by Emmanuel Joseph
A new $6 million state-of-the-art concrete plant is to become fully operational in Barbados by January, with the operators intent on taking over at least one third of the local market initially.
Investigations by Barbados TODAY this afternoon revealed that CEMIX, the new concrete division of Bess Mining Incorporated, at Black Bess, St. Peter, started “doing a few jobs” last Monday, while targeting the end of December for the completion of construction of its plant.
The plant is being built at Black Bess.
“Within the first two to three years, we would like to take over at least one third of the market… We would like to hold all,” Managing Director of Bess Mining Inc., Wayne Manning told this newspaper.
Manning said CEMIX already had six new trucks — a boom pump truck that can feed concrete upwards of three storeys and smaller line pump vehicles, mainly for smaller operations at the ground level.
“We started providing services on Monday to people we know. We haven’t got any jobs from the general public yet, more from builders. Most of our marketing has so far been with the new trucks (being on the road),” added Manning.
The managing director said the plant would be German-made and would be “very” computerised with the ability to blend any kind of concrete which the customer required.
“It will not be your average concrete plant. We will be talking to the customers about how to save on the concrete, which is the most costly aspect of the mix. We will also be dealing with various types of aggregate for the convenience of the customer,” he pointed out.
When completed, CEMIX would add 15 new employees to the current 20 working for the parent company.
“We have so far identified the drivers, but we still have a few positions to fill,” he revealed.
Manning disclosed that Bess Mining recently bought the quarrying operations of Black Bess Quarry Limited, but was not interested in a total take over of Black Bess operation.
“We will stick to what we know, concrete and aggregate. We are not interested in the construction industry,” he insisted.
He said his company was however, working with the construction business of Black Bess Quarry Limited.
Asked what would separate CEMIX from his competitors, Manning replied: “Quality!”
He argued that as a state-of-the-art operation, it would be in a better position to be more efficient, effective and flexible with the range of services it provided.
Last week, CEMIX started providing concrete to the multi million dollar H&B Hardware complex now under construction at Warrens, but officials of the main competitor, Ready Mix Limited, explained that that was a misunderstanding.
“They were not supposed to do that,” he added.
Observers noted that at least two deliveries had been made by CEMIX. Ready Mix, one of the companies of the C.O. Williams group, is the main supplier of concrete on the H&B Hardware project.