Jun. 30, 2015

Enrico Alicandri


Enrico Alicandri

Area Manager, CMC África Austral

TBY talks to Enrico Alicandri, Area Manager of CMC África Austral, on the company's broader strategy in the region, major projects in Mozambique, and its construction materials business.


Enrico Alicandri is Italian and studied Civil Engineering at Politecnico di Milano. He has been Area Manager of CMC África Austral since April 2014.

How would you assess the growth of CMC África Austral in Mozambique since your establishment?

We started out in the late 1970s but have been here permanently since 1982. Since then, we have changed considerably, as indeed has Mozambique. We are adapting our company to the new Mozambique.

CMC África Austral is also present in South Africa, Malawi, and Angola. What is the significance of Mozambique for the overall company strategy?

As the global crisis particularly impacted Europe, especially Italy, the company's focus has shifted to overseas projects. Mozambique remains a key area for two reasons. One is historical, as CMC has been operating here for more than 30 years. The second reason we remain in Mozambique is that liquid natural gas (LNG) is coming online and the country is experiencing economic development. We are operating in South Africa and have projects in Zambia, Malawi, Lesotho, and Angola. We are about to start in Kenya as well and exploring the market in Swaziland. Yet Mozambique is the key area for CMC and remains highly important.

What are the main projects of CMC África Austral in Mozambique right now?

We have projects with an average value of $60 million and we expect to grow consistently by 50% over the next two or three years. Over the next three years, a lot of LNG-related processes are set to open up. Presently, the composition of our turnover is roughly as follows: 50% infrastructure, 30% quarries and batching plants, and 20% civil works, or buildings and real estate. For obvious reasons, most of the potential growth the company is going to experience will be in infrastructure. Amongst our main projects, we can mention the two roads, Montepuez-Ruaça and Lichinga-Litunde. Still, in the public sector, we will be working in Massingir for the rehabilitation of the dam's bottom outlet, and in Pemba we are building a stadium. It will not perhaps be comparable to the Bernabeu or the San Siro ones, but it will be a good sports center, and a good way to establish our presence in Pemba. It is our intention to open an office in Pemba, to allow us to closely follow the tenders that will be coming out for the different projects in Pemba and Palma. In Matola we are building the new Coca-Cola factory and in Namialo the production of the sleepers for Vale is ongoing.

What is the significance of the commercialization of construction materials that CMC África Austral in Mozambique?

Around 30% of our business is construction material, meaning aggregates, ready-to-mix concrete and railway sleepers. Again, Palma and Pemba would be the main areas of interest for CMCAA together with other areas such as Nacala, Tete, Maputo, and Quelimane.

In terms of industrial construction which companies are you working with besides Coca-Cola?

Historically, we have mostly worked with public sector clients in Mozambique as most of our work was related to infrastructure. Yet today, with the LNG plants, Palma, the Pemba port, Vale, and Coca-Cola much of our future work will most likely be done for private clients.

What role does CMC África Austral play in socioeconomic development?

We have witnessed Mozambique grow and develop over the past 30 years. We also experienced the war here, and we have worked on infrastructure projects to help the country rebuild and grow. Over the past 20 years, we have employed on average between 2,500 and 4,000 Mozambicans. Today the figure is at almost 3,000 and is set to rise. I would say that this best exemplifies the modest social contribution we have made in Mozambique.

What are your key priorities in Mozambique for the next five years?

We want to register growth of 50% over the next three years and to include private projects in our portfolio. Underpinning this will be our focus on safety, and we are introducing safety systems to Mozambique that we have already deployed in other countries, such as South Africa. We are determined to raise safety standards in Mozambique to international standards.