Energising Secure Power
Writer: Phoebe Calver
Project Manager: Donovan Smith
Master Power Technologies (MPT) has grown exponentially from a static UPS (uninterruptable power supply) Company, to a complete secure power supplier also offering complete modular data centre infrastructure, obtaining numerous awards on its climb to the top of the industry.
The Company is a specialist in the supply, installation and after-sales service of a widespread selection of engineered secure power solutions; all of which range from modular data space solutions control energy management systems.
Through careful selection over time, taking into consideration availability of support in the final country of installation, MPT has collated a selection of OEM partners – Bergvik and Stamford among them – to continue building a progressive Company portfolio.
Menno Parsons, Founder and Director of Master Power Technologies noticed the growing need for secure power solutions to support IT-dependent business and processes industries while working for Siemens’ UPS division. Shortly afterwards Parsons established Master Guard (Pty) Ltd in 1999 as an independent South African enterprise.
“We initially focused on critical power applications for telecommunication, banking and industry,” explains Parsons. “Every time the Company went to supply or service a UPS, the customer would enquire about the possibility of generator services at the same time.
“Both of these products work hand-in-hand, which is why we decided to get our Generator Division of Master Guard up and running as quickly as possible.”
Having built a successful base for the Company focused on its UPS and generator services, 2004 brought about pivotal structural changes for Master Power. Seeing growing demands in the data centre market, Parsons took his understanding of the need for faster deployment of the ‘final solution’ and with that launched the Company’s first modular date centre solution.
Parsons continues: “Our energy centre solution had already been developed; therefore adding the data centre services gave MPT a complete turnkey solution for the faster deployment of complete date centre infrastructure.”
As is often the case with expansion into new markets for a Company, it quickly became evident to Master Power that its customers still had needs which were not currently being met. In response, the Company opened the Life.Net remote monitoring centre, giving Master Power the ability to closely monitor each customer’s critical equipment and data centre environment.
“For our customers, we were able to act as a monitor and advisory service on their equipment efficiencies, services and maintenance and when breakdowns occurred, we had the ability to get the right technicians on site before most employees were even aware of an issue,” describes Parsons. “This enabled the customers to focus on their business while we took care of the rest, saving them time and money.”
It is the Company’s dedication to tackling customers’ needs head-on that has led to Master Power receiving numerous accolades, beginning in 2011 when Frost & Sullivan awarded the first of many awards, this time being the UPS customer service leadership award.
Frost & Sullivan acknowledge and reward companies across 40 countries, all of which are operating in a range of regional and global markets for superior leadership, technological innovation, customer service and strategic product development.
Parsons affirms: “Receiving this award made us very proud and it demonstrated that not only can we supply superior solutions for our customers’ applications, but we can support and service them with that same dedication and passion.”
2011 also brought about the celebration of Master Power branch openings in both Durban and Cape Town, enabling the Company to provide better service for its customers. Both branches were initially opened to serve the purpose of assisting with the rollout of projects and servicing, but soon developed self-sufficient sales functions.
Another big win for Master Power arrived in 2014, again from Frost & Sullivan, this time for South African Data Centre Infrastructure Management Technology Leadership.
“This award demonstrates our ability to create a competitive advantage in our modular data centres, through the R&D products which integrate all the elements of the infrastructure equipment and environment into one transparent solution,” continues Parsons. “Our integrated, intelligent remote monitoring gave the customers not only the initial product, but also transparency into its operation and peace of mind knowing people with the right skill-set are looking after their operations.”
The most recent award received from Frost & Sullivan arrived in 2016 for the sub-Saharan African Modular Data Centre Company of the Year. A major factor in Master Power obtaining this award was its ability to expand on its competitive advantage in creating a complete solution, by introducing a smart phone application which allows customers to monitor their secure power and data centre solutions from anywhere around the world.
In-keeping with its ability to stay up-to-date with market demands, Master Power has paid particular attention to the rapidly growing demand for data centres. Modern day customers are looking for solutions which can quickly be implemented as their business grows, giving them better control of their invested capital.
“The option to work with modular data centres was one that appealed to us when studying our market; they offer faster deployment than traditional brick and mortar data centres,” Parsons claims. “As you grow and need more space, it is very simple to add another module; particularly in the African market where building materials are often either not available or of poor quality.
“Keen to reduce data centre completion times and efficiency, the modules are shipped from our factories and therefore only limited plinths and foundations are needed from a civil works perspective. These limited works can be carried out while the modules are being made in our factories, typically reducing site data centre completion by 50 percent.”
Innovation has been central to the success of Master Power, combined simply with the ability to listen to customer demands. It is a point of pride at the Company to use the problems customers put forward as a challenge for the team to overcome, either finding an existing solution that resolves the problem affordably, or alternatively get the R&D team in to develop a solution from scratch.
This is a very stringent process and reason for the Company’s numerous awards, and subsequently, when products fall short of meeting the exact function needed to implement the perfect solution, it is back to the drawing board.
“What really makes a difference is our focus on giving our customers turnkey solutions which provides them with technologies that multiple suppliers would battle to offer,” adds Parsons. “In offering the latest in efficiencies compounded by completely integrating the solutions into a transparent in-house platform, the customer is always fully aware of what is happening with their products and services.
“Then not only will we monitor the site for the customer, but also carry out reporting and maintenance functions to ensure they continue to get value for money, only made possible by the fact we have our own internal facilities enabling us to design and manufacture everything in-house with no sub-contractors.”
With a renowned engineering team along with project management and installation teams, and R&D to develop as and when they are required, Master Power Technologies is at the top of its game in the industry.
Parsons concludes: “We are small enough to care and big enough to take the required action when our customers need us most. It is our hope for the future to not only have grown in size but also have developed the strongest R&D department in the industry.
“The ideal position moving forward is for our competition to always be attempting to catch up with us in efforts to close the gap we have created with our in-house R&D products, and for our customers to firmly say there is no alternative in the market.”