Following series of issues limiting the productivity of Nigeria’s downstream sector, which can be traced to constraints, ranging from inappropriate product pricing, bridging product supply, insecurity, irregular gas supply, pipeline vandalism, inadequate pipeline infrastructure and non-functional/under-functioning refineries among others, the Chief Executive Officer, Ardova Plc, Olumide Adeosun, in this interview vowed to change the narrative to tales of bold innovations, social investments, and local capacity development.
He envisage that under his leadership, the table will turn around.
He also said that he will make Ardova Plc a leader in Nigeria’s downstream sector with extensive distribution networks across the country and a wide range of top-quality energy products and services.
Tell us about your portfolio
I began my career at Price Waterhouse Cooper (PwC) in London in 1998, where I provided advisory services to a range of multinational clients in the financial sector.
In 2004, I worked as a consultant to British Petroleum (BP) Plc on a compliance program and eventually moved to join the company as Group Control Manager, BP Finance. At BP Plc, I assisted to deliver a successful organisational transformation program, reducing complexity across the firm’s global financial business processes.
Following the successful delivery of the transformation program, I held several commercial roles in BP Plc, eventually culminating in me playing a key role in the integrated supply and trading business.
I also supported the development of a West Africa trading and shipping strategy, which was instrumental in opening oil trades with Nigerian and West African counterparties. In 2011, I was appointed Vice President, Commercial Development & Operations for BPs Nigeria trading business, which delivered a gross profit of US$12m in the first year of operations in West Africa.
Prior to my recent appointment as Chief Executive Officer Ardova Plc, I led the Energy &Power (West Africa) Practice at Price Waterhouse Cooper.
I have held various leadership roles including, Head of Strategy Consulting for West Africa and Head of Capital Projects and Infrastructure where I was lead adviser on a number of multi-billion-dollar projects. Notably, I co-led the buy-side advisory of one of the largest acquisition deals in the Nigerian downstream oil and gas sector.
While at PwC, I contributed to leading industry publications including Nigeria’s Refining Revolution (2016), which still serves as a roadmap for local refining in Nigeria. In 2017, won the PwC Africa Values Award Winner.
What is your priority for Ardova
As the CEO of Ardova Plc, my priority is to set the framework and structures to make the company an institution in the oil and gas sector.
The Ardova Plc we are looking to create is one that is going to try to balance its portfolio; we’re strong on petrol or diesel and even stronger on lubricants but there are cleaner fuels most especially in the renewable energy space, and I think we really need to get into that space.
In five years’ time, I would like to see my portfolio become more balanced and therefore my balance sheet becomes more reflective of other income from other sources those sources for example solar.
How do you plan to make Ardova a major player in the industry
With extensive knowledge developed over 18 years of experience encompassing oil and gas, renewable energy, power, and strategy both locally and internationally, that alone show I have a proven track record of technical delivery, senior leadership, and strategic foresight.
For many, Ardova Plc is not a name that rings a bell most especially after it changed its brand name from Forte Oil two weeks ago but the company is gradually rising from obscurity to arguably a major player in the downstream sector.
As typical of emerging giants in the sector, the Company is primarily focused in the downstream sector with major operations in Petrol, lubricants, bitumen, LPG, and diesel space; however, under my leadership, the company will come out with braver ideas with the intention of being more of a product company.
The company we are looking to create is one that’s going to try to balance its portfolio. The company will have much more diverse income sources, which will come more from low carbon sources or non-traditional sources.
What other strategies should we look out for
We have a six thousand metric tonne facility in Apapa which have already been resuscitated. So we’re really going to add more products to our portfolio and with more emphasis on the lower carbon cleaner fields.
We believe it is important we run Energy Company in a way that does the least damage to the environment. We are going to try and convert 20 of our stations to run purely on renewable,” Adeosun said. “We’ll have generators only as back up.”
We will be devoting a lot of time and effort in developing renewable energy business, especially solar and will also look at leveraging the assets it currently possesses.
Under my leadership, Ardova is targeting 25 per cent revenue from low carbon and renewable sources within the next three years.
Our long and proud legacy gives us a vantage position from where we can see things differently about how energy is consumed today. It is from this platform we are building a new brand geared to lead to a future where energy is consumed differently, such that we are poised to deliver energy for a brave new world.
Just like in the old Forte Oil, we expect the same of the same in terms of governance as we look forward to having more independent directors.
What should shareholders anticipate under your leadership
Shareholders can be certain that the company will maximize the product flow and diversify its portfolio with the main intention of increasing the company’s revenue base.
They can expect full transparency and a progressive organization; they can expect us to be the leaders in terms of trying to move into the much talked about energy transition,” Adeosun said.
Even with a board range of stations at hand, we are planning on bringing more certified stations on board which will be different from the conventional ones currently available.
We will move out more and create more non-standard stations that are still stationed as we know it which will be really appealing and opening up our market to a whole new different set of demographics. We’re looking at about us adding 75 stations this year and the further 120 next year.