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LafargeWapco invests N70b to increase cement production

Apr, 25 2012


(Nigeria)  --  Lafarge Wapco has increased its production capacity to about 8.5 million metric tonnes. This is due to the combined production capacity from its Atlas Cement in Port Harcourt, Ashaka Cement in Gombe and part ownership of Unicem.

In a chat with The Nation at the just concluded fourth Nigeria Infrastructure & Construction Exhibition, Seminar & Product Showcase held in Lagos, Senior Marketing Manager Rilwan Yusuf, said the firm came up with the new product, ‘Elephant Super Set,’ to meet the identifiable needs of customers in the building and construction sector. He said the product targets block makers in the pre-cast and concrete business.

Another new product from the stable of the company is the company’s power max, a top grade quality cement of 42.5 strength. The cement type, he said, is made to drive infrastructure development of roads, bridges and high rise buildings compared to other cement in the market which he alleged are neither flexible nor open to other uses.

Stressing his company’s belief in innovation and flexibility, he said: " Our belief in innovation as a company is so strong that we pursue flexibility and refuse in all its entirety the ‘one size fits-all theory’ in our quest to satisfy the emergent needs of stakeholders in the sector.

In a related development, the General Manager, Lafarge Ready Mix Nigeria Ltd, Mr Chris Lobel, said the idea behind the new product is to have a clear strategy as a project enabler that drives quality and innovation while promoting sustainable environment for the real estate sector by checking incessant building collapse occasioned by poor quality craftsmanship in concrete mix and application.

He said: "The new product remains a clear solution to poor quality construction standards demonstrated by inappropriate mixing of materials by poorly trained artisans leading to collapse of structures."

Lobel said the product has remained popular in advanced economies where quality is encouraged and urged developers and individuals alike to patronise them to achieve predetermined outlook.

On how it works, he said: "A prospective client will only need to indicate the size of his project and the concrete mix will be brought to his site already mixed to specification. The advantage of this arrangement is that there are no wastes, price variations or question of running out of materials or cash because of poor calculation of materials needed before the onset of the project. There will also be no question of inappropriate mixing of materials that will lead to having either too much sand or less cement and water in the mixing ratio". According to him, traditionally when one is building, he will buy granite, cement, sand and water in addition to procuring labour to get it done.

"But with the cutting edge technology we save you from these hassles by buying all that is needed, mix it in our standard factory and bring it straight to where it is needed. In this case the issue of inappropriate mixing of materials is eliminated."

He said the company has invested over €3 million and taken delivery of 25 trucks to make the project a success in any part of the country. Responding to a question on the size of project they can conveniently handle, Lobel said naturally they prefer large volume jobs such as estates and areas where construction is going on to drive the cost down.

However, he explained that they are not involved in actual construction but the provision of pre-mix concrete for construction thereby applying the highest standards in pre-mix technology as obtainable in advanced economies.

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