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Binani cement to set up Factory in Orissa, W Bengal
Binani Cement is expanding its reach across India. It will set up plants in Orissa, West Bengal and Gujarat. It is believed to help Binani improve its realisations and compete with top manufacturers like ACC, Ambuja and Grasim.

RAJASTHAN-BASED Binani Cement is all set to change its image as a pan-India country. The company plans to set up a cement producing factory in Orissa and West Bengal. According to company sources, Binani is setting up two facilities in Gujarat and also plans to venture into West Bengal and Orissa. These new units will let the company have access in the western and eastern regions of the country.

The country’s top cement makers – ACC, Ambuja Cements, Grasim and UltraTech – have presence in various locations across the country. For instance, players like India Cements, Lafarge, Binani Cement, JK Cement and Jaypee Cement are trying to shed their regional player image. All are adding capacities in different regions.

If the trend in the building material’s prices is any indication, the differences in realisation is clearly seen. For example, the northern region saw prices ranging from Rs 230-232 for a 50kg bag of cement where as the western and southern regions saw prices at Rs 245-250 a bag. The eastern market, on the other hand, witnessed the lowest prices during the quarter at Rs 225-230 a bag. "It is not wise to put all eggs in the same basket. Sooner or later, one has to go for a pan-country presence so that one can hedge itself from the ups and downs of the industry. Realisation in some states is better at a times as compared with the others," said Vinod Juneja, managing director, Binani Cement. Rajasthan-based Binani Cement is setting up two facilities in Gujarat and also plans to venture either into West Bengal or Orissa. These new units will let the company have access in the western and eastern regions of the country.

India Cements is probably the first south-based cement maker to step in the north and west with plans in Himachal Pradesh and Rajasthan. Similarly, Kanpur-based JK Cement is setting up a plant deep south in Karnataka. Jaypee is going ahead with huge expansion projects in Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh and Jharkhand whereas French major Lafarge is eyeing Karnataka, Meghalaya and Rajasthan after Himachal Pradesh and Chhattisgarh. "Venturing into new markets within the country will help companies improve realisations as the industry’s average realisation has dipped to $100-120 a tonne from $180-200 a tonne a few quarters back," said a cement expert.

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