Puma seeks to grow domestic market share

Puma Energy Zimbabwe

HARARE – Puma Energy Zimbabwe (Puma), which moved into liquefied Petroleum Gas retailing at the beginning of the year, has set its eyes on growing its domestic market share.

Donatien Kodog, general manager Puma Energy Zimbabwe, said he was coming in to push the company’s market share across all of the firm’s products, including LPG.

“We believe in Zimbabwe and as an international company we continue to invest in Zimbabwe, by giving the country new products such as Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) and Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG),” said Mr Kodog.

The company’s head of Africa, Fadi Mitri, said Puma will spend about US$10 million on the project over the next five years.

“LPG is a very big avenue for us.

“Our first gas distribution started to work in the first quarter of 2023. Across Puma we are investing a minimum of US$60 million but in Zimbabwe a minimum of US$10 million over the next five years,” Mr Mitri said.

Mr Mitri said another avenue with massive opportunities for the company was in the lubricants and solar energy space.

Currently, the company’s lubricant products are manufactured in South Africa for distribution in the region.

The company is working on a plan to improve lubricant availability as well as obtain market share locally with a target to increase lubricant sales at a rate of one litre of lubricant for every hundred litres of fuel sold.

“On the lubricants side local production is not something that makes commercial sense today because you will need to bring the raw materials from a refinery, which is outside of Africa, which means you have to bring it by ship,” Mr Mitri said.

“There are a lot of quality issues when you have a supply chain that is so long. So, what we prefer doing is blending somewhere in Africa in Durban or Dar es Salam and then transport the lubricants by truck that allows us to have a very high quality African blended lubricant formulated in Switzerland.”

Puma is looking to provide new energy solutions such as solar and other energy types in the economy in order to reduce the burden on the national grid.

The energy company is targeting mining, agriculture and medical companies with its LNG supplies as it seeks to gain a sizable market share in the related operations sector.

The company has not been shy to invest in the country as they opened a diesel storage facility in Bulawayo which will guarantee supply to the southern zone of the country in the first quarter of this year.

One of the problems in Zimbabwe’s fuel industry is the consistency of supplies as the country depends on a supply chain that involves Mozambique, South Africa and even Namibia.

This demonstrates the confidence placed in Zimbabwe’s economy and development potential. These are new jobs created and also support the economic development of the country because we target urban but also rural areas.

Puma Energy is a leading global energy business, safely providing energy across six continents. Its downstream business segments include fuels, aviation, lubricants and bitumen. The company has 1,948 retail sites and it is present at 107 airports.

Puma’s purpose is energising communities to help drive growth and prosperity by sustainably serving customers’ needs in high potential countries around the world. – Herald