Realizing the vision:SMEET Precast - Qatar
SMEET Precast entrusted Elematic with its investment in a precast concrete production factory. This factory will be the most modern precast factory in the region. The facility covers a massive area of 300,000 square meters and is to be commissioned in phases. Once operational, Phase 1 of the facility will house all the equipment required to produce all wall and floor elements. The new plant incorporates a state-of-the-art hollow-core slab production line consisting of six 150-meter-long casting beds. The Elematic Extruder E9 produces 150 mm, 200 mm, 265 mm, 320 mm and 400 mm-thick hollow-core slabs. The production line also includes BedMaster EL411 and Saw EL 130 machines to guarantee high-quality end products. The new factory also includes two casting beds for beams and columns that produce units for integrated frame and skeletal systems. For the manufacture of wall elements, the factory has been equipped with hydraulic tilting tables with aluminum side shutters and the FaMe fastening method. “In order to run a smooth and uninterrupted production process, the co-operation deal also includes a long-term maintenance agreement as well as installation service and a selection of other support services,” says Elematic’s area sales director Raimo Juhantalo. When selecting the supplier for its precast factories, SMEET researched the choices carefully. “After conducting a very in-depth and objective evaluation based on a clearly defined marking scheme, Elematic was ranked as number one in all technical rating criteria,” says Engr. Majid Al-Bader, CEO of SMEET. “The co-operation with Elematic has been very fruitful and we are looking forward to continuing our work together in the future,” he says. “Good, long-term relationships with our customers made it possible to find the best solution to meet SMEET’s needs”, says Mr. Juhantalo. ”The Middle East continues to be one of the most important markets for Elematic, and we are pleased to be able to develop the precast market together with innovative companies like SMEET.”
Precast at the core of SMEET's strategy
SMEET was established in 2010 by Qatari Real Estate Investment Company, Barwa Real Estate Company, and the First Investor. Engr. Al-Bader says that his company is committed to the Qatar Vision 2030, which has been reflected in SMEET’s business strategy. According to its vision, SMEET Precast aims to be the premier manufacturer and supplier of quality precast building solutions and precast building materials in Qatar and the region. The company's strategy for reaching this goal is to provide a complete package of services that are realized by teams of experts and specialists: structural engineers, technicians, surveyors, production specialists, foremen, and safety-certified installation crew. The precast market in Qatar, along with the expanding investments in real estate and infrastructure projects, continues to develop rapidly and presents a huge potential opportunity for capable suppliers. “We are very confident that precast has a bright future in Qatar. SMEET is determined to be the leading manufacturer of precast products in the MENA region,” says the SMEET CEO. The precast industry has high barriers for entry due to the relatively large investment, local licensing, and permitting requirements and, of course, extensive technical know-how,” he continues. “SMEET has already become one of the key players in serving landmark projects in Qatar. The company specializes in the production and supply of Ready Mix and Precast Concrete for the construction industry and our current focus is on these market segments,” Al-Bader explains. The company is also working towards setting up a number of satellite plants which will serve key customer projects. “This production capability and versatility enables the company to meet all concrete requirements demanded by our customers,” says Engr. Al-Bader. Although the initial focus is primarily upon cement-based products for the construction industry, SMEET is planning to be active in other building materials as well. It offers its customers a full range of value-added services, including concrete consultation, concrete solutions, precast design consultation, and the erection of precast concrete at construction sites. SMEET Precast offers the best solution for every need SMEET’s own experts bring with them a great deal of knowledge acquired over years of work experiences in Europe, Asia, and the Gulf countries. “Their working partnership with GCC’s foremost consultants, developers, and contractors of mixed-use developments, housing compounds, official and residential blocks, car parks, industrial buildings, stadia and civil engineering projects have endowed them with valuable knowledge over the years,” says Engr. Al-Bader. Precast building systems include frame and skeletal structures, which are widely used for multi-story buildings. These are ideal for buildings which require a great degree of flexibility, such as industrial buildings, shopping malls, parking structures, and sporting facilities. They incorporate an assembly of bearing and non-load bearing walls with hollow-core slab floorings. Precast facades are both decorative and structural and constitute an economical solution since they reduce the need for columns, beams, and shear walls. The most widely used type of precast flooring is pre-stressed hollow-core slabs, which have many advantages over cast-in-situ floors. “A major advantage of precast technology is the economy and speed of erection,” Engr. Al-Bader points out. Precast concrete is a sophisticated product that can be customized to the highest standards according to customers’ requirements. SMEET Precast is designed to have capacity for a large volume of special infrastructure precast units, such as railway sleepers, tunnel elements, and quay walls, to meet the increasing demands of Qatar’s infrastructure investments.
Proven quality and well-managed processes
SMEET Precast’s design team works together with the client at all stages of the project. “Our quality management system is based on the ISO 9001:2008 standard, thus ensuring that operations are regulated in compliance with this standard,” explains Engr. Al-Bader. The stereotypical image of the concrete industry being grey and having a negative impact on the environment is something SMEET wants to change. CEO Al-Bader says that SMEET is determined to redefine the outdated perceptions of precast building. “We match together the rapid advancements in science and technology with determination, dedication, commitment, and good governance. SMEET will be heading the transformation and development of the building materials industry in the region,” he explains.
Qatar looks ahead
In recent years, Qatar’s oil and gas revenues have enabled the country to attain one of the highest per capita incomes in the world. The country’s immense wealth has kept it stable during the past years and the focus has been on improving infrastructure and providing services for the Qatari people. Qatar is now looking at the period up to and after the World Cup 2022, says Elematic’s Juhantalo. SMEET and its owners are aiming to be a major participant in the state’s infrastructure projects. In the private sector, the country is facing a great need for low-cost housing for workers. The plan is to build large “Labour Cities” with all services for up to 50,000 inhabitants. Furthermore, Qatar is investing in future generations by building educational facilities in Education City, a 14-square kilometer area designed to serve students from school age to research level. Education City hosts branches of six US universities, one UK university, and one French university, and it is the flagship project of the Qatar Foundation. The construction of the Medical University of Qatar is already ongoing. Engr. Al-Bader and his colleagues are very confident about the future. “Based on recent studies and forecasts, it is anticipated that the construction industry in the state of Qatar will witness a significant boom before the World Cup 2022 and after towards the Qatar Vision 2030. It is expected that a large number of strategic projects will be launched and started during the coming years. Such projects will create huge opportunities for building material manufacturers and great potential for precast products. SMEET intends to take a major share of these projects,” concludes Al-Bader. Elematic has delivered the following products to SMEET Precast in Qatar: Complete hollow-core slab production line
- Casting beds 6 pcs, each 150 m long for hollow-core slabs
- Casting beds 2 pcs for beams and columns
- Extruder E9 for production of 150 mm, 200 mm, 265 mm, 320 mm and 400 mm-thick hollow-core slabs
- Slab Saw EL1300
- BedMaster EL411Tilting tables FaMe fastening method, magnets, and side forms ELiPLAN ERP Software