A new Heineken factory opened in Ethiopia on 15 January 2015. During the opening speech, the local Managing Director Johan Doyer said that over 800 locals will be employed in the building of the Heineken brewery. Moreover, about 200 additional workers will be needed for external operations, and 6,000 farmers (a growing number expected to reach 20,000) will supply barley to the factory. Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn, present at the opening event, said in his remarks that “Heineken’s investment is a testament of the confidence of foreign investors in this country”. The new brewery will initially focus on local brands Hamar and Bedele, but could start producing the premium Heineken brand next year.
This facility is the third brewery of Heineken in Ethiopia, where the group already invested near to 300 million euros. Worth 110 million euros, the facility has a capacity of 1.5 million hectolitres and is the largest in the country. During a video interview for CNBC Africa last May, Jean-Francois van Boxmeer, CEO of Heineken International, explained that Africa was the fastest-growing region for the group and accounted for 20 percent of its revenue. The investments of the group are therefore focused on this continent, where Heineken is present since the 1920s. Today, Heineken owns 57 breweries and plants in Africa and is selling beer in the majority of African countries.
Special thanks to the Dutch Embassy in Ethiopia for the picture and for providing us with information. Other sources: Reuters, CNBC Africa.