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April 2015 Newsletter

I don't think it is too late to say Happy New Year to you all and to your families. May 2015 be a fruitful and positive year for you.

As you will all know 2014 was a year of many challenges in Africa. Economic volatility increased, commodity prices declined, growth rates slowed, Government spending declined, purchasing power declined and currencies largely depreciated. On top of this, violence continued in some of our markets throughout the year and sadly some Governments showed little desire to protect their citizens. Our hearts and sympathies are with all those innocent families who have lost loved ones in these conflicts. Of course as usual our thanks go to those Promasidor employees that continue to show great resilience, courage and commitment by continuing to work with such dedication in some challenging situations. 2015 has started in much the same vein as 2014 and we expect the year to be challenging.

In the face of these uncertainties it is therefore important to reiterate that the company's strategy hasn't changed, that Promasidor remains 100% committed, positive and focused on Africa. In addition, whilst we all spend our days driving short-term performance, I believe Promasidor is also making the right long term decisions that will secure Promasidor's long term future. Nonetheless we will only succeed in each country if locally we are close to the consumer, and being able to react swiftly to the rapidly changing market conditions in which we operate. Hence as we are proud to say at Promasidor, we are not a multi-national company, but a multi-local company, which means we have a decentralised management structure where the local management teams have the freedom to take the big decisions. It's a key advantage we have over the more centralised management structures of the multi-nationals, and I believe this fundamental key attribute of Promasidor will enable us all to be the winners. So despite the uncertain business environment, I hope you still feel you belong to the winning team.

Nonetheless despite these challenges, and the negativity of record high milk powder prices, it is pleasing to announce another year of growth for Promasidor with annual sales for the group up by 7% to $828m. We also achieved some major milestones in 2014 with the launch of our cereal brand Yumvita and the continuing advance of the Onga tablets and cubes in all the markets where we currently sell these products. However this publication continues to showcase developments and innovation at Promasidor so read the stories and I hope they provide pleasure, pride and a bit of inspiration. So my thanks and congratulations to everyone at Promasidor for another successful year. And of course many thanks to our many customers who continue to recognise great value in our products and who therefore continue to support us.

May I close by thanking everyone again for all their efforts in 2014 and may I wish you great success in 2015. I am confident that 2015 will be another exciting year for Promasidor, despite the turbulent times. Promasidor's success has always been built on dedicated employees who understand their markets, are committed and well organised. This is no better illustrated by the article on Promasidor Nigeria's sales conference which was given the title "Resilience: Thriving in Tough Times." In summary therefore, these times are tough, but still exciting and because we are always so resilient at Promasidor, our markets are still full of opportunities. So just get out there and seize them!

Mark Rose

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