Nigeria: Julius Berger eyes oil and power deals as it looks to diversify business
(Ecofin Agency) - Julius Berger Nigeria Plc, says it has signed a partnership agreement with Petralon Energy for the acquisition and development of oil fields in Niger Delta, as part of efforts to diversify its business.
According to its Managing Director, Wolfgang Goetsch, the company is also in talks with about eight investors to construct power plants.
“Within Nigeria, we aim to diversify our business beyond our core competence of civil engineering, looking into power and oil and gas or to diversify outside the country but only in our core business. We believe with strategic partners that we are more attractive to clients who want to have a whole industrial or power plant,” he said without providing further details.
The Abuja-based company, is also thinking of expanding to Ghana, Benin and Ivory Coast, where it has conducted market studies.
Julius Berger is the largest construction company in Nigeria. As the Nigerian economy contracted in 2015, the company recorded a $9.2 million profit the year after, more than 60% lower than in the three years preceding the contraction. Indeed, 2016 was a particularly difficult year for the company as it struggled to raise funds from parallel markets to fulfil its foreign exchange obligations. It was also forced to restructure and cut costs.