Shipping & Logistics

Siginon builds Sh500m container freight station in Mombasa

A section of the Siginon CFS yard with cargo
A section of the Siginon CFS yard with cargo comprising break bulk machine parts for the Standard Gauge Railway. PHOTO | COURTESY 

Siginon Group has invested Sh500million in a new container freight station (CFS) in Mombasa.

The 13-acre base in Miritini on the outskirts of Mombasa has a capacity of 8,500 containers and will be the centre for loading and off-loading, customs verification and duty collection.

Elkana Khayo, Siginon CFS Operations manager said that the remote location of the container base was necessitated by the need to reduce traffic jams caused by trucks while delivering or collecting cargo within the city of Mombasa.

“It is also a convenient cargo pick and drop zone for transporters ferrying cargo to or from Nairobi and beyond,” he said.

The freight station also includes three warehouses to accommodate over 18,000 metric tonnes of loose bulk cargo. The base handles 20 and 40 foot containers including refrigerated, machinery, steel and dry bulk cargo.

“Since commencement of our operations, business at the container base has grown steadily. We recently handled steel for China Road and Bridge Corporation (CRBC) for the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) project and this has boosted our business position and cut a niche for us in the industry,” said Mr Elkana.

The logistics company has invested in modern equipment like forklifts and reach stackers which are small vehicles used to transport cargo over a short distance to reduce dwell time for trucks when loading and off-loading.

To prevent theft of cargo in the expansive base, the company has installed an integrated security surveillance and access control systems to ensure that they are able to identify all persons in contact with cargo in their custody at the container freight station.

“Cargo security is a key priority for us. Siginon CFS is equipped with ultra-modern state of the art security details to ensure security to our clients’ cargo while in the yard,” said Mr Khayo.

Since 2013, Mr Khayo said that overall positive economic growth has led to good business for the company thus providing a favourable environment for investment and expansion.

Siginon CFS, an arm of Siginon Group offers transport, customs clearance, warehousing, sea freight, air freight, project cargo handling and ground handling services in Nairobi, Mombasa and Eldoret.

The company also invested Sh1 billion in building a new warehouse at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA), a facility that is meant to support the company’s growing freight business.

The new facility has an estimated annual throughput volume of 60,000 tonnes of cargo up from the 10,000 tonnes capacity of the previous warehouse.