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About Cemkem

Cemkem supplies, distributes and manufactures the additives and admixtures that enhance leading construction brands’ products. But that’s just part of our offer.

What makes us really stand out is our technical support team – industry experts will take your construction products to the next level.

About Cemkem

Cemkem supplies, distributes and manufactures the additives and admixtures that enhance leading construction brands’ products. But that’s just part of our offer.

What makes us really stand out is our technical support team – industry experts will take your construction products to the next level.

Meet the team

At Cemkem, personal chemistry is as important as the chemistry in our labs. So, you won’t find your typical sales people here. Instead, we hire talented people who build long-term relationships and use their technical know-how to put our customers at the heart of everything they do. 

  • Alistair Sharp

    Technical Services Manager

    Having worked in the construction chemical and coatings industries since 1999, Alistair uses his extensive experience to lead our technical services team. He loves nothing more than unravelling complex chemical challenges to refine and create the compounds that enhance our customers’ products. This passion for improvement also extends to his team. As Alistair helps every individual discover what they’re good at and supports them to do their best work.

    Away from work, Alistair is a keen model car racer – think small-scale, remote controlled, off-road formula one. He’s well known for trying his deft handling skills and precision at his local track … and sometimes succeeding!

  • Usman Rasul

    Chief Chemist for Construction

    The team’s chief technical chemist, Usman has had a fascinating career with time spent working in the pharmaceutical and nuclear industries before moving into the construction chemical sector. Since joining Cemkem in 2018, Usman has put his PhD to work in our well-equipped labs. Where he helps our customers achieve product perfection and develops our portfolio through innovative R&D work – his favourite part of the role.  

    Evenings and weekends see Usman looking after his kids and, when he gets a spare second, watching a film or indulging in his passion for gaming.

  • Jess Judd

    Construction and Environmental Sales Manager

    A technical background gained across a number of businesses, plus a degree in concrete technology, gives Jess superb knowledge of the construction industry. Rapid career progression in a range of technical roles also exposed Jess to an array of technical work, helping her quickly acquire the knowledge she uses in her commercial role today. Much of Jess’ time is spent building relationships and finding the best possible solutions, which balance performance and cost, for our customers. 

    Outside work Jess enjoys her hobby of boxing with one white collar fight under her belt to date. Yet another great reason to have Jess in your corner.

  • Stephen Headley

    R&D Assistant

    After three years working in production for Rakem, Ste moved on to a quality control job, first for Rakem, then Cemkem. Today, he’s a key part of the technical team, supporting Usman and ensuring the quality of our products. Passionate about the R&D part of his role, Ste loves to get his brain working and thrives on the challenge of solving problems.

    Outside the nine-to-five, Ste is a family man who enjoys looking after his kids and spending time with his naughty French Bulldog, Bruno, whose favourite hobby is ripping up quilts.

  • Joseph Rafferty

    Sales Admin Support

    Fresh out of university with a history degree, Joe is the latest Rafferty to join the family business. Having worked in the warehouse and labs during summer holidays, Joe had a good feel for the firm before joining in 2023. In his current role, Joe supports the sales team with reports, emails and costings, ensuring a great experience for Cemkem’s customers. However, with training underway, Joe is on track to becoming a Sales Manager, so watch this space. 

    Outside work, rock, indie and dance fan Joe loves music festivals.  He’s equally at home at Reading and Leeds, Creamfields, or chilling out at a forest festival.

    Our history

    It’s not everyday that your business gets access to a ground-breaking innovation. But that’s what happened here at Cemkem. In 2016, one of our colleagues proposed a unique formula that enhances the performance of lithium carbonate and lithium hydroxide.

    We realised this could be a powerful additive for the construction industry, so we set to work and created the Lithkem range. By reducing setting times with less lithium, our Lithkem products result in lower manufacturing costs.

    Lithkem was just the start. By adding R&D and technical expertise to our business, we’ve expanded our product range. And become the go-to problem solvers for construction additives as well as the preferred supplier for a number of leading brands.

    • 2016

      Cemkem launches marking the start of the Rakem Group

    • 2017

      Lithkem launches and is well received by the market

    • 2017

      We move into our new purpose-built offices with cutting-edge R&D labs

    • 2018

      We become the main distributor for the complete Orgachem product range

    • 2018

      The new sales and innovation centre opens

    • 2020

      New partnership with Celopro to supply cellulose ethers to the UK market

    • 2022

      Kemfloor Ultra is launched

    • 2023

      We become the UK and Ireland distribution partner for Caltra

    • 2023

      We secure the rights to become the main distributor for the market-leading BRB range

      Your challenge + our technical team = your perfect formulation

      Here’s how we help our market-leading customers in the UK and Europe formulate their products.

      • Balance cost and performance

        Looking for a raw material equivalent at a better price? Or is your product struggling to perform? We can help. Our deep knowledge of the construction chemical industry and expansive product range means we can pinpoint the best additives or admixtures for your needs. Helping you reformulate your products for the right price and performance.

      • New product development

        Expand your range with new product grades. Create an innovative formula and bring it to market. Keep up to date with new materials and the options they bring. Or rapidly create a market-leading product that sets a new performance standard. Our technical team  can accelerate your product development and help you do more than you thought possible.

      • Reduce environmental impact

        Boost the sustainability of your products or reduce your carbon footprint without impacting performance. Our product range includes sustainably-sourced raw materials and reduced-carbon binders that significantly decrease the carbon footprint of your cementitious products. All supported by our technical team.

      • Solve compliance issues

        Raw material switches that keep you in front of regulatory change. Advice on adapting your technical data sheets and packaging following product adjustments. Help adapting your formulation so you can sell into new markets. It’s all part of our technical team’s service.

      • Enhance your technical resource

        Relieve your technical workload and access cutting-edge technology by collaborating with our team. We provide an additional layer of expertise as we work alongside you to solve your challenges. And we regularly invest in new tech for our top-of-the-range labs so you know you’re in safe hands.

      How we collaborate with new and existing customers

      • 1. You outline your challenge

        We’ll ask questions to fully understand your application issues and where your end-product will be used.
      • 2. Confidentiality is ensured

        All technical work is carried out in-house, so your formulation secrets are safe with us. And we can always sign an NDA.
      • 3. Your product or raw materials are analysed

        Ideally you’ll provide a product sample for us to assess. But our deep experience means we can also work without one.
      • 4. We propose a solution

        We’ll advise on the best formulation and ratios. This could be raw materials or finished products from our blending facility.
      • 5. Proof of concept testing

        We send a sample for you to evaluate. Or we can assess it for you in our cutting-edge lab and test in real-world conditions.
      • 6. We provide compliance advice

        From updating information on your safety data sheet to packaging adjustment recommendations, we help you stay legal.
      • 7. We supply your ideal materials

        Then it’s over to Commercial to sort out the financials and set your delivery date.

        Security of supply

        Minimise production downtime with a reliable supply of quality products from our extensive range. Free technical support is on-hand to help you explore the best raw material options based on your performance, budget and sustainability needs.

        We’ve built our reputation for security of supply on:

        Great provider relationships
        Our high-trust supplier relationships help us secure the right product volumes. Even at short notice.

        Our best price – guaranteed
        We value long-term relationships over short-term profit, so you’ll always get our best price.

        Forecasting customer use
        Customer forecast analysis helps ensure we can fulfil orders with the option to adjust product and volume as needed.

        An ever-expanding range
        We regularly add alternative products so the security of our supply is constantly improving.  

        Customer-focused supply
        Whether we provide 20%, 50% or 100% of your supply, we always put the work in.

        Here for the long-term
        As a key part of the Rakem Group’s future, we’re well backed and here for the long-haul.

        Flexible lead times
        Most in-stock orders placed on a Monday are delivered by Friday.


        Can you help us formulate our product to meet or beat certain performance criteria?

        Our fantastic technical team has all the know-how and experience – plus state-of-the-art, in-house laboratories – to help you. Just get in touch and one of the team will contact you.

        Can Cemkem conduct raw material and finished goods comparative testing?

        We sure can. Our technical team regularly does this as well as testing materials provided by our customers and our other providers.

        Can Cemkem evaluate my screeds, mortar, render, tile adhesive or self-levelling underlayment?

        Yes – our dedicated lab has a wide range of specialist equipment to support these applications and a whole lot more..

        Can Cemkem help me develop a new product

        Our team is highly experienced in formulating a wide range of construction products from tile adhesives to tanking membranes.

        How can I get in touch?

        Just give us a call on 0161 762 0044 or drop an email to and one of our friendly team will be in touch.

        How can I request a sample?

        For a sample, email We’ll respond within 48 hours.

        How can I find you?

        You’ll find us at Cemkem, Peel House, Wellington Street, Bury, BL8 2BD. Our facilities are relatively new so Google Maps takes you to our old HQ. But don’t worry, everything’s on the same street. Just keep going for around 100 feet until you pass the gates. Then turn right and you’ll see the barriers. Give us a buzz and we’ll welcome you in. If you’re still struggling call us on 0161 762 0044.

        How can I stay in touch?

        Connect with us on LinkedIn to stay up to date with our latest news, products and technical developments.

        Latest news

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