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Materials & Equipment News

Big investor Nassef Sawiris cuts LafargeHolcim stake

By: Reuters     10th January 2019 One of LafargeHolcim's biggest shareholders, Nassef Sawiris, has reduced his stake in the world's biggest cement maker, the company said on Wednesday, confirming a report by Swiss newspaper Handelszeitung. The Egyptian tycoon sold nearly 1.6-million shares in the Swiss company in December, when... 

Sika CEO says buying Parex means a pause on large acquisitions

By: Reuters     8th January 2019 Sika will pause on making further large scale acquisitions after the Swiss construction chemicals company's largest-ever deal to buy France's Parex worth 2.5 billion Swiss francs ($2.55 billion) on Tuesday. Sika has been linked with the construction chemicals business of BASF, which could be... 

Becsa to acquire IP-rich Matriarch Equipment

By: Marleny Arnoldi     8th January 2019 JSE-listed heavy equipment manufacturer Bell Equipment Company South Africa (Becsa), a subsidiary of Bell Equipment, will acquire Matriarch Equipment for an initial consideration of R3.8-million. The consideration will also include a further consideration of up to R15-million based on the... 

Enforcing local procurement rules would help offset weak demand  

By: Terence Creamer     14th December 2018 Steel and Engineering Industries Federation of Southern Africa (Seifsa) wants government to take decisive action in 2019 to ensure that departments and State-owned companies (SoCs) honour their obligations to purchase designated steel products from domestic manufacturers. The organisation is also... 

Enforcing local procurement rules would help offset weak demand
Seifsa CEO Kaizer Nyatsumba reflects back on 2018 and offer insight into prospects for the metals and engineering sector n 2019. Camera Work & Editing: Nicholas Boyd

Level of activity in construction sector recovers by 9% since Q1 – index

By: Marleny Arnoldi     5th December 2018 JSE-listed construction materials supplier Afrimat’s latest Afrimat Construction Index (ACI) rose by 4% in the third quarter, compared with the second quarter. This follows a gain of 7% between April and June.  

Level of activity in construction sector recovers by 9% since Q1 – index

Oman's Raysut Cement eyes acquiring Kenya's ARM Cement – statement

By: Reuters     4th December 2018 Oman's Raysut Cement said on Tuesday it plans to acquire Kenya's ARM Cement, which went into administration in August, as part of its expansion plans. Raysut has expressed its interest to the administrators to acquire the company, it said in a statement. 

Canada's construction steel buyers face tariff 'roulette'

By: Reuters     4th December 2018 Canadian steel buyers are racing to get construction steel into the country to claim first-come, first-serve exemptions from tariffs that were meant to stabilize the country's market in the wake of US President Donald Trump's metals tariffs. With steel prices already high, the companies that... 

ELB awarded design, supply contract for Illovo sugar system in Malawi

By: Marleny Arnoldi     3rd December 2018 ELB Engineering Services has been awarded the design and supply contract for the sugar supply system for Illovo Sugar Malawi’s Dwangwa packing facility, in Malawi. ELB will provide Illovo with a new sugar supply system that complies with the sugar producer’s hygiene requirements, while reducing... 

LafargeHolcim sees slower 2019 sales growth but higher profitability

By: Reuters     28th November 2018 LafargeHolcim expects slower sales growth but higher profitability during 2019, the world's largest cement maker said on Wednesday, adding that it is counting on "solid market demand" for its building materials to continue. The French-Swiss company expects full-year sales growth of 3% to 5% next... 

Omnia sees R695m nitrophosphate investment as fertiliser ‘game changer’ 

By: Terence Creamer     27th November 2018 Diversified chemicals group Omnia says its innovative nitrophosphate plant under construction in Sasolburg will materially improve the company’s overall competitiveness in the production of fertilisers, despite an upward revision to the project’s capital cost. Omnia reported on Tuesday that the... 

Omnia sees R695m nitrophosphate investment as fertiliser ‘game changer’
Omnia's nitrophosphate plant under construction

PPC posts solid interim results on the back of growth outside South Africa

By: Simone Liedtke     23rd November 2018 Cement producer PPC’s diversified portfolio has enabled the company to offset a weaker performance in South Africa performance with robust growth in the rest of Africa during the six months ended September 30, CEO Johan Claassen said on Friday. Reporting on the company’s financial results for the... 

PPC posts solid interim results on the back of growth outside South Africa
PPC CEO Johan Claassen

Firm’s design breathes new life into industry

By: Simone Liedtke     23rd November 2018 Multidisciplinary consulting engineering firm Arup was commended for its finalist entry of the V&A Grain Silo Complex façade in the architectural category at the 2018 South African Steel Awards, held last month. The R500-million V&A Grain Silo project, once an agricultural silo for grain storage... 

Firm’s design breathes  new life into industry
CROWN JEWEL The V&A Grain Silo Complex project was once an agricultural silo for grain storage, and is now features prominently in the silo district development

UCT growing bricks of any shape from urine

By: Schalk Burger     23rd November 2018 The University of Cape Town (UCT) Civil Engineering Department has developed a process to grow bricks that can be any shape using sand, bacteria and human urine. The bricks are made of calcium carbonate (CaCO3) – the same substance as limestone, coral reefs, egg- and seashells – and sand cemented... 

UCT growing bricks of any shape from urine
GROWING BRICKS Sand, bacteria, fertiliser and urine produce calcium carbonate bricks in any shape

Early days for stainless steel in cladding, construction industry

By: Simone Liedtke     23rd November 2018 The South African stainless steel in construction and cladding market is in an early developmental stage, despite many architectural projects having been completed over the past few decades, says South African Stainless Steel Development Association (Sassda) Western Cape regional manager Michel... 

Early days for stainless steel in cladding, construction industry
INTO FOCUS Stainless steel in cladding construction brings the advantages into focus

Trade wars costly to long-term construction projects

By: Simone Liedtke     23rd November 2018 Owing to the global trade war in steel prices, local manufacturers, such as local steel fabricator Fabcon, are finding it difficult to quote for long-term construction projects. “The stockholding of any steel company is dramatically reduced, as companies are unwilling to hold stock for a longer... 

Trade wars costly  to long-term construction projects
ANDREW VAN GOOL Companies are unwilling to hold stock for a longer period of time

Steel construction, cladding industry demand to continue increasing

By: Simone Liedtke     23rd November 2018 The demand for steel in South Africa’s construction and cladding sector will continue to increase, owing to its myriad of applications and ease of installation, says steel gratings, stair treads, pressed floors and safety handrails manufacturer Vital Engineering technical director Glen Pringle.... 

Steel construction, cladding industry demand to continue increasing
DIVERSIFIED PRODUCT OFFERING Vital Engineering supplies various items, including stainless steel handrails, GRP products, galvanised steel gratings and stainless steel gratings

Stimulus plan, more efficient processing to promote steel construction growth

By: Simone Liedtke     23rd November 2018 With the new stimulus plan announced under President Cyril Ramaphosa’s leadership, South Africa’s economy is poised for an upturn, which will inevitably promote growth in the steel construction sector, says cutting consumables and capital equipment distributor First Cut MD Andrew Poole. “This... 

Stimulus plan, more efficient processing to promote steel construction growth
SOLUTIONS PROVIDER First Cut supplies processing solutions, which comprise its latest-generation fribelaser solutions that cut sheet steel

Signs of positive change in steel sector

By: Simone Liedtke     23rd November 2018 The drive to import certain quantities of steel has gained impetus during 2018, as a result of some doubts in the steel manufacturing industry about the ability of local mills to produce the required level of quality of certain products they require, steel processor and supplier Allied Steelrode... 

Signs of positive change in steel sector
WARNE RIPPON There has also more recently been a concerted effort made by the primary steel producer to improve its product quality

Industry associations offer innovative opportunities for precast manufacturers

By: Shannon de Ryhove     23rd November 2018 Leading construction materials company AfriSam, who has been producing quality construction materials for over 80 years, strongly believes that industry bodies, such as the Concrete Manufacturers Association (CMA), have the opportunity to build the knowledge base and positively contribute towards... 

CMA membership offers significant advantages

By: Shannon de Ryhove     23rd November 2018 As a leading supplier of innovative infrastructure products to the construction and mining industries in Southern Africa, the Infrastructure Specialist Group (ISG), which represents precast concrete product specialists Rocla and Technicrete, believes that Concrete Manufacturers Association (CMA)... 

Barloworld mulls adding another Cat business; cuts 1 000 auto jobs 

By: Irma Venter     19th November 2018 Barloworld is mulling the acquisition of another distribution deal with US equipment manufacturer Caterpillar, says Barloworld CEO Dominic Sewela. This follows the sale of the Iberia Equipment business in Spain for R2.5-billion. 

Barloworld mulls adding another Cat business; cuts 1 000 auto jobs
Dominic Sewela

Improved performance drives Sephaku’s H1 earnings higher

By: Simone Liedtke     13th November 2018 Construction materials company Sephaku Holdings (SepHold) achieved a 75.9% year-on-year increase in basic earnings a share to 12.83c for the six months ended September 30, as a result of a significantly improved performance during the period. Headline earnings a share increased by 77.3%... 

Dangote is said to express interest in Kenyan cement firm ARM

By: Bloomberg     8th November 2018 Dangote Cement, Africa’s biggest producer of the building material, expressed an interest in acquiring Kenyan rival ARM Cement, according to three people familiar with the matter. ARM has been exploring a sale since at least October 2017. The company, part-owned by CDC Group, was placed in... 

Allied Steelrode launches second stretcher leveller to meet growing demand 

By: Simone Liedtke     8th November 2018 As a result of increasing demand for stretched and flattened steel, local steel supplier and processing company Allied Steelrode on Thursday launched a second stretcher leveller at its Midvaal-based facility for the production of Allied Steelrode Stretcher Material (ASSM). Having the stresses of... 

Allied Steelrode launches second stretcher leveller to meet growing demand
Allied Steelrode executive director Warne Rippon and group CE Arun Chadha speak to Engineering News Online about the company’s most recent purchase, a second stretcher leveler, as well as some of the company’s corporate social investments in the Midvaal area. Video & Editing: Nicholas Boyd

Master Drilling diversifies, expands through new JV in Italy  

By: Marleny Arnoldi     5th November 2018 JSE-listed Master Drilling has entered into a joint venture (JV) with Italian construction company Ghella, to establish a new Italy-based company called TunnelPro. TunnelPro will pursue tunnel boring projects in the smaller scope civil construction and broader mining industries, while also... 

Lightweight window cleaner developed for industry

By: Halima Frost     2nd November 2018 Cleaning equipment manufacturer and supplier Kärcher Industrial’s Window Vac Professional 10 (WVP 10 Adv) is now available to the South African market following the good reception received by participating contract cleaners, retailers and prospective clients in its test samples. Having made the... 

Lightweight window cleaner developed for industry
BETTER SQUEEGEE The handheld steam and vacuum window washer is available from Kärcher

Bitumen supplier concerned about slowdown in road construction

By: Irma Venter     2nd November 2018 The rapidly increasing bitumen price is less of a concern to bitumen suppliers than the recent slowdown in South African road construction, says Colas South Africa commercial, communication and marketing manager Herman Groenewald. Bitumen prices have increased by more than R2 000 a ton since... 

Afrimat prospers in H1, despite tough economic environment

By: Simone Liedtke     1st November 2018 Openpit mining company Afrimat on Thursday posted a 4.3% year-on-year improvement in operating profit to R202.7-million for the six months ended August 31, while revenue increased by 28.6% year-on-year to R1.5-billion. These positive results, CEO Andries van Heerden said at a media breakfast,... 

AMSA reports rise in Q3 sales and output

By: Terence Creamer     1st November 2018 Steel producer ArcelorMittal South Africa (AMSA) has reported increased production and sales for the quarter ended September 30, 2018. The JSE-listed company told shareholders on Thursday that liquid steel production increased by 4.8% to 59 000 t, mainly as a result of higher output from its... 

AMSA reports rise in Q3 sales and output

Raubex rightsizes road rehab division as lower Sanral work volumes bite 

By: Marleny Arnoldi     29th October 2018 JSE-listed Raubex Group continued to experience challenging conditions in the South African construction industry in the six months ended August 31, particularly in the road construction sector, reporting a 57.4% decline in operating profit to R157-million, compared with the R370-million profit... 

LafargeHolcim cuts full-year earnings forecast as costs bite

By: Reuters     26th October 2018 LafargeHolcim increased its sales outlook for 2018 but reduced its profit expectations as the world's largest cement maker reported better-than-expected earnings during its third quarter. The Swiss company said on Friday it now expected annual sales to grow in the 4% to 6% range, up from its... 

Company offers consultation on stainless steel grade use

By: Thabi Madiba     26th October 2018 As part of its anchor installer training service, construction industry service and technology provider Hilti South Africa offers consulting on the implications of using different grades of stainless steel as fasteners for anchoring purposes in the construction industry. “We all know stainless... 

Company offers consultation on stainless steel grade use
ON IT Hilti SA practitioner prepares for anchor installer training

South Africa welcomes product exclusion for some steel, aluminium products from Section 232 duties

By: Simone Liedtke     24th October 2018 Following an announcement that the US Department of Commerce has granted product exemptions for certain aluminium and steel products, Trade and Industry Minister Dr Rob Davies on Wednesday welcomed the positive developments as a step towards normalising trade relations between South Africa and... 

Reduce and reuse raw materials to slash waste and emissions, UN and think-tanks urge

By: Reuters     23rd October 2018 The rapid consumption of raw materials must be curbed to cut waste and carbon emissions, the United Nations and global think-tanks have urged, with resource consumption set to almost double by 2060, especially in developing economies. In the twentieth century, the world mined 34 times more... 

Kenya's ARM Cement's administrator proposes to keep company running

By: Reuters     22nd October 2018 The administrator of Kenya's debt-laden ARM Cement will ask its creditors for support keeping the company afloat by selling some of its assets to cut debt, as well as a plan to engage with financiers for working capital. George Weru, a co-administrator for the cement firm, told Reuters the... 

Sanral’s strategy, transformation policy ready for Cabinet approval 

By: Irma Venter     22nd October 2018 The South African National Roads Agency Limited’s (Sanral’s) Horizon 2030 strategy is “ready to go to Cabinet”, in a process that will be managed by the Department of Transport (DoT), says Sanral transformation manager Ismail Essa. He says the Minister of Transport, Dr Blade Nzimande, as well as... 

Sanral’s strategy, transformation policy ready for Cabinet approval
RULES OF THE RING Heavyweight contractors are not to box in the lightweight category, warns Sanral

Sanral, Wirtgen SA sign MoU to collaborate on construction development goals

By: Marleny Arnoldi     19th October 2018 Road construction equipment supplier Wirtgen Group South Africa (Wirtgen SA) and the South African National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral) on Friday signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU), which Wirtgen SA MD Heinrich Schulenburg said would cement the relationship between the entities and give... 

Sanral, Wirtgen SA sign MoU to collaborate on construction development goals
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