ავტორი: NATIA TAKTAKISHVILI
Gazelle Finance has successfully exited from Prime Concrete LLC, a leading EPC contractor in Georgia, which was its first equity investment in Georgia. Prime Concrete is a wholly locally owned Georgian EPC contractor that has served as the general contractor on road, wastewater treatment, and other civil construction and infrastructure projects throughout Georgia. In addition, Prime Concrete has developed a specialty in marine construction projects, such as ports, which are critical to the development and advancement of Georgia’s distribution and logistics infrastructure.
As background, Gazelle Finance provided critical support to Prime Concrete starting in 2018 to grow their business, keep pace with the increasing demand for engineering and construction services for infrastructure investment projects. The result is that Prime Concrete is now the leading Georgian EPC contractor following the best practices of international construction standards, particularly regarding the marine construction space. In the first phase of the partnership with Prime Concrete, Gazelle finance injected USD 1.0 million equity to increase technical capabilities of the company. The follow-on investment of USD 1.5 million in working capital financing was crucial for Prime Concrete to win the bid to be general contractor for the construction of the PACE terminal in Poti port, which was completed in fall of 2022 with the help of the two leading Dutch marine engineering and construction firms Vanthek and Royal HaskoningDHV as sub-contractors; the size of the project was USD 23 million.
“Gazelle Finance has been a critical partner in helping our company to grow our business and develop the technical know-how to compete for international projects”, said Alexander Sokolovsky, CEO of Prime Concrete. “Having the institutional backing of Gazelle Finance helped us to successfully complete the PACE terminal project in Poti Port on time and budget, and now we have recently won a subcontract for major marine and land works for the APM Poti Port Expansion Project. Within this contract, Prime Concrete will double its turnover as well as its capacity.
Prime Concrete demonstrated that a local Georgian company has the capacity to compete and win domestic and international public tenders for strategic infrastructure projects such as the Pace Terminal project. This new terminal at the Poti New Sea Port will enable Georgia to handle large vessels up to 253 meters in length and with the capacity to carry up to 50,000 tons of cargo. This PACE terminal project is expected to have a highly developmental impact on Georgia. Apart from creating jobs, the improved port will increase trading capacity for the country, which is an important transit link to connect Central Asia and Europe.
“We are excited to be part of Prime Concrete’s successful progression as a local Georgian business competing on the international stage, said CEO of Gazelle Finance, Jeffrey Liebert. “The fact that Prime Concrete has leveraged the PACE terminal project to now work on the APM Poti Port Expansion Project, which is owned and operated by Maersk, is a good indicator of the strong market positioning of Prime Concrete.”
Gazelle Finance is a financing company, that invests in high-growth, small and medium-sized enterprising in the Eurasia Region, with current focus on Georgia and Armenia. Its mission is to create a better financial future for capable entrepreneurs and the communities they serve. The company seeks to identify gaps and barriers in the capital market and provide a financing solution to responsible entrepreneurs, who are carefully selected. By focusing on growing their businesses, Gazelle Finance helps local markets and economies to expand.
Established in 2008, Prime Concrete (http://www.primeconcrete.ge/en/) works as an EPC contractor in marine construction, water infrastructure and other civil work projects. Since 2012, the company created a portfolio of USD 53 MN in infrastructural projects. Prime Concrete also owns concrete production facility and manufactures aggregates for concrete and asphalt.