) has expired.”

Opens Heart

However, in a candid response to Chimpreports, Nyimpini spoke about the challenges he faced at work.

One of them was the slowdown of Uganda’s economic growth which he said had made doing business “very difficult.”

He said the company had to “adjust our strategies from that point of view.”

His revelation underscores the challenges facing big corporations in Uganda in the wake of sluggish economic growth.

Uganda struggled with a 4.6 percent growth rate in the 2015/16 financial year, affecting profitability of many companies in the country.

Economists argue that persistent slow growth has scary effects that themselves reduce potential output and with it, demand and investment.

A slow growth pace leaves the economy more exposed to risks hence impacting aggregate demand for consumables including beer.

Nyimpini further revealed that the taxation environment has negatively affected the company, adding some brands’ prices had to be slashed to enable affordability.

This was because the raising of some brands’ prices as a result of high taxes had led to a slowdown in volume sales, according to Nyimpini.

Asked what he would have achieved for UBL had he stayed longer, Nyimpini said he would “accelerate distribution of brands to consumers.”

He further admitted that “all our brands are not available in every corner of Uganda”, something he hoped his successor Ociiti would address.

Nyimpini would have as well spent more of his energy and time in innovating new brands to give a variety in taste to customers hence tapping into new opportunities in the market.

South Africa

The outgoing UBL MD said he is returning to South Africa to spend more time with his family.

His wife and three kids were in Uganda for only one year before returning home. Two years down the road, Nyimpini says life has not been that rosy without his family.

He further said Diageo had proposed “fantastic opportunities” for him outside South Africa but chose to return home for family reasons.

It was during Nyimpini’s tenure that UBL’s whisky offerings came to life with opening of ‘House of Walker’, the first luxury brand outlet of its kind in Uganda; the Johnnie Walker signature lounges at Liquid Silk, Sky, Panamera and Bar 9 in Entebbe.

Shonubi heaped praises on Nyimpini, whom he said was great working with.

“His boundless energy and passion for brands, coupled with the fact that he is a marketer, have revived our brands and brought greater visibility to our enviable portfolio,” Shonubi said of Nyimpini.

Pressed to explain why the board was releasing such an industrious manager, Shonubi said Nyimpini thrived in an area where other equally capable managers could emerge.

Successor

On his part, Nyimpini expressed confidence that his successor Ociiti will “thoroughly enjoy the experience as well.”

Ociiti joined EABL in August 2014 as MD EABLi which is responsible for business in South Sudan, Rwanda, Burundi ad DRC.

Officials said Ociiti led the business in an “extremely volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous environment. Within his first year he doubled EABL’s contribution to the EABL group from around 5 percent to 10 percent.”

Shonubi observed that Ociiti’s strength in commercial and operational experience enabled him to successfully develop a robust distribution network in South Sudan and Rwanda, growing the Tusker Brand into the number one preferred beer brand in South Sudan; as well as achieving and maintaining market leadership in premium spirits in both Rwanda and South Sudan.

Armed with a Bachelor’s degree in Statistics from Makerere University and an MBA from Herriot Watt University, Edinburgh (UK), Ociiti spent 11 years in the oil industry with Shell International and another 8 with Airtel.

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