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YAMAHA EXPANDS INTO AFRICA

Yamaha has established a joint-venture operation in Nigeria to manufacture and distribute motorcycles. This new company, called CFAO Yamaha Motor Nigeria, should be in production by the summer of 2015 and is targeting 70,000 sales annually by 2018.

The JV partner in this enterprise is formerly French multinational Compagnie Francaise de l’Afrique Occidentale (CFAO), which is now controlled by Japan’s Toyota Tsusho Corporation, part of the Toyota Group. CFAO has a presence in more than 30 African countries and is a major automotive distributor throughout the continent.

The factory will be constructed on a site already owned by CFAO in Nigeria’s largest city Lagos. However, it isn’t the first Nigerian Yamaha plant. That opened in 1980 and shut down in 2005, when the local market temporarily declined.

With a rapidly growing population of currently 170 million and increasing prosperity due to oil exports, the Nigerian motorcycle market was more than 1.3 million units last year and is forecast to reach 1.8 million by 2020. Honda has an established bike manufacturing presence in Nigeria too.

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