October 12, 2020 — Our inaugural list of Africa Cement Executives of the year has been released today.
The list honors Aliko Dangote with a lifetime recognition of his immense contribution to the development of manufacturing in general and cement industry in particular.
Aliko Dangote is the Founder and Chairman of Dangote Cement Plc. He is the founder of Dangote Industries Limited; over which he presides as President and Chairman of the Board. He founded the group in 1981 as a trading business with an initial focus on importation of bagged cement and other commodities such as rice, sugar, flour, salt and fish. Over time, the Group began to import bulk cement into the Apapa and Port Harcourt terminals, which it then bagged for distribution. Through the 1990s, the Group made a strategic decision to transition from a trading based business into a fully-fledged integrated manufacturing operation. This is where our ambitious plan to become Africa’s leading Cement producer began. Today, Dangote Cement is the leading cement producer in Africa.
Anas Sefrui is recognized as CEO of the year for his continuing stewardship of Ciments d’Afrique as the company he founded seeks out new markets in Africa. 2019/2020 has been a good year for Kenyan based cement investor Narendra Rameshchandra Raval popularly known as “Guru.” During this period this company, Devki Group has build and acquired additional capacity by snapping the Kenyan assets of Indian conglomerate, Sanghi Group and those of loss making ARM Group. This consolidation gives Devki the pole position as the largest producer of cement in East Africa by installed capacity. Our inaugural awards honor “Guru” as our cement entrepreneur for 2020.
The awards also recognize the pioneering work done by Dr. Ndidi Nnoli at Dangote Cement. Dr Ndidi Nnoli-Edozien served as the Group Chief Sustainability and Governance Officer from March 2017 till June 2020. Under her leadership, Dangote Cement developed its first GRI certified, globally benchmarked Sustainability Report in 2018, spanning 10 African countries, unveiled at the Nigerian Stock Exchange as the first fully compliant report in 2019.
Her mandate was to lead the effort to integrate Sustainability Thinking, Doing and Reporting across the Group, which she achieved by building a Sustainability Culture anchored in people (800 Sustainability Champions) and values (her SevenPillars Methodology). To fully implement and sustain the sustainability strategy, Dangote, Africa’s largest business conglomerate needed to engage all stakeholders in developing strategy, approach and implementation of the company’s sustainability programme.
We also shine the spotlight on Albert Sigei, the CEO leading the transformation of Rwanda’s integrated cement producer, CIMERWA, which was recently listed on the Rwanda Stock Exchange. Dangote Cement Cameroon‘s head, Bertrand Mbouck. Jose Maria Magrina who is providing exemplary leadership to Suez Cement, Egypt’s largest private cement producer. Rabah Guessoum in Algeria who is leading GICA’s efforts towards being an export oriented business while making milestones as the first African cement producer to manufacture certified oil well cement.
Andreas Bischofberger of Cimenterie de Lukala who works hard to keep the boat afloat despite the apparent challenges of doing business in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Legendary industrialist Prasad Motaparti, leading Diamond Cement expansion across Africa. Michel Puchercos another “Mr. Cement,” who has had a stellar career in executive leadership positions within LafargeHolcim now settling in the shoes of the now retired Joseph Makoju, to take care of Dangote’s group expansion and investments across Africa. We also recognize Sammy Mvoi Mlasheni and Segun Shoyoye of Savannah Cement and Lafarge Africa Plc respectively as Production Executives of the Year. The list is long, comprising of executives making a contribution to the progress of manufacturing in the highest levels of the cement industry.
In the midst of current headwinds, overcapacity and the slowdown brought about by the Covid-19 global pandemic, the cement industry in Africa is expected to experience staggered growth. There is still a vast number of construction projects in the pipeline, including housing, railway, roads, metro system, ports, water & energy projects, etc. and other foreign-funded projects are expected to keep demand for cement growing.
One of the significant changes observed recently is the increase in regional cement production capacity. Going forward, this trend will get more traction, and we expect more capacity additions in the coming years in the region. Consequently, on one side it will reduce reliance on imports, and on the other hand, it will underpin local demand due to falling production costs.
The Africa Cement Executives of the Year List shines a spotlight on industry leaders tasked with shepherding the sector into recovery post Covid-19. The list also takes into account leaders who have shown exemplary mettle towards achieving market-share & brand leadership, successful execution of expansion projects and investments in social investment and environmental stewardship. Not forgetting an executive’s standing in the eyes of industry peers.
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