KWAL breaks ground on new US$36.5m ultra-modern manufacturing facility, eyes bigger market share

KENYA – Kenyan manufacturer and distributor of alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages KWAL, has started construction of its new Ksh. 4 billion (US$36.5m) ultra-modern manufacturing facility at Tatu City Industrial Park Ruiru.

The beverage maker held a ground breaking ceremony which was attended by the Chief Administrative Secretary, Industrialization, Trade and Enterprise Development Lawrence Karanja, Kiambu County Governor Hon. James Nyoro, KWAL Board Chairperson Kuria Muchiru, and KWAL Managing Director Lina Githuka.

According to KWAL, establishment of the new facility will enable it to meet consumer demand for its portfolio of fast-growing brands and continue to localize production of its imported brands as it eyes to expand its market share in the Eastern Africa region.

“The ground-breaking at Tatu City Industrial park, marks the beginning of the journey towards our aspiration of being the preferred and most respected beverage company in Eastern Africa,” indicated KWAL on a social media post.

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The ultra-modern fermentation and manufacturing plant will feature a state-of-the-art cellars and modern laboratories which will ensure consistent quality of our products.

KWAL Managing Director, Lina Githuka added, “The new facility will host a state-of-the-art factory with enhanced capacity to produce aspirational brands to meet ever evolving consumer tastes; a world class customer distribution center as well as offices that will provide employees with a superb working environment.

“The KWAL Tatu City facility will be an eco-friendly space having leveraged on go-green construction and systems to promote recycling and re-use to enhance responsible production and consumption within the facility.”

The new investment will not only ensure value creation for the company but also build on Kenya’s Big 4 Agenda and Vision 2030’s economic pillar to boost local production, expand to the regional market, take advantage of global market niches and increase employment opportunities in the country.

“The ground-breaking at Tatu City Industrial park, marks the beginning of the journey towards our aspiration of being the preferred and most respected beverage company in Eastern Africa.”

KWAL

The investment marks the first new production facility opened by KWAL in more than two decades and is backed by its major share-holder Distell who has invested more than Ksh.1.2billion (US$10.9m) in the company since acquiring a stake in it.

Established in 1969, KWAL has over the years developed from the foundations of a state-owned enterprise to a private institution following the government’s decision in 2014 to offer 26% of its shareholding of KWAL to its long-partner Distell.

In 2017 Distell, acquired an additional 26.43% stake from Centum, effectively increasing its stake to 55.37% making it the major shareholder. The other shareholder is Industrial and Commercial Development Corporation (ICDC) with 43.77% shareholding.

The company which enjoys distribution rights of globally reputable brands including Viceroy, Amarula, Cellar Cask and Nederburg currently boasts of a well-established distribution system countrywide that has seen the firm significantly grow its footprint.

Kenya is an important market for Distell as in the half year period ended December 2020 it registered a 17% growth in revenue and 9.8% volume growth.

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