Just two years of full operations in Rwanda, Brasserie des Mille Collines (BMC) the brewer of the premium Skol beer has upgraded its water treatment facility with a state-of-the art technology to cut down waste and improve production efficiency.
The facility will improve the brewery’s energy efficiency resulting in less fuel and power consumption; thus augmenting the production process.
The total cost of the entire project is valued at 1.5 Million USD and will be developed in phases.
Friday January 27, 2012 saw the inauguration of the first phase of this project at the brewery premises located at Nzove cell, Shyorongi Sector in Gasabo District. It cost BMC 0.5 Million dollars to complete the first phase, Mr. Thomas Weingarten the Managing Director confirmed the figure during a press briefing.
This project was designed in synchrony with the brewery’s expansion plan, which means the upgraded plant exceeds the current and future production requirements of the brewery.
According to Thomas, the facility has special hi-tech features that put it in no range with any of the kind in the country. “It is remotely controlled via the internet by a European supplier to ensure an effective waste water treatment”.
Through a fully functioning laboratory, waste water from production is treated and sent into the nearby environment, exceeding the highest European standards. This demonstrates BMC’s commitment to safeguarding the environment in which they operate. Also, it clearly demonstrates leadership in employing modern technology to reduce not only organic and inorganic waste, but also reducing their carbon footprint.
Mark Mugarura, Skol Marketing Manager observes that the initiative is part of the corporate social responsibility. “Being socially responsible goes way beyond just sponsoring projects. Investing massively in waste treatment indicates that BMC cares about the community and the environment. Yes, it is a requirement to every manufacturer but some people do it better than others,” he observes.
Mr. Thomas Weingarten commends Inyangye Industry’s diary and juice waste treatment facility. “Inyangye has a fantastic facility too. As we worked on ours, we collaborated in a number of aspects. We took bacteria from Inyangye which we had to grow and make it adapt to the brewery environment—which obviously took us time because bacteria from Inyangye are diary and juice accustomed”.
In the 1970w2s, due to industrialization in Europe, River Rhine lost all its aquatic life. The Dutch could neither fish nor swim in Rhine because a lot of industries damped waste in the river; making it quite hazardous. Years later, after intensive and strict environment management campaigns the river is now fine with a lot of fresh fish and people can swim in it.
You don’t want Nyabarongo River that threads through marshlands and swamps of Kigali to get to this level. Thanks to BMC for the investment in the facility.
Shaking Premium Beer Market
SKOL Brasserie Des Mille Collines is a brewery that was established in Rwanda in 2010. They are the brewers of the world famous SKOL beer and distribute it in Rwanda, Burundi and Uganda.
SKOL is an international beer drunk from Rio to Shanghai, and is currently the world’s fourth largest beer brand in terms of volume. It is easy drinking with refreshing and smooth taste brewed with natural high quality ingredients.
Launched in February 2010, the beer has been positioned as a premium beer—giving a run for money to several brewers—local and multinationals alike that target the same drinkers.
Brewed with 100% malt, those that have tasted Skol do not wish to ever drink anything else again.
It is hard to estimate the market share due to dynamics involved. Mark believes the same way. By rough estimates, he believes Skol has already captured over 15 percent of the market for premium beers.
“We uphold quality of our product and the only way to ensure this is by ensuring a thorough production process. We specialize in premium beer and are quite focused in the market—and most importantly; this brings us closer to our customers to be able to proactively respond to their demands,” explains Mr. Mugarura.
Skol is an international brand. The beer is sold and liked in many parts of the world. Characteristically, people who drink Skol stick with it all through because of its delicious taste and premium quality.
To Mr. Mugarura, Skol is closing in slow but sure. “Our strategy is simple and studied. We do not make a lot of noise but rather concentrate more on identifying who our consumers are-then strive to satisfy them beyond their expectations so that we can retain them. To us, this is more important. We closely follow their demands and desires”.
BMC may not be as big as some competitors in mass marketing campaigns but quite strategic—It invests more energy and resources in ensuring quality and product delineation to woo consumers of premium beer. “We are strategic in our approach. We want people to associate our brand with quality”.
Skol Beer Production
In a related development, Thomas says BMC is working tirelessly to respond to the fast growing consumption of Skol beer in Rwanda by increasing the brewery production capacity in the near future.
SKOL Brasserie Des Mille Collines is amidst an ambitious expansion plan to double their production capacity in 2012 by installing state of the art production equipment.
“Expansion plans have been laid out and equipment suitable for this market already identified. We intend to expand our production line to; more than double the brewing capacity, add more storage tanks and expand bottling section. Thus, the scale operation will proportionally increase”, he projects.