ETHIOPIA – Abbahawa Trading Plc, a coffee exporter, is getting into the bottled water industry, establishing Mogle Bottled Water Manufacturing with capital of 200 million Br.

Mogle will pack water, which it has called “One”, with bottles that it will manufacture itself, according to Enyew Zeleke, CEO of the new company. “One” launched its product on Saturday September 5, 2015 at Sheraton Addis, with distribution expected to begin at the end of September.

The company was established a year ago in Sebeta town, 25Km southwest of Addis Abeba, where it has leased a 13,000sqm plot of land from the Oromia Regional State; the plant rest on 9,322sqm.

Of the total investment, 150 million Br was used for the construction of the factory, acquisition of machinery and delivery trucks. The money will also be used for working capital.

The rest of the money was used to buy preforms which will be used for the making of the bottles, says Enyew. The plant will have machinery that will produce 0.62lt of water, with a manufacturing capacity of 14,000 bottles an hour.

The company can now pack 14,000 bottles of water an hour, for daily production of 280,000lt. But it is already working on an expansion, which could see it increasing its production capacity by 10,000 bottles an hour.

This expansion could take 60 million Br to 70 million Br, Enyew speculated, although the figure may vary as the study is concluded.

The company will draw underground water from one 186m deep borehole at Mogle Mountain, which could give 15lt of water per second.

“We have entered in to the sector after realisng that there is a gap in demand and supply of bottled mineral water,” said Enyew Zeleke, CEO of Abbahawa.

The company hired a local consulting firm, NH Engineering, for 100,000 Br to conduct a feasibility study. According to the study, there is a 40pc gap in the supply of bottled water in the local market.

The licence was issued to it after its study was approved by the Oromia Water & Energy Bureau.

The bottled water will come in different sizes: 0.4lt, 0.6lt, one litre, 1.5lt and two litres, as well as 20lt. The company is eyeing distribution in Addis Abeba and other regional towns.

One is now on the waiting list at the Ethiopian Conformity Assessment Enterprise (ECAE) for quality testing and certification; it will also undergo inspection by the Food, Medicine & Health Care Administration & Control Authority in October 2015.

This water is among one of the 57 products that are listed under those that have to meet compulsory standards, with the bottlers having to pass through an inspection by ECAE. So far 32 have been certified, according to an official at the ECAE.

The company has ordered a transformer from the Metal & Engineering Corporation (MetEC), which is taking time, says Enyem. In the mean time it is using fuel-powered generators.

The company is expected to hire 160 people as permanent workers.

According to data from Ministry of Industry (MoI), there are around 40 brands of bottled water.

“We are updating our data on the exact number of the brands, which we expect it will be doubled, said Aklilu Kefyalew,” director of beverage processing industries at MoI.

September 9, 2015;