Kenyan cement firm offers early retirement

Saturday May 30 2020

The East Africa Portland Cement Company (EAPCC)

The East Africa Portland Cement Company (EAPCC) stand during an expo. In the year to June 2019, the company registered sales of $37.9 million from $48.9 million the year before, with revenues dropping by 46.2 per cent to $25.8 million from $48 million in 2018. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

NJIRAINI MUCHIRA
By NJIRAINI MUCHIRA
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To avert total collapse, the East African Portland Cement Company (EAPCC) is offering voluntary early retirement for its 800 employees.

Less than year after a plan backfired to sack its employees by declaring all positions redundant, the company has asked staff to apply for voluntary early retirement.

EAPCC acting managing director Stephen Nthei said the programme is a one-time event open to all employees that is designed to achieve sustainable operational costs at a time when the company is struggling to remain afloat amidst mounting losses and declining cement sales.

“The industry has witnessed a significant decline in productivity, resulting in depressed revenues and manpower utilisation leading to unprecedented job losses,” said Mr Nthei in a statement.

He added that implementation of the early retirement programme will support the company’s initiative to develop a sustainable business model.

The latest move by EAPCC to get rid of its workforce comes after the company withdrew a notice declaring all positions redundant in August last year.

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The company says the cost of the workforce compared with productivity, is high, and wants to reduce the number to less than 600.

EAPCC profits have dropped due to dwindling sales occasioned by competition in the industry, rising operational costs and plummeting income.

The company, which posted a $31.4 million loss for the year ending June 30, 2019, is technically insolvent, with its current liabilities surpassing current assets by $94.3 million, down from $56.3 million last year.

In the year to June 2019, the company registered sales of $37.9 million from $48.9 million the year before, with revenues dropping by 46.2 per cent to $25.8 million from $48 million in 2018.

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