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Stone, Hard Man For Problems To Deter

Stone, Hard Man For Problems  To Deter
October 04
14:00 2014

When the heavy rains in December caused parts of Navua to be flooded, Stone was not a slight bit deterred to close down his sweat-earned business.
Stone, as he is known by family and friends, his Chinese name is Shiwenguang, started Stone Concrete Limited, aptly called after him and also because of the nature of his business.
Stone Concrete is the manufacturer of concrete block cement located on the outskirts of Navua at Qaributa, which opened mid-year last year just a short distance away from newly-opened Navua Hospital.
Five years ago, Mr Stone, originally from Fujin on mainland China, went to the Republic of Congo where he started a small scale family supermarket business there.
He moved to Fiji at the beginning 2013 where he saw an opportunity to venture into concrete block-making as Fiji’s construction industry is, with no doubt, increasing.
Hence, it came as no surprise that Mr Stone wanted to do whatever he could to revive his infant business to serve the sector.

Fiji’s construction
Fiji’s value of construction, as released by the Bureau of Statistics the past year was hovering just on $100 million. It was just below $80 million in 2012.
This year, the stats indicate $102 million construction already taking place by Q2. Therefore there’s a strong indication that this would like jump even further at year end.
So Mr Stone started picking up the pieces of what was left on his sizable land.
To date, he has invested $2 million from creating the business, mitigating the flood by creating a concrete wall around premises and hoping the best for the future.

Why Fiji?
“Fiji is paradise,” Mr Stone said simply.
“When you’ve lived in Congo for five years, you will understand,” he tells through a translator.
“Congo is a French-speaking country, and even in that five years I still don’t know much French, except in just simple conversation.
“The way I have learned English here is so much more progress that I have made in French back in Congo.
“I also want to invest in Fiji because this is one of the fastest growing islands in the South Pacific.
“There is plenty of opportunities here I can see and it’s for this other reason that I’m happy to be here.”
Mr Stone’s current business capacity is only capable of supplying concrete blocks to Navua, which is his current market.
However, he hopes to invest a further $1 million to enable him to get bigger machinery to broaden his market to Suva.
Currently, he owns a five-tonne truck, a forklift, loader and others. He hope to get a 10-tonne truck which can load 1000 blocks at one time for delivery.
His family is in China and visits him whenever possible. but if all goes well, he plans to bring them over.

Feedback:  ranobab@fijisun.com.fj

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