Changing the Skyline of Dar es Salaam
Writer: Matthew Staff
Project Manager: Stuart Parker
Dar es Salaam Glass Works (DGW) has brought peace of mind and the highest quality operations to its ever-growing range of customers across Tanzania and is now looking to leverage its influence further through expansion and diversification across its service range and project portfolio.
DGW’s ambition according to Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Sadiq Datoo, is “to be the market leader in glass, aluminium and glazing solutions in East Africa which will be achieved through our commitment to quality, service, value and continuous innovation”.
“We shall always be committed to meeting the highest customer experience and fulfil our responsibilities both socially and for the industry at-large through our continued investment in research and development in order to capitalise on technological advancements, while at the same time implementing energy efficient processes,” he adds.
With 40 years of experience in the design, fabrication and installation of high quality fenestration products – including, but not limited to structural glazing, curtain wall, doors, windows, roof glazing and skylights, as well as aluminium cladding, suspended ceilings, partition walls, louvers and shop fronts – this variety is a reflection of the level of utmost confidence shared by both new and existing clients in DGW’s ability to deliver the highest quality workmanship and product solutions on time and within budget.
Add an even more extensive array of sub-sectors within each of these divisions and it is no surprise that DGW is now the go-to operator in one of the continent’s most burgeoning construction domains.
“From its humble origins in Bridge Street, DGW has grown into the largest specialist glazing contractor and fabricator of aluminium and glass in Tanzania and is responsible for the glazing of some the largest and most prestigious projects across East Africa,” Datoo says. “By focusing largely on the commercial market through customisable fit-outs and installations, careful honing of relationships – driven by the now expected levels of unrivalled quality – have combined to make DGW an indigenous success story worthy of some of the most iconic buildings across the Dar es Salaam skyline.”
A potent duality of catering for almost every aspect of a building, with a portfolio that comprises the majority of significant constructs in Tanzania especially eliminates any cause for concern that DGW has in terms of market competition, but this is certainly not to say that DGW rests on its laurels or has become complacent in any way.
The pressure on maintaining a reputation as a regional leader – as DGW proudly is across glazing and interior glass fabrication in East Africa – is offset by the management’s continuous strive to find new projects and make its mark in the public eye.
The fruits of this ambition are evident through the fact that DGW has played a key role in the development of major iconic infrastructure projects, including the new airport in Kenya as well as the very first green certified building in Tanzania (NHC Place).
Other notable projects across Dar es Salaam include PSPF Golden Jubilee Towers, Airtel HQ, Kilimanjaro Hotel, Maktaba House, NSSF Waterfront, International Labour Office and recently the BRT-Bus station amongst others. Once again, it is DGW’s turnkey capabilities and breadth of experience which makes DGW such an attractive partner.
In respect of the fifth largest building in Tanzania – PSPF Golden Jubilee Towers – DGW demonstrated its experience and expertise across structural glazing, aluminium composite panels, energy saving glass, internal office partitions, automatic doors, glass lifts and skylights; while the NSSF Waterfront House project allowed for areas of cladding, roofing, space decks and balustrades to flourish.
Dar es Salaam’s International Labour Office offered further opportunities for DGW to showcase its skills, while the project for The Hyatt Regency in Dar es Salaam’s city centre demonstrated the DGW’s variation in terms of sector demographic and product provision.
“I can proudly say that most of the iconic buildings in East Africa are one of ours and we are close to announcing some new products in the near future which we are also excited about,” Datoo enthuses.
High quality supply and fitting
Equally contributory to DGW’s success story, alongside its renowned portfolio and product offering, is its much more all-encompassing culture of local enrichment and organic growth through its commitment to the Tanzanian labour market.
“As a local Tanzanian-based Company, DGW is an equal opportunity employer, employing more than 200 mainly local Tanzanian staff who it invests heavily in through on-the-job training aimed at ensuring high productivity, motivation and professionalism,” comments Datoo.
Similarly, behind-the-scenes structural improvements incorporate extensive capital investments to ensure that the business keeps ahead of consumer and industry trends, and to make sure it can facilitate its own comprehensive range of contemporary services and solutions as efficiently as possible.
“We have extensive machinery and trained personnel to ensure high quality supply and fitting,” notes Datoo. “It has always been a priority to stay ahead of the curve when it comes to research and development of new technologies in order to enhance efficiency and quality.
“As a result, we have invested heavily in the state-of-the-art machinery and equipment, while at the same time ensuring that local architects, partners and key stakeholders are kept informed about the use and performance of any new technology within the market.”
In true spirit to DGW’s commitment to technological development and industry knowhow, DGW organises and sponsors an annual conference in which it invites delegates from across the industry to attend and partake, including the top product suppliers of glass and aluminum who are given a platform to speak about new developments and trends affecting the market.
In addition, on a monthly basis, DGW also conducts a number of seminars for staff and other key stakeholders – including architects, engineers, consultants and students – to improve product and sector knowledge with a view to fostering economic, social as well as environmentally sustainable solutions.
The driving force behind DGW is the Managing Director, Mr Shiraz G Jessa, who since inception has had the vision and determination to expand the Company from a small one-man show to the largest specialist glazing contractor and fabricator in aluminium and glass in Tanzania.
“DGW has now expanded into Kenya and Uganda where it has completed projects and won contracts for some of the largest glazing projects in the region,” Datoo adds.
The DRC and Rwanda also now sit firmly in the sights of the DGW for the coming 12 months as it seeks to capitalise on its market-leading position in East Africa.