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Partnership for distribution and production in the DRC

FIBC - Production Location - LC Shankar

Partnership for distribution and production in the DRC

Feb. 7, 2023

- PRESS RELEASE –

Johannesburg, Tuesday 7 February 2023 – LC Packaging has announced the intention to enter a partnership with Buenassa, a DRC-based company dedicated to the implementation of responsible mining practices throughout the supply chain, and Shankar Packagings Ltd., one of the leading FIBC producers based in India, for the distribution and production of FIBCs (bulk bags) in the DRC.

There is clearly an increasing demand for FIBCs in the DRC and specifically in the Katanga region. The DRC government supports the local supply of mining related equipment, expertise and services. LC Packaging wishes to respond to this demand which requires a reliable partner in the DRC. It also fits with the vision of the company to support local entrepreneurship and the development of local communities in a responsible and sustainable way. Buenassa has the purpose to develop mining related services and products in order to improve the supply chain of critical minerals through the financing of artisanal and small scale mining operations, and the development of local processing, recycling and trading of critical minerals. The goal is to increase the benefit for the DRC in general and local communities in particular.

The views of both companies combined will clearly support the DRC government's efforts to foster a traceable, ethical and responsible mining sector, focused on critical minerals and aligned with the aim of contributing to a just energy transition in the context of global climate action.

Two-phase approach

The intended partnership is set to develop in two distinct stages. Phase one concerns the distribution of FIBCs produced in South Africa and Asia to large-scale, artisanal & small-scale mines in the DRC (including but not restricted to copper, cobalt, lithium and zinc mines). Bulk bags will be stored at a local warehouse, allowing for continuity of supply and rapid response to demand peaks. Phase two intends to include a joint venture between LC Packaging, Buenassa and Shankar Packagings Ltd. for the purpose of creating a production facility in Kolwezi, Province de Lualaba, DRC. This joint venture is expected to generate employment, enhance labour skills through training and development as well as promote the use of locally produced FIBCs (bulk bags) within the DRC.

A strategic partnership

Richard Green, Regional Director Southern Africa at LC Packaging, looks forward to partnering with Buenassa and Shankar Packagings in the DRC: “LC Packaging has been supplying bulk bags to numerous DRC mining entities over the past 12 years. We are confident that the intended partnership for distribution and local production of FIBCs between the three of us will strengthen our position in the DRC and will contribute to the further development of the Lualaba region.”

Eddy Kioni, CEO of Buenassa, said: "We are delighted to join forces with LC Packaging and Shankar Packagings, two world leaders in the FIBC sector, as this is a strategic opportunity for us to position ourselves in a key market to support the activities of mining, agri-industrial and other industrial companies in the DRC by providing them with the high-quality containers they constantly need to package their products. On top of that, through the establishment of an assembly plant planned by the end of this year that will provide local employment in Lualaba, this alliance also aims to transfer know-how to an economically dynamic region that is seeking to shape its industrialisation program.”

Keshav Pandya, Vice President of Shankar Packagings, highlights the long-term relationship between Shankar Packagings and LC Packaging: “Our association with LC Packaging goes back more than 20 years. Since 2012, we have been producing FIBCs for the Southern African market at LC Shankar, a joint venture between Shankar Packagings and LC Packaging. Achieving a local presence in the DRC is a great way to expand our global reach.”

The three parties will organise themselves in such a way that the negotiations are moving ahead with appropriate speed and in an efficient manner.

About LC Packaging

LC Packaging is a family-owned company and international manufacturer and producer of flexible packaging solutions with headquarters based in the Netherlands. LC Packaging has been active in the packaging industry since 1923 and has its own production facilities for FIBCs and corrugated board in Europe, South Africa, and Asia. With a turnover of 250 million euros in 2022 and more than 1,700 employees in sales offices, warehouses, and production facilities in 21 countries, including South Africa, it is LC Packaging’s goal to contribute to a world without waste. LC Packaging specialises in custom packaging products and packaging from stock to 30,000 customers in the industrial and agricultural industry worldwide. In terms of sustainability, the company is particularly recognised for its efforts in labour practices and human rights, and sustainable procurement practices.
www.lcpackaging.com

About Buenassa

Buenassa SARL is a Congolese-owned startup company in the DRC focused on financing, processing, recycling and trading critical minerals with an emphasis on the traceability of such minerals and the implementation of responsible practices along the entire supply chain with the aim to foster local mineral beneficiation programs. Buenassa builds partnerships with local suppliers to produce a diverse range of resources for international markets, assisted by international technical and financial partners. Buenassa’s mission is to deliver physical commodities efficiently, timeously and at the highest level of service with a focus on Climate Smart Mining.
www.buenassa.com

About Shankar Packagings Ltd.

Shankar Packagings Ltd. is a leading FIBC producer based in India. The company has a global spread of production sites specialising in the manufacturing of high-end food grade and industrial FIBCs (bulk bags). LC Packaging and Shankar Packagings Ltd. have a joint venture production entity in South Africa operating as LC Shankar.
www.shankarpack.com