One of the largest home appliance manufacturers in the Middle East, Electrostar Group’s (ESG) principle facilities are located in the 6th of October City in Giza, covering 100,000sqm, and employing 2,500 workers.
ESG, one of Egypt’s leading manufactures, was established by Ahmed El-Menoufi in 1939 as a factory for gas cylinders. By 1980, his big ambitions led to his sons establishing ESG, starting with a modest factory manufacturing two models of refrigerators licensed by Zanussi.
In the past 30 years, Electrostar has expanded its investments and projects massively, to become one of the leaders on the local and regional markets.
ESG has grown to include Electrostar for Industries, Electrostar for Plastic Industries, and Star Industrial Factories. Today, the group manufactures a wide range of products, including refrigerators, freezers, cookers, water heaters and washing machines.
ESG’s Chairman of the Board Mohammed El-Menoufi sat with Daily News Egypt to talk about the company’s plans in Egypt for 2015.
What is your 2015 plan?
We aim to open up new markets in Africa and renew our products, and put other products in the market. [We are looking to] into new technology to be provided in products, and improve their quality. Providing high quality home appliance products and services with reasonable prices that meet consumer needs is our mission. We seek to expand our factories and branches, with the most important point being to maximise our production. Our products are not only in Egypt – we export to many countries around the world in Africa, including Libya, Tunisia and Sudan. In addition to this, we export to Asia, including Palestine, Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, Iraq and Yemen.
We aim to increase sales and profits up to 20% this year, and this will be through opening new markets in Africa and the expansion in Asia.
What are the company’s investment challenges?
The challenges facing ESG is represented in the spread of foreign goods, from Turkey and China, on the Egyptian market, in addition to commercial law problems and taxes imposed by the Egyptian Customs Authority at 10% of the product price. The governmental weakness of protecting local industry, besides labour problems, is another challenge.
What are the opportunities that the company believes are suitable for investment?
Our opportunities are represented in improving our products, as we are a very well-known company in home appliances, and success that rewards and attracts shareholders with remarkable returns. We hope the new investment law encourages investment opportunities in Egypt, and encourages companies to come to the Egyptian market.
The company is not included on the Egyptian Stock Exchange – does the company plan to be included?
Electrostar is a family business and we currently exclude the idea to sell shares in the Egyptian Stock Exchange.