Limestone in concrete ‘only adds value to cement producers pockets’

08 April 2015

Concrete.TV interviewed Anton Weavind, founder of Mamba Cement who makes a case for going back to the old practice of producing pure cement concrete.

Currently in South Africa, the standards show a lot of variability in the capacity of the cement producers to change their product to a certain extent to their own benefit.

Weavind criticizes, for example, in the 42.5 or 52.5 instance, the cement producer is allowed to add up to 5% limestone. He believes this has a serious knock on effect to concrete producers.

The cement producer is able to sell his product at a margin of pure cement, even though the concrete producer has to add 5% more cement in the concrete mix to come to the same result. Weaving compares this to selling “coca-cola with water in it”.

Mamba Cement was founded in reaction to the cement shortages that affected South Africa in 2008/2009. Construction of the plant commenced in January 2015 and it will target the production of 1 million tons a year. Mamba’s main footprint aims to provide to the Pretoria/Gauteng, Rustenburg, Limpopo and Mpumalanga areas. The plant is currently 5 months ahead of schedule.

Weavind says 1 million bags of cement per month which will be distributed into the hardware industry. They will make about 70 000 tons of pure bulk cement a month which will be targeting the concrete industry, construction and the cement blending industry.

The majority shareholders of Mamba Cement are the Jidong Development Group from China, Wiphold and the debt was provided by Nedbank.

When asked about using local employment, Weavind stated that 70% of the work force will be South African, and that extensive training programmes are in place, with personnel receiving knowledge transfer from the Chinese.

www.Concrete.TV Camera and edit: Anna Sacco.  Text: Adrienne Taylor
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[Limestone in concrete ‘only adds value to cement producers pockets’]

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