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CDC backs ARM Cement with $140mln

In a second investment in as many weeks, CDC, the UK development finance institution is investing $140 million in ARM Cement, a producer of cement, lime and fertilizer with operations in Kenya, Tanzania and Rwanda. As a result of the investment, Ketso Gordhan, CDC’s Head of Africa, will join ARM’s board.

The capital will be used to expand the company’s production capacity to boost the supply of cement in East Africa and promote infrastructure development in its countries of operation as well as support ARM’s potential expansion to other, neighboring countries. In the short term, CDC will support the company’s plans to expand cement production in Mwingi in central Kenya, helping to reduce the cost of cement to customers located away from the country’s coastal producers.

“CDC’s investment in ARM Cement can provide the building blocks for the growth of infrastructure and housing in East Africa,” commented Mark Pay, CDC’s Managing Director for Equity investments. “This investment will strengthen a company making a difference to the local economy, bringing jobs and lower cost raw materials to a region traditionally dependent on imports.”

ARM, (formerly Athi River Mining), was founded in 1974 and has grown to become East Africa’s second largest cement producer, with a market share of approximately 15%.

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