Billionaire Raval to build a US$110m Lukenya iron sheets plant in Kenya

KENYA – Billionaire industrialist Narendra Raval, better known as Guru, is expanding his roofing-sheet manufacturing business at a reported cost of KSh11 billion (US$110m) at his Lukenya property.

According to Business Daily, Mr Raval, who chairs Devki Group of Companies, said that Citibank and Barclays would fund the new business besides internally generated funds.

“With this new mabati plant expansion, 700 more jobs will be created and that will add to our recently acquired KSh5 billion (US$50m) ARM Cement deal that came with an additional 1,100 employees.

The upcoming steelmaking factory in Kwale will employ 2,100 people upon completion within the next two years,” he said.

According to regulatory filings, Mr Raval is seeking approval for the planned factory, which the National Environment Management Authority has given the public 30 days to file submissions on the project.

Mr Raval has been on an expansion spree in the last two years with two new factories under construction in Njoro, Nakuru and Mariakani in Mombasa.

In 2015, the Devki Group raked in KSh65.8 billion (US$658m) in annual revenue with its owner described by Forbes magazine as among Africa’s tycoons with a net worth of KSh40 billion (US$400m).

Companies under the conglomerate include Devki Steel Mills, National Cement Company Uganda, Maisha Mabati Mills and Northwood Aviation.

Mr Raval is also erecting a second 1.8 million metric tonnes per annum clinker line in Kajiado where construction started this year and is to be commissioned by 2020.

He is setting up another 0.75 million metric tonnes cement plant in Kilifi while the 0.88 million metric tonnes in Athi River is still underway set to be commissioned in mid-2020.

He recently acquired Athi River Mining (ARM) Cement, a struggling Nairobi-based cement company, for US$50 million. The transaction positioned his company as the leading cement manufacturer in the region.

Narendra Raval was once on the Forbes list of Africa’s Richest. He has investments in steel, aluminum and cement. 

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