Speaking during the Annual General Meeting held today at the Panafric Hotel Nairobi, Group CEO Mr. Rakesh Rao said “We have aggressive plans to entrench our regional presence in East Africa. We will start with putting up satellite factories in Arusha, and Dar es Salaam.”
With growth of the construction sector averaging 15 per cent over the last six years, Crown Paints has positioned itself to reap from the increased demand in the region for its products especially in the premium category.
The company has also opened showrooms in Mombasa, 2 in Nairobi and Nakuru respectively, bringing the total to four, with a promise to open three more in, Eldoret and Nairobi to meet increased market demand owing to the current property boom in the economy.
The company is also putting up a Kshs. 300 million factory in Kisumu in its strategic expansion plan.
The company Chairman, Mhamud Charania, reiterated that the company was firmly on track to boost sales in the region using a unique model of setting up mini-plants that feed demand for specific regions.
“We plan to increase export in Rwanda and Somalia to further improve sales”. He added. This as the company registered an increase in combined volume sales of South Sudan, Rwanda, Burundi and Tanzania in the year 2013.
Crown Paints Kenya Ltd through strategic partnership recently announced the availability of a new product in its growing product portfolio. The local company will now distribute Fevicol adhesives in the local market in collaboration with Pidilite Industries, Asia’s leading adhesive, sealants and construction Chemicals Company.
In its financial year, the company recorded an increase in profit by 49 percent for the year ending 31st December 2013 compared to last year (2012). The paint maker recorded Kshs 333.4million profit before tax an increase from Sh224million last year.
Crown Paints CEO Rakesh Rao further attributed the impressive results for the financial year to aggressive sales, good government policies and improved efficiencies that saw the turnover improve significantly from Kshs 213,843 million to Kshs 133,543 million during the same period.
Rao said the paint industry had become very competitive as evidenced by increased pressure on margins. “The market is very competitive from a price perspective. However, our focus on introducing new, innovative products into the market is paying off. We are optimistic about the future,” he said.
The directors have recommended a dividend of Kshs 1.75 dividend per share for the year ended 31 December 2013.