History of Garadagh cement plant (Holcim Azerbaijan)

 

1949 - The construction of Garadagh Cement Plant began per the Decree of the USSR Council of Ministers and put into operation with two wet kiln lines. Through its provision of cement, the plant contributed greatly to mass construction in the former Soviet Union. 

1957- 1964 - increasing demand for cement in the former Soviet Union required the launch of three more kilns. This in turn led to significant increase in production volume. Thus, Garadagh Cement Plant was considered to be the largest enterprise among the Caucasian countries for its production capacity. Furthermore, it was the first plant in the former Soviet Union to host the production of oil-well cement. 

1970-1996 - The plant provided employment to qualified specialists, enabling a further increase in production volume of 1,500,000 tons during 1970s. However, the collapse of the Soviet Union caused a significant decline in production volume. This limited production continued until the privatization of the plant by Holcim Group.

1999 - Holcim entered Azerbaijan through acquisition of Garadagh Cement in the course of the privatization, and fulfilled the contractual investment obligations of 27 million USD, which constituted the largest non-oil sector investment in Azerbaijan. This contributed greatly to enhancing plant performance, with production volume reaching 900.000 tons in 2003, and 1.140.000 tons in 2004. Reaching the production volume target of 1.300.000 tons was expected in 2005.

February 2007 - Holcim received the privatization certificate based on the government requirements. Today Holcim is the majority shareholder of Hoclim (Azerbaijan) OJSC with 70% of shares. Azerbaijan Investment Company holds 10%, EBRD 10%, and other minority shareholders of 10%. In May, 2008, the President of Switzerland, Mr Pascal Couchepin visited the Garadagh plant, during his first-ever official visit to Azerbaijan. Mr Couchepin was informed about the investment of Holcim Group for New Kiln line at Garadagh plant and its significance for the Azerbaijani economy.

14 April Following the above mentioned high-level visit, the ground-breaking ceremony of the New Kiln project was held with participation of the President of Azerbaijan Republic, H.E. Ilham Aliyev and Mr. Markus Akermann, then-CEO of Holcim Ltd, on 14th April, 2009. These visits illustrated the high-level economic and political support to the New Kiln Project of Holcim (Azerbaijan) OJSC.

April, 2012 -  "Garadagh Cement" OJSC was renamed to Holcim (Azerbaijan) OJSC.

10 July, 2012 - opening ceremony of the new kiln line was conducted with participation of President of Azerbaijan, H.E. Ilham Aliyev, and CEO of Holcim Ltd, Mr. Bernard Fontana.

July 2015 - Holcim Azerbaijan took the next step in company history and became part of a stronger organization called LafargeHolcim (LH). Bringing together two companies Lafarge and Holcim with a combined experience of over 180 years in the cement, concrete, and aggregates sectors to create the leading company in the building materials industry, over 115,000 employees and operate in 90 countries around the world.