International Diaper Manufacturer Kimberly-Clark entered into a Sh5 billion contract manufacturing deal that will see their flagship brand Huggies now produced in the Kenyan Market.
The firm has partnered with a local manufacturer, Sai Pharmaceuticals in a deal that is set to directly create over 100 new jobs at the newly established factory in Thika.
Speaking during the announcement David Osiany, Cabinet Chief Administrative Secretary, Ministry of Industrialization, Trade and Enterprise Development said the partnership is an endorsement of Kenya as a leading investment destination.
“Such investments take us closer to our goal of elevating the manufacturing sector to contribute 15 percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP), up from the current 9 percent; which is part of the Government’s Big Four Agenda.”
He added, “Kenya’s population is literate and hardworking, making it an attractive investment destination for international brands such as Kimberly-Clark. This investment offers a great recovery plan for our Country after the effects of the deadly virus on our economy; in addition to job creation it will enhance skills transfer in manufacture of high quality hygiene products.”
Kimberly Clark Business Development Director Middle East & Africa, Kevin Achieng elaborated that the move to manufacture the premium brand locally is aimed at tripling its market market share in the next three years beginning with roll out to Uganda as of 1st January 2022, followed by Tanzania and Ethiopia. “There are one million babies born in Kenya every year and 8 Million born annually in East Africa; that is a sizable number which reflects the growing need for high quality affordable hygiene products in Africa,” said Achieng.
On his part, Rajiv Joshi Sai Pharmaceuticals Hygiene Division Chief Executive Officer, said “Covid-19’s negative impact on global supply chains accelerated our decision to invest in home-grown solutions that would secure a continuous flow of high quality hygiene products such as diapers for Africa’s markets.”
“Contract Manufacturing is commonplace in markets such as South Africa and Nigeria, we decided to make it a reality in Kenya through this partnership with Kim-Fay and Kimberly Clark,” he added.
Kim-Fay,a leading local tissue manufacturer in Kenya, has been Kimberly Clark’s local distributor for the last 25 years and has grown the brand’s availability in the region. The two will continue working closely to guarantee increased access to the Huggies brand.
In his remarks, Raj Bains, Kim-Fay’s Managing Director said, “Production of Huggies in Kenya will enable our company to be more agile and respond faster to the ever-changing consumer needs. Additionally, it ensures that we remain committed to delivering the same high quality products to our customers, matched by excellent service at an affordable price.”