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CIMERWA Bounces Back With 24% Profit, 20% In Sales Volumes

4 Min Read

Rwanda’s sole cement manufacturer, CIMERWA, can now be considered a revived and solid business after registering 24% profit, year on year, the company’s executives said on Thursday morning.

CIMERWA CEO, Bheki Mthembu, told journalists that the manufacturer also saw 20% increase in sales volumes, thanks to aggressive government infrastructure projects in 2019 that drove the numbers high. “We are now a profitable business,” Mthembu said.

This good development comes on the back of a plant maintenance and upgrade in 2018, which saw the sole cement manufacturer in Rwanda optimizing its production capacity to over 80% in 2019 as compared to 65% the previous year.

CIMERWA’s plant located in Rusizi district in the Western Province currently produces 480,000 tonnes per annum as it looks to increase capacity to 90% by mid-2020 and further to 100% by mid-2021 reaching its full capacity of 600,000 tonnes per annum.

“I am pretty sure if you went to a doctor and told him/her that you needed to undergo hip and kidney replacement in combination with heart bypass surgery, he/she would advise you to rather do it organ by organ (not all at once) – otherwise you would run a big risk of not coming out of the theater alive, the same analogy applies to CIMERWA’s step by step optimisation approach,” the CEO said.As a highly capital-intensive business, CIMERWA’s upgrades needed to be systematically undertaken.

The major investment upgrades, which was commissioned in 2015, moving from a capacity of 100,000 tonnes per annum to today’s capacity of 480,000 tonnes per annum, are a commitment of meeting Rwanda’s macro infrastructure agenda, the firm said.

“We are now officially a profit-making business in 2019 compared to previous years,” Mthembu said, adding that, “The profits we made this year will ultimately contribute to the ongoing capacity scale up of our plant and giving back to the community.”

John Bugunya, CIMERWA’s CFO, highlighted key financial performance figures that showcase financial success this year.

The 20% sales volume increase year on year triggered a 24% revenue increase year on year with a Rwf 4.45 billion profit before tax.

John also expounded on the key factors behind this financial growth.“…most of our profits can be attributed to the government’s unwavering focus and investment in the development of the infrastructure sector,” Bugunya said.

“We have been involved in key national development projects this past year including the Kigali Arena, the Bugesera International Airport which is still under construction, the new Prime Minister’s office, the new Gasabo District headquarters and many more. With this being said I can not overlook the unflinching support of our stakeholders along this journey and the trust our customers put in the quality of our products.” Bugunya explained.CIMERWA plans to scale up to 90% production capacity by 2020 and 100% by mid-2021.

The firm intends to concentrate on ensuring a steady supply with plans to launch a wider “range” of products with the aim of meeting customer’s specific application, according to Mthembu.