AFRICANGLOBE – Aliko Dangote, the owner of Africa’s largest industrial conglomerate, Dangote Group, has announced a multi-million dollar Joint Venture (JV) deal with the Italian construction giant Saipem. This will birth a new company to be named Saipem-Dangote Engineering and Construction (E&C).
A statement by Devakumar Edwin, group executive director of the Dangote Group, revealed that the new JV will focus on securing complex engineering and construction projects across Nigeria, Africa’s largest economy. It will also explore lucrative projects in other markets on the continent.
“We are confident that our partnership with Saipem will position us as a major player in the oil and gas sector,” said Edwin.
The agreement is seen by analysts as a perfect marriage, especially with Dangote’s financial clout in Africa, which they believe will complement Saipem’s unique capabilities in the Engineering and Construction sector. “Dangote Industries and Saipem shall gain mutual benefit from this partnership,” Edwin said.
Dangote Group’s position in the oil and gas sector will also receive a boost by the new deal. It is currently developing a $9 billion oil refinery and petrochemical complex in Nigeria. The refinery is expected to be completed before 2017.
Dangote’s business acumen is highly respected across Africa. The new deal is seen as his way of exploiting the imminent opportunities inherent in the engineering and construction sector over the next few decades as countries across the continent focus on building infrastructure.