Tanzania Daily News (Dar es Salaam)

26 January 2011

Tanzania: Sayona Drinks Limited for 3 Billion - Expansion

ONE of Dar es Salaam-based fast growing beverage company - Sayona Drinks Limited (SDL) - has embarked on an ambitious expansion project to cope up with the exponential demand of its products in the local market.

SDL General Manager Tushar Mehta said in the city on Wednesday that the company has already acquired a state-of the art machinery to boost production at the Mikocheni based factory.

The firm, a subsidiary of Motisun Holding Group, has invested 2.2 million US dollars (over 3bn/-) on the expansion project, which will triple production upon completion.

"The machineries are here and installation works have already started...production will hopefully start by mid February," Mr Mehta told the 'Daily News,' noting that the new machines will increase production of Sayona soda from the current 120,000 bottles a day to 480,000 bottles.

The company has announced the expansion programme in just two days following the rebranding of its Sayona soft drink as 'Sayona Twist.' Under the rebranding, Sayona Soda would now be known as 'Sayona Twist Soda.'

Sayona Drinks, the first Tanzanian firm to introduce carbonated soft drinks in plastic bottles, describes its juices, water and carbonated soft drinks as the most popular in the market with cola sod, orange soda, lemon soda and mango juice as some of the most popular products.

"We always strive to offer products of supreme quality but at cheap prices that majority Tanzanians can afford," said the GM, hinting that the company is eying export markets of Kenya, Mozambique and Uganda.

He assured that upon completion of the expansion programme, the firm will increase employment to Tanzanians by 20 per cent from the current 320 to about 400 employees.

"We feel it our obligation to expand local production and create jobs for Tanzanians instead of relying on imports, which export our jobs," charged Mr Mehta.

SDL, which boasts of hi-tech infrastructure, skilled manpower, strict bottling procedures and high quality raw materials, says it's determined to cope with the competition through offering products of best quality to consumers.

However, erratic power supply in the country remains one of the most serious problems impeding the company progress, "Every time we have to run a generator, we operate at a loss but we cannot stop production because that will affect our supplies." The factory operates 24 hours.

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