ELF-branded lu­bri­cants will not com­pete with other brands in Egypt: Al Ma­nar CEO


The Daily News Egypt - - Business - By Yara Al-Ganayny

Al Ma­nar Trad­ing & Dis­tri­bu­tion Com­pany (AMTD) has signed an agree­ment with To­tal Egypt to ex­clu­sively dis­trib­ute ELFbranded lu­bri­cants in Egypt.

The com­pany, which is a sub­sidiary of Al Ma­nar Group, will dis­trib­ute 20 lu­bri­cant prod­ucts, in­clud­ing en­gine oils, gear oils, hy­draulic oils, and other au­to­mo­tive flu­ids.

Ahmed Nawara, manag­ing di­rec­tor and CEO of Al Ma­nar Group, said that the ELF-branded lu­bri­cants “will be fully man­u­fac­tured in­side To­tal plants in Borg El Arab, Alexan­dria.” He noted that Elf is ranked sec­ond in terms of lu­bri­cants in the Maghreb re­gion.

Nawara explained that To­tal Egypt has cho­senAl-Ma­nar to be the ex­clu­sive dis­trib­u­tor of its prod­ucts due to its sig­nif­i­cance pres­ence in the dis­tri­bu­tion and mar­ket­ing sec­tor, stress­ing that the com­pany does not aim to com­pete with any other brand. Al-Ma­nar will not spon­sor the Africa Cup of Na­tions and will not launch ad­ver­tis­ing cam­paigns to mar­ket the prod­ucts.

“Egypt’s in­vest­ment cli­mate has gained more attraction in var­i­ous fields in­clud­ing en­gine oils, as ev­i­denced in the keen­ness of ma­jor global cor­po­ra­tions and en­ti­ties to have a pres­ence and in­vest in Egypt,” Nawara said.

Nawara said that ElF-branded lu­bri­cants have al­ready been traded in Egypt, but the new agree­ment will lo­calise the mix­ing and pack­ag­ing process in Egypt, so the prod­ucts will be avail­able at more af­ford­able prices. He pointed out that the raw ma­te­ri­als of lu­bri­cants will be im­ported fromTo­tal In­ter­na­tional, but the mix­ing and pack­ag­ing will be con­ducted in Egypt.

Nawara pointed out that AlMa­nar has a strong dis­tri­bu­tion net­work for French car parts, in­clud­ing Re­nault, Peu­geot, and Citroen, since 1975. It is also the of­fi­cial dis­trib­u­tor of Bendix oils, which ranked first in terms of brake fluid in the Egyp­tian mar­ket. He noted that ELF has 46 years of pres­ence in For­mula 1, with the ex­cep­tion of last year only.

He as­serted that Al-Ma­nar does not in­tend to en­ter into com­pe­ti­tion with Shell,To­tal, or Mo­bil, though it aims to ac­quire a big­ger mar­ket share of the Re­nault spare parts as well as the diesel mar­ket.

Al-Ma­nar will not re­ceive even 1% of the mar­ket, which con­tains 700,000 tonnes of dif­fer­ent oils, but the main ob­jec­tive is to suc­ceed in mar­ket­ing the new prod­uct that proved to be suc­cess­ful in sim­i­lar coun­tries, such as Morocco, Tu­nisia, and Al­ge­ria, es­pe­cially as th­ese coun­tries have fac­to­ries to as­sem­ble Re­nault models, which al­ways come with ELF lu­bri­cants.

He added that all the Re­nault com­pa­nies around the world are con­tract­ing with the To­tal ELF, ex­cept Re­nault Egypt which is con­tract­ing with To­tal Lu­bri­cants.

Nawara said that Al-Ma­nar is not al­lowed to contract with the agents of car com­pa­nies or petrol sta­tions, as To­tal, the prod­uct pro­ducer, can contract with Re­nault Egypt for ELF oils, con­trary to Al-Ma­nar, which is re­spon­si­ble for the ex­clu­sive dis­tri­bu­tion of the new prod­uct in the Egyp­tian mar­ket, not fac­to­ries or petrol sta­tions.The com­pany is not al­lowed to contract any prod­uct ex­cept for Ben­dex and Forma un­der the terms stip­u­lated in the contract with To­tal.

Nawara said the new prod­uct is equiv­a­lent to To­tal, Shell, and Mo­bil in terms of qual­ity, all of which are of a global stan­dard. And To­tal In­ter­na­tional is the man­u­fac­turer, so the price will be the driv­ing force for ELF to ac­quire a mar­ket share.

Al-Ma­nar will sup­port the new prod­uct with its ded­i­cated cen­tres in the fu­ture plan. It will also mar­ket the prod­uct through sales teams con­sist­ing of 11 cars be­long­ing to Al-Ma­nar.Al-Ma­nar will in­di­rectly dis­trib­ute the new prod­uct through a group of rov­ing vehicles in the gov­er­norates of Egypt to in­tro­duce the new prod­uct to con­sumers. Al-Ma­nar will also have a representa­tive


in all Re­nault ser­vice cen­tres to in­tro­duce the new prod­ucts.

The trader is a key fac­tor used byAl-Ma­nar to mar­ket the prod­uct.Al-Ma­nar seeks to es­tab­lish a suit­able profit for the mer­chant to prop­erly mar­ket the prod­uct and specif­i­cally to the own­ers of Re­nault cars.Al-Ma­nar will first mar­ket the prod­uct to the mer­chant be­fore mar­ket­ing it to the con­sumer through re­wards and gifts.The pack­age of Elf in­di­cates that it was man­u­fac­tured by To­tal, which will boost con­sumer con­fi­dence in it.

Fur­ther­more, Nawara con­firmed that the com­pany in­tends to ex­pand out­side Egypt into Libya and Su­dan, if ELF proves suc­cess­ful in Egypt, as with the Bendix brand, after its suc­cess in Egypt. More­over,AlMa­nar was granted the Bendix dis­tri­bu­tion agency in Mada­gas­car in Fe­bru­ary.

On the im­pact of the ex­change rate on ELF prod­ucts, he said that it will not be af­fected by the de­cline or ap­pre­ci­a­tion of the dollar be­cause the com­pany buys the prod­uct from To­tal in lo­cal cur­rency, while the rest of the com­pany’s prod­ucts have been af­fected by the de­cline in the dollar price. He pointed out that the new prod­uct does not con­flict with the rest of the com­pany’s prod­ucts be­cause the new prod­uct is spe­cial for mo­tor and gear oils, while Ben­dex is a brake oil.

More­over, Nawara said the re­cent boy­cott cam­paign did not af­fect the Egyp­tian oil mar­ket. He pointed out that the oil and spare parts sec­tor deals with used cars, not new cars that start chang­ing oil or re­place spare parts after 10 years from the date of pur­chase,not­ing that as elec­tric cars in­crease on the streets, Al-Ma­nar will of­fer the nec­es­sary spare parts and oil.

The com­pany also re­cently in­tro­duced Forma as a brake oil and a Forma trans­mis­sion oil last month. It will launch a new prod­uct un­der the same brand every six months. He noted that the com­pany put a 10-year plan for the brand, as it is now con­sid­er­ing to work in the spare parts sec­tor un­der the Forma brand or is­sue a new brand for spare parts to keep Forma as a brand for lu­bri­cants only. The com­pany will make a de­ci­sion on this in the fu­ture.

To­tal Egypt is a sub­sidiary of French en­ergy gi­ant To­tal, es­tab­lished in 1998.The com­pany is ac­tive in the en­tire petroleum prod­uct dis­tri­bu­tion value chain, in­clud­ing gen­eral sales, lu­bri­cants, ma­rine, and avi­a­tion, as well as re­tail.

Ahmed Nawara

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