It began with a simple cocoa buying business way back in the 1980’s when the so called company Arania Enterprise Limited (AEL) was incorporated and gets its license a few years later to export cocoa to overseas markets.
In those days, the Fono family had never dreamt of achieving and or owning a property like what has just sprouted out from the cocoa beans they have nurtured and groomed for the past 20 years.
July 31 2014 will be a memorable day for the Fono family and the company who has for many years of struggle and hardships have managed to survive and achieved the unthinkable that has now become a reality.
The opening of the company’s new commercial building in the heart of Auki town speaks volumes and is a millstone achievement for the company, Malaita province and the country as a whole in growing the economy.
The new $4 million building has changed the face of Auki Township with added shopping and office space for the growing population of Malaita in terms of the service benefits and economic opportunities.
“To God be the glory, great things he has done.” These are the words of Erick Fono, chairman Arania board of directors during the opening of their new complex yesterday in Auki.
Mr Fono said the building reflects the vision of his father for them to carry on from what he left and progress on further with the business despite the difficulties that lies ahead in the stiff road to success.
He said such achievement cannot come about without the support of the community through collaboration and working in partnership to strengthen and grow in any business undertaking.
Mr Fono added that despite taking eighteen months to complete the building, the challenges that the company has gone through were the strengths of the company to achieve such project.
He said the company has decided to venture into the property business because this is one of the safest business undertaking to strengthen and bring more growth to the business.
Meanwhile he acknowledged the Malaita provincial government for their continuous support towards local businesses on Malaita.
Fono urged both the provincial and national governments to recognize the struggles of indigenous business men and women in the country and support them in some way to foster growth not only for their business endeavors but to holistically build the local economy.
The department of commerce within the Malaita provincial government has truly intrigued and proud of the achievement Arania enterprises had achieved.
“We feel proud and honored to see our local enterprises taking serious steps every day to address the needs of our people through service delivery at their doorstep,” Donation Mane, principal commerce officer of Malaita said.
Mr Mane added that it requires a mixer of courage, perseverance, discipline and passion to take someone this far.
Adding the province is proud for the sacrifice the company has taken to service the people of Malaita.
Malaita premier Edwin Suibaea while congratulating Arania on its achievement, reminded other Malaitan businessmen and women that his government will do whatever it can through its town and country planning board and the land allocation board to enable locals achieve such goal.
“This marks a new and milestone chapter in the history of Arania. This directly reflects your efforts over the years and reflects the service and business …I would like to remind all Malaitan business men and women that Auki is the capital of Malaita province.
“The gateway and hub of socio-economic activities in the province. It is us whom we own land and do business in Auki therefore must construct well designed buildings with comfortable environment to provide quality and decent services to Malaitans and the public,” Suibaea said.
Mr Suibaea said his government want to prioritize Malaitan business entrepreneurs and will continue to promote and protect them.
Today Arania enterprise is one of the leading buyers and exporter of cocoa in the country. It seeks to serve local cocoa farmers throughout the country to ensure farmers get the maximum benefit from their products and help support them with incentives that could boost their production.
Arania has its offices in Auki and Honiara making easier business access for its customers.
Meanwhile the new commercial building will house shops on its ground floor and offices on the first floor.
Its great ocean view overlooking the famous Langa-Langa lagoon and the Auki harbor makes it a perfect building for any business transaction.
Its location close to the Auki market makes it even easier for shoppers to do both their market and shopping without any hustle.
It is a locally owned business striving for success in the cocoa and property business in the country.
“Building trust and confidence with our farmers and buyers is the weapon taking us this far,” Mr Fono added.
By DANIEL NAMOSUAIA