IDC and the DTI launch first black industrialist owned industrial sanitation and water treatment chemicals manufacturing company in Free State

IDC and the DTI launch first black industrialist owned industrial sanitation and water treatment chemicals manufacturing company in Free State

 Kevali is one of the black-owned companies that have benefited from the dti’s Black Industrialists (BI) Incentive programme which aims to create black industrialists and place them at the forefront of South Africa’s industrialisation.

The IDC invested millions into the Kevali project which has created 57 direct and 12 indirect jobs, benefiting the local economy of the small town of Harrismith in the Free State. As part of the transaction, IDC also enabled employees to get a stake in the business through equity for a Workers’ Trust.

“Because we understand the critical importance of black industrialists’ participation in the chemicals sector, funding projects such as Kevali is important to the IDC,” said Shakeel Meer, IDC’s Divisional Executive for the Chemicals & Textiles Industries “Kevali Chemicals is playing a critical intermediate role in the chemicals value chain. Its products are a key input to the food and beverage industry, with businesses like this helping to reduce the ultimate costs to the consumer.” Meer said.

This business was founded by five professionals who, as a collective, realised that they had the right composition of competencies, abilities and experience.  The name Kevali was aptly coined for the company as it means supreme knowledge. “We recognised that there were no significant black companies playing in the chemical’s field, we saw a gap in the market and put together solutions that would address these gaps. That was how Kevali Chemicals came to be,” says Funeka Khumalo, Executive Director at Kevali Chemicals.

In the last financial year the IDC approved over R2bn in funding in the chemicals value chain, of which over R1bn was to black industrialists.

“As a country it is crucial that we develop our own key industrial productive capabilities. We continue to invest in regional economies and ensure that black industrialists across all provinces are unearthed and assisted to grow their businesses and local manufacturing,” added Meer.

“We see huge potential within water treatment as a black empowered company.  We will be focusing on our water treatment division over the next two years and look at possibly expanding the plant to manufacture water treatment chemicals,” says Khumalo.

The IDC’s Free State Regional Manager, Ms. Nina Yose, said the corporation’s strategies to enhance inclusivity are bearing fruit, “Our funding for black industrialists is increasing and this has improved black participation in the formal economy. We are very pleased to be partnering with Kevali, a group of dynamic individuals who display a high work ethic which will go a long way in ensuring the success of their business ” she said.

Entrepreneurs in the Free State seeking funding can contact the IDC’s regional office on 051 411 1450 or

For more information:

Neo Sebiloane – Publicity Manager Industrial Development Corporation

Tel:  +27 (0) 11 269 3442



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