Sudanese and Egyptian businessmen and government officials gathered in Khartoum to inaugurate Takamol, Sudan's most technologically advanced cement plant, in the presence H.E. Dr. Awad Ahmed Al Jaz, Sudan's Minister of Industry, H.E. Mr. Adel Awad Soliman, Minster of State for Welfare and Social Security and H.E. Mr. Osman Salman Mohamed Noor, the General Commissioner of the Sudanese Social Security Investment Authority (SSIA)
ASEC Cement, which will control more than 12 million tons of annual cement production capacity by 2013 in five countries spanning from Algeria to Iraq-Kurdistan, announced today the inauguration of Takamol, its greenfield cement plant on the left bank of the River Nile some 320 kilometers north of the Sudanese capital of Khartoum.
The total investment cost for Al-Takamol Cement, which began production of clinker and cement in August of 2010, stands at US$ 252.7 million. The plant is 51% owned by ASEC Cement and 49% controlled by the Sudanese Social Security Investment Authority (SSIA), the entity that manages all pension funds in Sudan.
Al-Takamol produces superior quality cement under the brand name, ‘Sakhr El Sudan.’ In just under six months, Al-Takamol has penetrated the local market with a comprehensive marketing and commercial strategy that has allowed the company to capture a 6% market share in the early weeks of production. Sakhr El Sudan is now widely distributed in the core markets of Khartoum and Atbara as well as the remote regions of the country. By the end of October, market share had reached 13%.
“Sakhr El Sudan was produced under stringent quality control measures that have been proven to exceed all local and international industry standards and we are very proud to be producing the highest quality cement in Sudan,” said ASEC Cement Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Giorgio Bodo.
ASEC Cement is a Portfolio Company of ASEC Holding, Citadel Capital’s Platform Company for investments in the regional engineering and construction industry.
“This has been a very challenging plant,” said Bodo. “Al-Takamol is in a remote area on the left bank of the Nile; the location was dictated by its proximity to the limestone quarries that give the plant an important competitive advantage. Although we are accustomed to working in remote locations and to dealing with intense heat, the challenges at Al-Takamol were compounded by the fact that the two banks of the Nile were only recently connected by a bridge. Until only a few months before the end of construction, we had been working with pontoons.”
At Al-Takamol, ASEC Cement built 15 km of roads to connect the plant to government roads, erected a water treatment station connected to the plant by a 15-km-long pipeline, and contracted to build its own 42 MW captive power plant, which now provides all of Al-Takamol’s electricity needs.
“This tremendous effort gives us an important advantage over other factories now under construction in Sudan,” Bodo noted.
The plant, built with leading-edge technology that meets or exceeds national environmental standards, has a nominal capacity of 1.45 million tons per annum (MTPA) of clinker and 1.6 MTPA of cement.
The Al-Takamol plant employs 450 staff and has helped create the same number of indirect jobs. In line with ASEC Cement policy, Al-Takamol is already running a training program for Sudanese nationals and will prioritize the hiring of local staff. All ASEC Cement plants aim to replace Egyptian management and line personnel with highly trained local staff as operations come on-stream.
ASEC Cement is Citadel Capital’s platform investment for cement production in the emerging cement markets of the Middle East and Africa. Created by Citadel Capital and a group of leading co-investors, ASEC Cement is growing into a leading regional cement production group that will have a combined production capacity of approximately 12 million tons per annum in 2013 spanning five countries from Algeria to Iraq-Kurdistan. ASEC Cement is a Portfolio Company of ASEC Holding.
Citadel Capital (CCAP.CA on the Egyptian Stock Exchange) is the leading private equity firm in the Middle East and Africa. Citadel Capital focuses on building regional platforms in select industries through acquisitions, turnarounds, and greenfields executed via Opportunity-Specific Funds. The firm’s 19 OSFs now control Platform Companies with investments worth more than US$ 8.3 billion in 14 countries spanning 15 industries, including mining, cement, transportation, food and energy. Since 2004, Citadel Capital has generated more than US$ 2.5 billion in cash returns to its co-investors and shareholders (on investments of US$ 650 million), more than any other private equity firm in the region. Citadel Capital is the largest private equity firm in Africa by PE assets under management (2005-2010, as ranked by Private Equity International). For more information, please visit www.citadelcapital.com.
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