AfriSam is so much more than merely a producer of cement, concrete and aggregate products and related services.
Richard Tomes, AfriSam’s national sales and marketing executive, says that AfriSam is not about what its concrete makes but all about what its concrete makes possible.
“As the leading supplier of cement and concrete solutions AfriSam has been building solid foundations throughout southern Africa for more than 80 years. We are the brand that helps create spaces that foster life, relationships, stories and growth. At AfriSam we are about creating concrete possibilities,” Tomes says.
Making a difference extends far beyond AfriSam’s products and what these products can create. The ethos of creating concrete possibilities is deeply entrenched in the company’s philosophy and values, and this is underpinned by many of AfriSam’s business practices which clearly demonstrate its commitment to a lasting legacy.
Extremely proud of its African heritage AfriSam established its first cement plant in 1934 in Roodepoort, Gauteng. The company has since grown into a formidable construction materials group with operations in four African countries.
Creating concrete possibilities for all communities, AfriSam took the opportunity to play a role in the construction of the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa (MOCAA) in Cape Town and the company sponsored concrete for the construction of the museum.
Once completed the Zeitz MOCAA will be a cultural institution that will focus on collecting, preserving, researching and exhibiting cutting-edge contemporary art from Africa and its diaspora. The museum’s name honours the renowned Zeitz Collection which will form the museum’s founding collection.
Considered by many to be the leading collection of contemporary art from Africa and its diaspora, Jochen Zeitz will commit his collection in perpetuity, underwrite the running costs of the museum and provide a substantial acquisition budget to allow the museum to acquire new important artworks over time to remain on the edge of contemporary cultural production.
“As a company with our roots firmly anchored in African soil we’re extremely proud of our association with the Zeitz MOCAA and the role we can play, through our concrete sponsorship, in conserving our African heritage for future generations,” concludes Tomes.
ECO READYMIX BRINGS “GREEN” TO CONCRETE
In an industry first AfriSam released an environmentally responsible concrete range, Eco Readymix, that blends high-performance cement with carbon-neutral mineral components to achieve excellent cementitious properties.
The carbon footprint of this concrete has been reduced by between 46% and 51% compared to typical industry concrete, depending on the compressive strength. The Eco Readymix brands – Starmix, Foundation Mix and Retainer Mix – are developed to suit the particular construction application.
As part of its efforts to conserve the environment AfriSam has perfected the art of producing composite cements using additives as partial replacement for cement. Not only does this practice of recycling by-products from other industries minimise harm to the environment but these additives enhance the performance of cement and offer advantages over ordinary Portland cement.
The additives include limestone, fly ash – a by-product of coal-fired power stations – and ground granulated blast furnace slag from the steel industry. These products behave like pure cements in the presence of cement or lime.
While pure Portland cement has served industry well for over a century it has now been superceded by composite cements. Despite their low carbon footprint the performance of the Eco Readymix concretes is far superior to concrete made from pure cements. Furthermore, AfriSam is able to produce ultra-high performance Eco Readymix concretes with compressive strengths of above 70 MPa.”
AfriSam’s years of research and development in cement products – and in particular its C-Tech technology – give the company’s products a number of distinct advantages over pure cements. These include improved workability, reduced heat of hydration, reduced susceptibility to chemical attack and increased erosion resistance. They are also less permeable, so are more corrosion-resistant, and they continue to gain strength over time.