Dashen Brewery S.C. is inaugurating its much larger second plant in Debre Birhan town, more than tripling the company’s beer products in a bid to be more competitive in central and southern Ethiopia markets.
Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn and other high ranking federal and regional officials, as well as two lower level coaches from Arsenal Football Club, with which Dashen has signed a promotional deal, graced the ceremony on Sunday, November 15, 2015.
It took two years and three billion Br to set up this plant on a 12ha land at Tebase area in Debre Birhan, 129Km northeast of Addis Abeba. Elmi Olindo Contractors Plc, an Ethiopian company formed in 1937, undertook the construction work with supervision by two consultancy firms, MH Engineering Consultancy and PTS.
Dashen Brewery is owned by TIRET Corporate, an endowment under the Amhara National Democratic Movement (ANDM), which has a 50pc share, while Duet, a UK investment company and Vasari Global, Africa-focused multinational consumer goods company, jointly own the remaining 50pc. Duet was established in 2012 with 2.4 billion dollars of equity. It funds real estates and infrastructure investments.
Its first plant in Gonder, 750Km, north of Addis Abeba, cost 350 million Br. Its production capacity is 900,000 hectolitres, although it started with a third of that when it began operations in 2000.
The new plant has 12 fermenter towers, each with a capacity of 4,800 hectolitres. It brings its annual beer outputs to two million hectolitres, Yasine Yibire, quality manager at the Brewery, said
Dashen chose Debre Birhan for its new plant because of its proximity to key markets, said Devlin Hainsworth, CEO of Dashen.
“We have had good coverage in the north but not in the south; so now our customers will have the beer when and where they wish,” he added.
The brewery has already selected agents who will distribute its product. It is using “cutting edge” technology, supplied by Meura, a Belgian company, which improves the quality of the product and the production pace, said Yasine. Meura, a specializes in engineering, design, and manufacture of process equipment for breweries,
The technology has changed from manual to digital, transforming the batch-to-batch production to a continuous production cycle.
Other imported input include the packaging machinery supplied by Krones, a German company. Beer processing and filtration machinery has been supplied by Pentair Südmo, which supplies sanitary and aseptic process valves for the food, dairy, beverage, cosmetic, and pharmaceutical industries,
Currently Dashen sources barley from farmers of the northern and southern Gonder areas, including Debark, Dabat, Gayent and Este; it is now to include farmers in Northern Shewa. It produces 80pc of the malt it needs at the Gonder Malt factory, which started production a year and half ago, cutting majority of its imports from Belgium and France.
Dashen’s recent promotion deal with Arsenal, is part of the customer based marketing it is following, the CEO said.