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Published on : Mar 03, 2015

East African cement manufacturer Portland Cement has reported that it has swayed in a first-half yearly loss after one of its maintenance units of the packing and clinker units had shutdown, but the Kenyan company has said that it hopes to recover its market condition after the units undergo repairs.

Portland Cement reported pretax losses of nearly US$1.36 million (124 million shillings) for the six months till the end of December 2014, compared to profits of nearly 171 million shillings during the same duration in the year 2013.

The Kenyan company, which also has operations in Uganda, stated that it is hopeful that it will be able to regain its market share in the global cement industry after it undergoes a proper plant refurbishment in quarter two of this financial year.

The company said in a statement that despite of the highly competitive nature of the global cement industry, the company has plenty of growth opportunities for meeting the rising regional and local demand for cement.

Cement makers from the eastern parts of Africa hope to gain business from a huge number of infrastructure projects being undertaken in many fast growing regional markets.

Portland Cement has reported that its overall revenues knocked down 9.6% and fell to 4.1 billion shillings, while the charges of sales increased by 8 percent to reach to 3.5 billion shilling.

The company’s earnings per share also declined to -0.75 shillings from 2.03 shillings in 2013’s first half. The company has stated that a part of plant refurbishment was successfully completed in the second quarter of this fiscal year and a new product line is being launched by the company that consist precast products expected to be in the market in the second half of this year. Another project of installation of a new packing line is also in progress and should be completed by the second half of this year, states Portland Cement’s Secretary Sheila Kahuki.