MOROCCO – After more than two months of absence from Morocco’s Casablanca Stock Exchange, Central Danone, subsidiary of French beverage giant Danone, is back on North Africa’s biggest stock exchange.
The mother company had previously filed a motion to delist from the Casablanca Stock Exchange in December 3, 2021
Morocco’s Capital Market Authority (AMMC), the Casablanca Stock Exchange watchdog, approved the motion to suspended the listing of the dairy company’s shares trading in the Moroccan Stock Exchange effective December 6, 2021.
The move was triggered by low share liquidity values, which had been on a down-ward spiral following a boycotting campaign in 2018 against the brand, triggered by consumers’ complaints of high prices.
The boycott caused the dairy company to bleed €13.5 million (US$15.1m) in the first half of 2018, resulting in a total loss amounting to 40% of the market share.
It in turn introduced a low-cost milk product, declaring that it will not abandon the Moroccan market.
Despite taking control of the situation, the group was again met by a new wave of boycotting of French products in 2020 following an alleged controversial publication in France.
New calls for boycott emerged again in 2021 as online groups called for denouncing France’s decision to slash by half the number of visas granted to Moroccans.
Controlling a market share of 30%, Centrale Danone is the country’s largest dairy company, boasting of having over 28 dairy products with the Centrale Fresh milk product being the most popular.
Despite the dairy giant experiencing a bumpy ride in the North African market, Danone, recently marked its diamond jubilee celebrations in the Nigeria, operating under Fan Milk Plc.
Celebrating sixty years of operations in the West African country, the company opened a new state-of-the-art frozen dairy product line in Ibadan, Oyo State.
The new facility, constructed at a cost of £8m (US$9m), show cased the company’s commitment to strengthening local investments which would result in improved production capacity, efficiently fulfill demands, and ensure production of high quality and nutritious products to all customers nationwide.
This investment will be bolstered by the construction of a new yoghurt line expected to open by June 2022.
In abroad, Danone UK & Ireland is the latest business to enter the elite group of certified B Corp businesses following the accreditation of its Specialised Nutrition business.
With the accreditation, Danone claims to be the first combined food and healthcare manufacturer in the UK and Ireland to become a B Corp company as verified by non-profit B Lab.