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01 May 2014

Mohammed "Mo" Dewji, Youngest Member On Africa Richest List Launches Beverage Line - "Mo COLA"

Mohammed ‘MO’ Dewji, the youngest member on the Forbes’ Africa richest list, is on track to becoming Africa’s richest man by 2023.
And by all accounts he is well on his way; with a net worth of USD $500 million, a diversified conglomerate with an annual turnover of approximately USD $1.3 billion and a recent announcement that A-One Products and Bottlers Ltd, a subsidiary of his company, MeTL Group has introduced a line of carbonated soft drinks in a variety of different flavors backed by a financial infusion of over USD $48 million. The investment includes development of state of the art manufacturing facilities with three world-class production lines which have a production capacity of 36 million crates per annum.

Speaking over the phone, Dewji explained that the launch of the new beverage line, which will include carbonated and non-carbonated soft drinks in over twenty varieties under the premium umbrella brand called “MO” was “a natural extension of growth” and of what his company, A-One “already produces for the market.” A-One Products and Bottlers Ltd began its operations in 1997, producing and distributing its successful brands of water; Masafi  (which means clean in Swahili), Maisha (which means life in Swahili), Just Chill which combined have 35% of the Tanzanian market share and Pride, the popular juice beverage line which has 45% market share. Even though Coca Cola and Pepsi have significant market share in Tanzania in the carbonated beverages sector and therefore are the biggest competitors, Dewji explained that his company MeTL’s biggest strength is distribution.

The new beverage line includes several unique flavors; Cola, Orange, Mango, Lemon and Malt. Additionally the initial launch will include energy drink “MO” Bomba which will compete with Red Bull and a new innovative drink “MO” Sheeba Shake. Dewji explained that “MO” Sheeba Shake is a “carbohydrate and protein-rich product” and because it is a “cereal-based beverage suitable for children and adults, it could also be used as a meal substitute.”


A-One began its operations in 1997 initially producing PET (polyethylene terephthalate) preforms and bottles and filling beverages. By 2001, the company expanded its activities to produce buckets and lids as well as HDPE [high-density polyethylene] jerry cans.  In 2007, A-One introduced a cup and sheet making division to cater to the requirements of the local Tanzanian population. Seventeen years later, A-One employs more than 1,100 people and has a fleet of over 100 vehicles that provide door-to-door service to their customers.
Dewji explained that the beverages subsidiary contributes 2% of the total group revenue.



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