The Slic plant in Dammam, Saudi Arabia

The Slic plant in Dammam, Saudi Arabia

Slic stays on a growth path

The company has made great progress in keeping customers safe in industries and the military with an eye on constantly staying abreast of trends and requirements

October 2015

Saudi Arabia’s leading manufacturer of industrial safety and military footwear has stayed on the growth path, impressing its clients with new products to deal with the rigours of work in power generation plants and petrochemical facilities.

Saudi Leather Industries Company (Slic), which has a plant in Dammam, Eastern Province, is closing in on the million-pair milestone having achieved sales of 813,000 pairs in 2014. According to the company, sales have increased year-on-year, reaching last year’s total from around 450,000 pairs in 2010.

The company has kept abreast with trends, introducing new models to meet the special requirements of industries including petrochemical and oil and gas, says marketing and sales manager Abdulmohsin Al Khaldi.

“For Saudi Electricity Company, Slic made special footwear with the EH standard to withstand 18,000 kV. We are now selling similar ones to other electricity-sector companies, and the results have been fantastic,” exulted Al Khaldi.

“We developed new shoes for oil and petrochemical companies including Aramco and Sabic and, again, we’ve been very successful.”

In all cases, the footwear went through stringent testing before receiving final approval from the various parties, said Al Khaldi.

Slic footwear is made from cow and buffalo leather, polyurethane and Clarino material. Raw material for production is sourced in India, China, South Africa and the US. 

Overall, Slic’s best-selling product was style 59102, designed for use in factories. In 2014, the company sold 177,616 pairs, approximately 28 per cent of the total for the year. “59102 has been through many developments to ensure that our customers gain the greatest advantage in terms of quality and price,” said Al Khaldi.

The top military footwear was Style 59597, accounting for 12 per cent of sales.

Style 59102: the company’s best-selling product

Style 59102: the company’s best-selling product

Safety shoes of styles 59351 with PU injected sole and 4530 with PU-injected unit sole were the next best, accounting for 13 per cent and 5 per cent of sales respectively. Total production capacity at Slic’s plant is 1.6 million pairs of work, military and formal footwear in three shifts. The company has installed state-of-the-art equipment including Desma PU injection from Germany, Gusbi PU pouring from Italy and other equipment from the UK, the US, Taiwan and other markets.

Slic achieved a sales turnover of SR59 million ($15.73 million) last year with the home market contributing nearly 80 per cent of the total. Overseas destinations were the Gulf, Middle East and Africa with Qatar emerging as the top export market in 2014.

Since the beginning of 2014, the company did not penetrate any new market, Al Khaldi stated.

Slic has a galaxy of firms using its products. The list includes Saudi Aramco, Saudi Electricity Company (SEC), Saudi Airlines, Sabic, Azmeel Co, Red Arrow, Amiantit Group, Zamil Group, Savola Group, Almarai, Al Yamama, Nesma Co, Al Suwaidi, Saudi Oger and Saudi Binladen.

It has an experienced sales team that covers the whole of Saudi Arabia. It operates branches in Riyadh, Jeddah, Yanbu and Jubail as well as having agents abroad who operate in Oman, the UAE, Jordan, Yemen, Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain and Nigeria.

Slic also markets and sells other leather products which are not produced in its production facilities. For instance, it supplies security belts to Saudi Aramco with whom it has a contract valid until 2018.

Saudi Leather Industries Company was established in 1982 as a joint venture with the American Wolverine company, one of the world’s leading companies in the shoes industry, and operated under the name Saudi Shoes Company. In 1984, the Saudi owners bought the market share of the American partner, making it a fully Saudi enterprise. It is now owned by Al Bilad Group and partners.

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