The Indian cement companies spend around 18 per cent of their operating income on logistics, both inbound and outbound. Top 30 cement companies spent more than Rs 10,000 crore to carry cement to the consumer in 2009-10 while the industry has been continuously making efforts to reduce logistic costs. The recent downtrend in cement business, which saw profit margins shrink to 20-25 per cent from 35-40 per cent, made cement makers refocus on logistics management. And this proved beneficial to many manufacturers.
Using more railway routes than roads, shrinking lead distance and opting for sea-routes wherever possible were some of the measures the industry explored. Currently, for every 50-kg bag of cement, the logistics cost comes to around Rs 18-25 by road and Rs 12-15 by railway, depending on the distance. The average cost of carrying cement by railways has also gone up over the years. From Rs 95 per tonne km in 008-09, the cost has almost touched Rs 100 in 2010-11. Road freights are determined by multiple factors, including the principle component, diesel. Thanks for the administered prices of this fuel, road transportation is a viable option up to a lead of 300 km. Above that, railway is economical. Sea route is limited largely on the western coast, where the draft is enough for bulk transportation. Worldwide, 70 per cent of the cement movement is by sea compared to just 1-2 per cent in India.
The cement industry believes that reducing logistic costs in isolation is not achievable, without considering the serviceability of the system. Large cement makers are focusing on an appropriate mix of the two. Efficiency and technology can make a large difference to cement logistics. Mechanisation (in road transportation) is the key that can make a huge difference to cement logistics. But this needs a collaborative effort and no company can solely take this forward.
Sustainable solutions by Ambuja Cement, ACC
Ambuja Cement and ACC the cement and building material companies of the diversified Adani Group announced solutions to an array of customer concerns while keeping environment sustainability at its core. Examples of this are the concrete mix proportioning solution; designed to optimise the proportions of aggregates, sand and water in concrete mixes considering their unique properties. This helps the company optimise the resources thereby minimising wastage. The company also developed an in-house modular curing solution, also known as zero-water curing. This technique helps concrete slab curing without excessive use of water. This has helped save about 39 million litres of water across multiple sites.
Fornnax adds 430HP secondary shredder to it’s R-series line-up
Fornnax technologies showcased the R4000-HD tyre shredder at the IFAT expo 2023, where the company got a platform to interact with industry professionals from domestic as well as overseas markets and demonstrate the technological prowess of their machine. The R4000-HD is a powerful machine designed to make secondary shredding and steel separation more efficient and profitable.
The machine saves electricity and man-power and due to its design features it is built to make maintenance procedures easier and also lower the wear and tear to the equipment, thus lowering operating cost. It can process various materials from types, cables, e-waste and aluminium scrap. It is built to last 20-25years. With all its features and sturdy built, it is one of the most powerful secondary shredding machines in the industry.
Udaipur Cement Works Limited doubles its clinker capacity
A subsidiary of the well known JK Lakshmi Cement Ltd., Udaipur Cement Works Ltd. (UCWL) recently announced the expansion of its clinker facility taking its current capacity from 1.5MTPA to 3 MTPA at Udaipur. The company, by the end of financial year 2023-24, plans to exceed twice the current capacity from 2.2 MTPA to 4.7 MTPA. The capacity expansion has been funded through a mix of equity and debt; the company recently successfully completed its rights issue of INR 450 crores.
They have two brands under their portfolio ‘Platinum Heavy Duty Cement’ and ‘Platinum Supremo Cement’.
Also known for their commitment to renewable energy and environment sustainability, they have the first and only of it’s kind floating solar power plant of 1MWp at it’s mines, fulfilling 50% of their electricity needs.