BRICK manufacturer, Willdale Limited,says sales volumes in the five months to February 2017 were 23 percent ahead of budget, largely driven by individual housing development projects.
Chief executive officer, Nyasha Matonda, told FinX that the company’s US$2 million investment in a transport logistics business has also abetted market demand for the bricks. Currently, there are only six trucks which Matonda said have been effective in servicing the market.
During the period under review, costs went down on prior year largely driven by various cost initiatives and plant efficiencies.
Meanwhile, Matonda said production was affected by the rains which came early and delayed the recommencement of operations. Works usually begin in February.
He however said the company had enough carry over stock to cover the market and meet demand during that period. Matonda said production in the current year is targeted at between 80 and 100 million bricks but will mainly be guided by market signals.
“We have the capacity to match any demand. We anticipate the market to grow due to several housing projects that are being financed by the National Building Society (NBS) through mortgage lending,” he said.
He said government has also lined up several housing projects as it moves to reduce the housing backlog currently estimated at 1,2 million.
The brick manufacturer saw turnover for the full-year to March 31 2016 at 20 percent below prior year at US$3,6 million due to an 18 percent decline in volumes and lower prices.
There had been a general decline in construction projects as a result of the challenging economic environment and this had a knock on effect on the group’s performance.