$87 million “Deposit for Share” manoeuvre by Cocoa Processing Company directors uncovered

February 21, 2024
Nana Agyenim Boateng Managing Director Cocoa Processing Company
Digital rendering of Managing Director Cocoa Processing Company Nana Agyenim Boateng

In a recent statement, , Vice President of , has shed light on questionable financial manoeuvres at Cocoa Processing Company (CPC), Ghana's government-controlled chocolate maker. Despite accumulating over $150 million in losses by 2022, CPC's directors employed a strategic move to avoid an auditors' warning of imminent collapse, obtaining a “going concern” opinion.

The auditors' red flag was sidestepped by inserting a mysterious $87 million “deposit for share” item into equity, as revealed by Simons. The directors justified this move by citing a long-promised loan from Afreximbank/BADEA, facilitated through the Ghanaian government. The directors assured auditors that Afreximbank would disburse the funds no later than January 2024.

However, Simons argues that these financial gymnastics are mere distractions from the real issue — CPC's operational inefficiency and urgent need for a complete overhaul. The company currently holds a meagre 0.1% share of processed cocoa exports from Ghana and boasts the lowest plant utilization rate in the industry.

$87 million Deposit for Share manoeuvre by Cocoa Processing Company directors uncovered

Drawing attention to a 1980 Daily Graphic story titled “Keep Cocoa out of Politics” Simons emphasizes the need to insulate the cocoa industry from partisan politics for stable and efficient management. He echoes the sentiment that politicians controlling business must cease, underlining the imperative for impartial management to address the challenges faced by CPC.

$87 million Deposit for Share manoeuvre by Cocoa Processing Company directors uncovered

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