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BASF to Launch Production Plant in Nigeria for concrete admixtures and cement additives

By Samuel Okocha

Friday, 7 August 2015

German chemical company BASF will soon launch its first Nigerian production plant for concrete admixtures and cement additives.

“Our plant will be commercially operational in August 2015,” said Nair Narayanan, Country Manager at BASF Construction Chemicals, Nigeria, to Construct Africa in an email.

The plant, Mr. Narayan explained, will help contractors and construction companies produce better work as the company manufactures chemicals which not only make a concrete mix easier to use but also make it stronger and more durable.

Since it resumed operations in Nigeria in 2012, the chemical company has been supplying the Nigerian market with concrete admixtures using imported products from different regions. But the new plant will substitute the imports and position the company to better fulfill the needs of the local market, according to Andrew Bailey, Managing Director at BASF West Africa.

“The benefit of a local plant is that each construction site will have a different set of specifications.  For contractors to produce to those specifications, they will need a certain type of concrete which may or may not be available. But concrete admixture makes it possible to reach those specifications. So each project may require a slightly different formulation,” explained Bailey.

“If you’re importing material in container loads, you have very limited scope to change to a different formulation. But a local blending operation gives you that opportunity to change the formulation, depending on the project. That we believe will give us a competitive advantage in the market place,” he added.

According to Africa Development Bank’s Programme for Infrastructure Development in Africa (PIDA), closing the African infrastructure gap is expected to cost $360 billion between 2011 and 2040 with significant investment required by 2020.

Seeing the opportunity to serve Nigeria’s construction market and increase its presence in the growing African markets, the company, in July 2012, opened a new regional office in Lagos to serve customers in Nigeria and the West African market.

Construction chemicals forms part of the businesses in one of the operating divisions within BASF. The global company’s portfolio range from chemicals, plastics, performance products and crop protection products to oil and gas.

“We see Nigeria being a very good opportunity for our products,” said Bailey, “and the drivers are a young youthful population, a growing middle class, and a big infrastructure gap, which particularly affects construction.”


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