SUMMERCON, one of Gauteng’s biggest and busiest home-building companies, has appointed the Echo Group as “exclusive supplier” of hollow-core concrete floor slabs for its sectional-title forward development programmes.
“We have tried other hollow-core slabs on an ‘experimental’ basis, but in the end we found that Echo’s combination of product quality, design expertise and on-site professional backup is the best for us,” says Summercon operations director Simon Buys.
“The result is that we are now using Echo exclusively for our sectional-title developments.”
It’s the second such quality accolade in as many months for Echo, South Africa’s largest manufacturer of the hollow-core floor slabs. Last November, housing developer Calgro M3 said it had given Echo “preferred supplier” status.
‘“Coming from a major developer such as Summercon, this latest accolade is recognition of Echo’s standing as the clear leader in the hollow-core concrete floor slab sector of the South African building and construction industry,” says Echo Group Marketing Director Melinda Louw.
The Summercon award is a landmark event in one of the most enduring working partnerships in the South African housing construction industry – an alliance stretching back almost 30 years.
Buys estimates that since it moved into the sectional-title business in 1992, Summercon has built about 9 000 units, adding up to about 750 000m² of hollow-core floor slabs. At least 95% of those have come from Echo. But Summercon has actually been using Echo flooring technology since 1983.
Summercon completed six separate sectional title developments in the Johannesburg area last year, totalling 705 housing units. These were Tequila Sunrise in Lonehill, and Beluga, Indigo, Malibu, Shicara, and No.3 on Beaufort, in Bryanston. Virtually all were floored with Echo hollow-core concrete panels.
The latest Summercon-Echo sectional-title project for 2012 – Cara Blu, also in Bryanston – is well under way. “Echo’s on-time dependability has been a key to the free-flowing efficiency of our extensive home-building operations,” Buys says. “On top of that is the added value of the specialist expertise they bring to every project – from the drawing board all the way through to the building site. And we know that when they reach the building site their cut-to-order panels will fit, which means we can concentrate our quality control on other areas. Another plus is that the Echo system is more economical.”