East African Portland Cement and the University of Nairobi have entered into negotiations with an aim of signing a Memorandum of Understanding on possible areas of collaborations.
Speaking during the meeting, Simon Peter Ole Nkeri, the Managing Director, East African Portland Cement, noted that it is time to plug into the innovations ecosystem to help the giant cement manufacturer improve its processing process, quality controls, waste management and cut down on raw materials costs.
Prof. Peter Ngau, Principal, College of Agriculture and Architecture, CAE, who represented the Vice- Chancellor, Prof. Peter Mbithi at the meeting noted that the University is rich in human capital and together the two institutions can work on various innovations to help the 84 year old cement manufacturer improve its manufacturing process and work on cost reduction measures.
East African Portland Cement is facing competition from six other cement manufacturers in the region and has to innovate to stay competitive. The innovations will revolve around processing, tapping energy from solar, sourcing of raw materials, creative marketing, quality controls, data modelling and getting insights from previous data to improve sales and help in forecasting. The two institutions agreed to partner with each other on forthcoming Nairobi Innovations Week.
The two companies also agreed on doing joint research projects, internship opportunities for students pursuing engineering disciplines, among others.
Also present during the meeting were Prof. William Ogara, Director, Centre for International Programs and Links, Mr. John Orindi, Director, Corporate Affairs among others.