(Business in Cameroon) - The Société nationale d’investissement (SNI – National Investment Company), extension of the Cameroonian State in terms of creation companies and buying into their capital, should soon be reorganised, revealed the Minister of Mine, Industry and Technological Development, Ernest Gbwaboubou.
During a press conference organised on 29 December 2016 in the Camroonian capital, this government member announced that SNI, which will be turned into a real holding, will not manage two investment funds.
This is firstly, we learned, the National Strategic Investments Fund (FONIS), which will require at first funding estimated at FCfa 450 billion. Though he did not reveal the conditions to raise this financing, Minister Gbwaboubou specified that FONIS will be dedicated to investments in major infrastructure projects launched by the government.
Then there will be the Industrial Development Support Fund (FADI). Based on the explanations provided by Ernest Gbwaboubou, this fund will be active in the capital-risk sector, being a financing mechanism which consists in buying shares in enterprises still fragile or in difficulty, and to withdraw once they have reached a certain balance or a comfortable development threshold.
Through this announced restructuring, the Cameroonian SNI can thus have a vision similar to the one of the Moroccan SNI, an investment holding owned by the Moroccan royal family; and which has a presence in all the sectors of the country’s economy, including real estate, construction, bank, telecoms, energy, industry, mass retail, mining, media, tourism…
This holding indeed owns big Moroccan groups such as Attijariwafa, which set out to take on the African banking market; insurer Wafa assurances, which SNI co-owns with Attijariwafa Bank; Nareva Holding, an independent electricity producer with major African ambitions; Lafarge-Holcim Maroc Afrique, which owns for example Cimencam in Cameroon.
Brice R. Mbodiam