Akij Ceramics has inaugurated its new tableware plant equipped with Sacmi technology. The inauguration ceremony took place last year at the Dhaka InterContinental Hotel in the presence of Sk. Bashir Uddin, Managing Director of the Akij Group. Tableware is a growing and dynamic sector, and, in Bangladesh, the industry is moving towards the best technology available on the market to make high quality products destined for export. These trends are behind the choice of Akij, the market leader in the country and already Sacmi partner in the sanitaryware and tiles fields, to move into tableware by carrying out an ambitious production expansion plan.
“Following the success of the tiles and sanitaryware businesses –observes Mohammod Khourshed Alam, Marketing and Sales Director– the Akij Group has introduced this new business to become a top player in a sector undergoing rapid growth and gain a good position both on the home and overseas markets”. Sacmi is the supplier of all the core pieces of machinery for the new plant which covers an area of 50,000 m2 next to the Trishal headquarters, 60 km north of the capital Dhaka and, at full operating capacity, will give work to 2,000 people.
In particular, the supply includes a Sacmi ATM 018 spray-dryer with an evaporation capacity of 1,000 l/hour for the production of the spray-dried powder. Furthermore, there are two 450t SacmiI-Sama PHO presses for the isostatic pressing of plates in sizes up to 380 mm, both round and square.
Part of the latest generation Green Sama presses for tableware, this type of machine is specially designed to reduce the electricity consumption of the main pump by up to 30% alongside a considerable reduction also in cooling water consumption thanks to the new hydraulic system. The solutions supplied to Akij are also equipped in line with a DF-PRO dust suction system to guarantee a healthier workplace and are integrated with the OFM-8 automatic finishing stations and with the loading, unloading, and automatic piece stacking system.
To complete the production department Sacmi has supplied a Sama NC-Roller-2C-300 jiggering line for the manufacture of cups with a related finishing station and, finally, the automatic solutions for piece glazing; a Triplex cell for glazing plates and a Mono 10-T system for cup glazing.
Thanks to this supply, Akij can achieve a production capacity of 17 t per day –55,000 pieces– of top-quality fired and glazed products with a varied production mix. In fact, alongside the presses Sacmi has carried out 5 modelling developments, supplying Akij with the pressing tools (complete with membranes) for installation on the isostatic presses for the manufacture of five different models in a variety of shapes and sizes.
Sacmi also supplied the firing department with an 88 m long TRS roller biscuit kiln by Sacmi Forni for firing plates –complete with the system to transfer the pieces on slabs made by Sacmi– as well as a TST Sacmi-Riedhammer tunnel kiln for the reduction firing process at high temperature of the glazed product, typical for porcelain. This important supply reinforces Sacmi’s position in Bangladesh as first point of reference for the supply of complete solutions for the production of top quality “hard porcelain” pieces through its isostatic pressing technology. In addition, this project strengthens and consolidates for the future Sacmi’s long-established partnership with the Akij Group headed by Mr. Sk. Bashir Uddin, within a company vision focused on continued innovation as well as care for the environment and the local community.
The plant will soon be running at full capacity with the start-up of the new presses and spray dryer. As further confirmation of the forward-thinking and ambitious strategy of Akij, both the production infrastructure and the main machines making up the plant (starting from the spray dryer right up to the kilns) have all been designed in consideration of a possible future expansion to double production capacity by the end of 2023.