Issue 28

Royal Bafokeng Platinum

More Than MiningWriter: Matthew StaffProject Manager: Arron Rampling Royal Bafokeng Platinum (RBPlat) is affirming its position as one of South Africa’s leading mining operators through a proactive and concerted strategy to expand its influence across the Rustenberg area.Located in the North West province of the country, the Company has built a largely unrivalled reputation and prominence within the sector, mining platinum group metals (PGMs) in the Merensky and UG2 reefs on the Boschkoppie, Styldrift and Frischgewaagd farms in the region. However, despite operating at designed levels of production and alongside some of the largest businesses in the industry, RBPlat refuses to rest on its laurels and is subsequently embarking on a new and exciting phase of development.Incepted in 1999 as a black-owned and controlled entity under a Royal Bafokeng Holdings and Anglo American Platinum joint venture, the Royal Bafokeng Nation subsidiary first rose to notoriety through its role in the Bafokeng Rasimone Platinum Mine (BRPM) which produced its first platinum concentrate in that year and still forms a pivotal facet of RBPlat’s operations to this day.Simmering beneath the surface of the processes that the Company has become so reputed for carrying out over the years though, is a philosophy and methodology which drives all progress strived for across the organisation.“Starting with the ‘why’ and not the ‘what’ is very important when talking about Royal Bafokeng Platinum,” says the Company’s Executive Head of Operations, Neil Carr. “When you talk about RBPlat, you have to talk about its four pillars of strategy: towards operational excellence; flexibility of operations, organic

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Spar Zimbabwe

Customer Satisfaction Drives Spar PassionWriter: Matthew StaffProject Manager: Callum PhilpWith more than 12,000 stores around the globe, the SPAR name is one of the most recognisable in the retail world; a cachet that Zimbabwe’s arm is leveraging to full effect in becoming the most sough-after store in the country.With a presence across four continents and more than 35 countries, the reputation and notoriety are firmly in place in establishing a concerted influence on individual markets, but this isn’t to say that the Group doesn’t diversify to remain relevant in each operating country.It has been an adherence to local consumer trends, market conditions and indigenous produce which has endeared SPAR to the Zimbabwean public since the mid-1960s.Expanding and developing amid the wider country’s own progression, SPAR’s core attributes have really come into their own in recent years, with industry uptake and customer demand much more conducive to the Company’s primary vision; “To be the most exciting, innovative and sought-after retail brand in Zimbabwe”.Continuous improvementOperating more than 100 stores 12 months ago across its SPAR, SPAR Express and SaveMor platforms, the subsequent year has comprised a three-pronged strategy, in line with its main continuous improvement ethos, to introduce more stores, diversify its products and to introduce new ideas and technologies to the industry at large.The former is a continuation of an expansion that has taken place since SPAR’s inception in the country, as the Company stated last year: “At SPAR we are committed to developing the SPAR business by offering stores with modern layouts and the promise of

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Varichem Pharmaceuticals

Committed to Cost-Effective HealthcareWriter: Emily JarvisProject Manager: Eddie ClintonEstablished in 1985 as a wholly Zimbabwean, privately-owned company, Varichem Pharmaceuticals manufactures and markets a wide range of quality general pharma and pharma-related products sold both locally and to Zimbabwe’s neighbouring countries.Becoming the first indigenous African company to attain a World Health Organisation (WHO) prequalification in 2010, Varichem aim to address the underwhelming awareness of the critical need for reliable and cost-effective healthcare products that are often seriously lacking in the delivery of medical care in Zimbabwe, a country typically dominated by multinational pharma companies. “The entrance of Varichem into the healthcare business signalled a new era in Zimbabwe’s pharmaceutical market. In line with this, we have met the WHO prequalification quality standards at our manufacturing plant and two of our ARVs (Antiretroviral Drugs) – Stalanev 30 and Varivar – have also been prequalified,” explained the Company. The attainment of the WHO prequalification has opened up opportunities in the international market for Varichem, including the opportunity to work with global non-profit organisations such as PEPFAR (The US President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief), Clinton Foundation and other like-minded organisations.Equipped with a vision to be the preferred supplier for pharma products in Zimbabwe, Varichem aims to create value for its shareholders through the provision of quality healthcare products and solutions for the people of Africa and beyond. Combined with a concerted focus on sustainability and health and safety, the Company endeavours to carry out operations in an environmentally friendly manner, resulting in minimal impact on the planet.“Protection of the environment

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eThekwini Municipality

A Smart and Caring CityWriter: Matthew StaffProject Manager: Nick Norris As one of the most significant regions of, historically, Africa’s most economically significant country, eThekwini Municipality in South Africa continues to work towards its 2030 vision of becoming the most caring and liveable city in the country.Targeting a Durban city which enables all citizens to live together in harmony, the organisational structure working tirelessly behind the scenes tackles a plethora of cultural, industrial, social, economical and political challenges each and every day to veer the municipality closer to this ideal in the KwaZulu-Natal province.As the third largest city in the country, comprising a population of more than three million people, it is largely acknowledged for housing the best managed and busiest port on the continent, and is subsequently a tourism hub thanks to its climate and coastline also.This takes the personnel count considerably higher for a local government which has far more than general upkeep to address on an annual basis.Spanning key areas of tourism, the environment, community involvement, housing, sustainability, public services, pensions, energy, technology and engineering, transport, health, leisure, safety and sanitation; dropping the ball even slightly across any of these facets would be disastrous for a city with such high aspirations.“We are a diverse African city that is focused on citywide investment, growing our economy and creating a better quality of life. In Durban we play hard and we work hard,” the Municipality stated. “It’s not a coincidence that we attract so many local and international tourists on a daily basis. We are a

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Lobels Bread : Baking on Demand

As one of the country’s largest and oldest food producers, Lobels has an exciting past which was the result of strategic investments that recognised the importance and demand for the final product.

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Boxmore Packaging

Set Apart by Innovation and TechnologyWriter: Emily JarvisProject Manager: Ben WiggerBoxmore Packaging is one of South Africa’s most diverse players plastic packaging, supplying bottles, plastic containers, jars and closures to the beverage, pharmaceutical, home care and personal care industries for the past 20 years. A South African owned and operated company since1995, Boxmore has strategically positioned its operations - with manufacturing facilities in Harrismith, Johannesburg and Cape Town – so as to be in the best geographic location possible to service the local market with an ever-increasing array of products.“Our manufacturing footprint puts us in the ideal position to supply not only South Africa, but the region as a whole,” the Company added.Complimented by PET pre-form production facilities in Port Louis, Mauritius and Lusaka, Zambia, Boxmore has a significant export business that qualifies under a number of regional trade groups including SADC, COI and COMESA. From advising on the design and manufacture of PET bottles, recommending the most suitable solution from its range of pre-forms and closures, or developing a customised solution for home and personal care, Boxmore displays unrivalled expertise in the African packaging industry.“In support of this, globally recognised companies such as Husky, Kortec, Sidel, Engel, Aioki, CSI (Closure Systems International) and Andre Zalkin are all important partners who provide us with the latest technological capabilities in the manufacture of packaging. For example, our Boxmore Plastics division has become internationally renowned for the development of multi-layer barrier solutions, including overseeing the first commercial production of recyclable Poly Glycolic (PGA) barrier pre-forms,” said the Company.Although

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First Reinsurance Brokers Ltd

Transforming Africa’s Reinsurance LandscapeWriter: Emily JarvisProject Manager: Callum Philp First Reinsurance Brokers Ltd (FirstRe) was incorporated in 1993 and licensed by the Insurance Commissioner as the first locally-owned Kenyan reinsurance broker to transact reinsurance broking services. During the renewal of reinsurance treaties for the year 1994 in the Kenyan Market, FirstRe managed to book its first business. Since then, there was no looking back.The Company was established on the backdrop of a quest to help the African insurance industry enhance technical capacity in both the insurance and reinsurance sectors. Prior to the establishment of FirstRe, the majority of reinsurance brokerage services for the region’s industry were done by foreign brokers, either from the UK market or Asia, with particular interest from India.FirstRe was the first to set up shop in the local reinsurance market in Nairobi, Kenya. Ordinarily, being a first-mover would prove advantageous in the early stages; already ahead of the competition in terms of superior brand recognition and customer loyalty. “However, due to many foreign briefcase reinsurance brokers from Europe and Asia, early business was lost as cedants were unaware and uneducated in terms of the value-add services that could come from a local reinsurance broker. At this time, there was also the issue of local outfit mistrust and the attitude that nothing good could come from a local company,” further explains Group Managing Director, Mrs Jacinta Karita. “FirstRe had to prove itself capable of the level of technical knowledge, professionalism, availability and dedicated service delivery that had previously only been associated with international business; then

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Cavmont Bank

Bringing International Standards to ZambiaWriter: Emily JarvisProject Manager: Callum PhilpEmerging technology trends in Zambia’s commercial banking scene have dictated the growing uptake of, and appreciation for, financial services in one of the continent’s key growth markets. Cavmont Bank has made every effort to be at the forefront of this, witnessing unprecedented growth in the past two years, actualised by major investments in technology and an increase of geographic coverage to include 19 branches across Lusaka, Chingola, Ndola, Kitwe, Chililabombwe, Mbala, Mpulungu, Solwezi, Chipata, Kasama, Mansa, Mwense and Mufumbwe. The Bank now has more than 50,000 clients and 240 employees who are eager to take Cavmont to the next level.Following a merger between Cavmont Merchant Bank Ltd and New Capital Bank Plc in 2004, and the later merger with Capricorn Holdings in 2008, Cavmont Bank has grown its presence as a commercial bank in Zambia known for its ability to understand the local market opportunities and create tailored solutions for the corporate and commercial spheres based on this.Across the past two decades, Cavmont has been increasing its local capacities and product offering in order to deliver as simpler package as possible to Zambian people. “Our unparalleled speed to market makes us highly competitive, and we are broadly respected for this. Not only have we succeeded in creating financial products that are easy to understand, but after two decades of brand loyalty, our customers recognise our ability to operate in the country,” says Charles Carey, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Cavmont Bank.New technologyIncreasing its customer channels and distribution

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Renico Group Of Companies

Fulfilling Industry and Customer NeedsWriter: Emily JarvisProject Manager: Stuart Parker Under the forward-thinking leadership of Nico Louw, the Renico Group of Companies (Renico) – including Renico Plant Hire, Renico Construction, Renico Quarrying & Crushing and Renico Earthworks & Civils - have been at the forefront of earthmoving equipment hire in South Africa since inception in 1998. With a fleet consisting of more than 300 pieces of large earthmoving equipment including; tractor loader backhoes (TLBs), crushers, excavators, loaders, tippers and other construction-related vehicles, Renico strives to be recognised in the industry as the premier plant hire company in the northwest area of Johannesburg.“TLBs are the most sought after piece of equipment by the construction industry. As such, Renico Plant Hire procured an additional 16 brand new CASE 570T’s in January of this year, bringing the total fleet to more than 40; making us owners of one of the biggest TLB fleet owners in South Africa,” the Group said in a recent interview.With standout company features including a fanatical concern for customer’s needs and in depth expertise from management right through the supply chain, Renico demonstrates its operational excellence and willingness to work with industry professionals to help support the completion of a high quality end product.“Equipment is deployed on various sites not only in the Reef, but we have now enhanced presence in at least four other provinces around the country at any given time,” highlighted the Company. The Group works with a wide range of clients, from large construction companies to small businesses who receive a tailored,

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Lord Trust Developers

Sustainable Proposition from Indigenous Developers Writer: Emily JarvisProject Manager: Stuart Parker Today’s industry giants in distribution and manufacturing require considerably larger facilities, higher clear heights, good turning circles, sizeable parking areas and bigger storage capacities than 10 years ago; while still maintaining a concerted focus on security and location. Situated in the Chloorkop Township in Gauteng, South Africa, Lords View Industrial Park has worked hard to provide its answer to these changes by bringing international standards to the South African market. “We are looking to bring the latest and greatest industrial township to South African industry, utilising European standards to draw in both multinational and indigenous companies seeking a modern, energy efficient industrial stand with state-of-the-art FTTB (fibre-to-the-business) and sustainability at its heart,” says Warwick Lord, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Lord Trust Developers.Lord Trust Developers (Pty) Ltd was established in 2007 to oversee and develop the environmentally friendly and eco-sensitive Lords View Industrial Park (Lords View) and to house the Lord Trust’s land developments division. The Trust owns operating assets in The Echo Group, a company that manufactures hollow-core flooring solutions and has diversified its offering to work with Lord Trust Developers and Enviroserv to build an on-site municipal waste-to-energy facility that will, once developed, provide for the whole industrial park.“Before purchasing the land, three crucial factors had to be considered during a 12 month due diligence period: the availability of electricity, an assessment of sufficient road infrastructure and securing environmental approval. When we bought the land, the price was good. We bought considerably more than was

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Flame Group Of Companies

Taking Pride in ProjectsWriter: Matthew StaffProject Manager: Stuart Parker After enjoying unprecedented success in Zambia throughout its first four years of operation, Flame has spent the subsequent six diversifying, innovating and expanding as it looks to cement its status as one of the country’s leading market players.Incepted in the country in 2006, the aim of the Group of Companies was to replicate its reputed Egyptian operations to a relatively traditional and slow-moving market; a plan which came to fruition far quicker than the organisation, and its Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Mohamed Salama could have anticipated.“The opportunity in Zambia arose from the idea that we could transfer skills capacity from Egyptian artisans to local labour here, and in 2006 we completed our first building, Finsbury Park,” he recalls. “Before then, everyone was building to very traditional brick and mortar methods without much concept of aesthetics or new building materials that were available internationally.“We saw this as an advantage in setting up a construction company in Zambia, and after one project, everyone was really amazed by the quality of our workmanship.”Placing concerted emphasis on the design and build approach in the early days, Flame’s reputation quickly grew in the country; being earmarked for 13 new contracts by the time it had finished its first project.The double-edged sword of success even became too much by 2010 as demand exceeded resources, but following a subsequent stabilisation since 2012, the Company can now look back at an initial nine years of operations which has seen the business rise from zero to $180

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Spencon Holdings Ltd

Constructing Flexibility Across BordersWriter: Matthew StaffProject Manager: Stuart Parker Spencon has defied numerous regional and industrial challenges since its inception in 1979 to expand its extensive portfolio of infrastructure projects to the majority of East Africa.Specialised in the construction of water supply and sewage systems, as well as civil works and power lines across the region, the Company now comprises four regional offices as evidence of its rapid growth over the decades.Headquartered in Nairobi, its 200-plus projects have bridged not only Kenya, but also Uganda, Tanzania, Zambia, Malawi, Mozambique and South Sudan; making the business one of the most widespread in the local sector.This isn’t to say that the business has been spread too thinly, however, with Spencon growing methodically and proactively over the years alongside carefully selected strategic partners; all of which has led to the most expansive decade in its history since the turn of the century, which has incorporated the majority of its East African migration through the delivery of exciting infrastructure projects.“Our focus has always been significant infrastructure projects, not only because of the scale of opportunity available but also to fulfil our mission of providing innovative engineering solutions that enhance the quality of life in East Africa,” says the Company’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Andrew Ross. “We are incredibly proud of our track record in implementing successful infrastructure projects and continuously strive to build upon this.”Decades of experienceTo compound this adherence to continuous improvement, much of Spencon’s recent development has surrounded the refinement of its employment structure, from the top down.Initially, this

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Betts Townsend

Investing from the Ground-UpWriter: Emily JarvisProject Manager: Stuart Parker Driven by a strong entrepreneurial spirit and results-orientated family culture, Betts Townsend has spent a significant amount of time working on how it is perceived as a business; while allowing its experience level and portfolio of large scale projects to speak for itself.Incepted by Howard Betts 20 years ago, a merger was actualised as a result of joint interests between Betts Projects and well regarded project management guru, John Townsend. “Betts Townsend was subsequently formed with a concerted focus on strengthening the initial backbone of the company by investing in training both our general staff and project managers to be the best they can be,” highlights Michael Taylor, Managing Director of Betts Townsends’ African Interest.Growing from a simple installation company over the course of the first decade of business, Betts Townsend quickly progressed into a substantial construction business looking to take advantage of South Africa’s infrastructure trends, particularly in the retail and hospitality sectors. Post 2010 - since the World Cup infrastructure growth injection - the South African-based Company has been looking beyond the borders as part of its latest business development strategy: to capitalise on economic growth in East Africa after weathering the storm of time and capitalising on the emerging middle class movement.“Depreciation of the rand had been a concern. However, Africa as a continent remains one of the world’s biggest growth markets; even after the recent GDP drop in South Africa. Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania are still exhibiting some of the highest GDP rates globally

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Motheo Construction Group

Promoting Economic Empowerment through Low-Income HousingWriter: Emily JarvisProject Manager: Stuart Parker Motheo Construction began as one woman’s ambition to empower South African people through the provision of better living conditions; providing ordinary people with a means to escape poverty. Now with an order book of more than 1.3 billion rand and around 80,000 houses in its portfolio, the Group hopes to maintain growth levels with blue-sky thinking and a keen focus on black economic empowerment targets; placing gender equality at the forefront of its activities. What began as a hobby on the side while running a private medical practice in Johannesburg in 1996, Motheo Construction Group CEO, Dr Thandi Ndlovu identified that with better living conditions came a better standard of healthcare for South Africans. When the South African government instated the Housing Act of 1996, shortly followed by the establishment of South Africa’s Housing Development Board, Dr Ndlovu was able to facilitate sustainable housing development to fulfil the basic human need for housing. “The Act gave the funding required for low income housing in the Mpumalanga province, and what started as six projects began to grow new wings and we were able to construct residences of higher quality and consistent standard over a wider geography,” says Tim Potter, part-Owner and Director of Motheo Construction Group.In 1998, Chris Cudmore and Tim Potter entered into a joint venture with Dr Ndlovu and, given the joint interest in social housing, she sold her medical practice to her partner and Motheo Construction Group was subsequently formed in 2007. “Chris Cudmore and

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Airtel Seychelles

Driving innovation, Affordability and ServiceWriter: Emily JarvisProject Manager: Donovan Smith Airtel’s operations in Seychelles represent a significant number of Airtel and industry firsts. As the first venture into Africa 16 years ago, the Company has experienced double-digit growth year-on-year even through tough economic times. Witnessing vast technological improvements and an ever-increasing mobile penetration rate - which currently stands at well over 150 percent - Airtel Seychelles has taken advantage of industry trends and quickly adopted 4G, becoming both the first 4G African venture for Bharti Airtel Group, and the first commercial LTE network in the country. “The service is a state-of-the-art network based on FDD-LTE, making Seychelles among the first countries in Sub-Saharan Africa to commercially deploy this cutting-edge technology,” reasons Managing Director, Amadou Mahamat Dina.Phase one of the 4G network rollout covered 10,000 LTE subscribers and this month the second phase was completed; Amadou Dina further details: “Initially, 4G coverage was available in urbanised and key areas of the country; available in corporate offices and the airport for example. As of May 2015, we have added 15 additional sites in phase two of the project.”By the end of the year, Airtel Seychelles hopes to provide 70-80 percent of Mahé, Praslin and La Digue with high-speed 4G technology. “The 4G network was launched by the Vice President of Seychelles, Danny Faure, which demonstrates just how deeply rooted and valued the Airtel brand is in Seychelles. Mobile data usage has currently only reached 25 percent in the country therefore, the market holds amply opportunity for Airtel to grow,”

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Konkola Copper Mines

Zambia’s Copperbelt LeadersWriter: Emily JarvisProject Manager: Arron Rampling Copper mining has been a significant contributor to Zambia’s GDP for close to a century, with experts estimating at that the sector is responsible for at least 12 percent of the country’s business; therefore the sector is of historical importance for the country. Since privatisation of parastatal companies in March 2000, Konkola Copper Mines (KCM) has been able to grow its already substantial mining assets, with the help of foreign direct investment (FDI) and support from government shareholders ZCCM-IH and ZCI.In 2004, Vendanta Resources, a UK based Company, bought a 51 percent share in KCM, further increasing this to 79.4 percent in 2008. “Not only did this increase our confidence, but we were able to grow our operations with new found vigour, investing over US$2.9 billion in upgrading equipment, building new facilities and expanding capacities,” says David Paterson, Vice President of Local Economic Development at Konkola Copper Mines.“These investments increased the life of the mines by more than 25 years, allowing us to retain our position as one of the largest, fully integrated mining bodies on the continent,” he adds.Economic circumstanceFrom its three mines – Konkola, Nchanga and Nampundwe – KCM currently produces 140,000 tonnes of copper per annum. “At Konkola, we are targeting 3.5 percent growth this year and we are putting all our energies into achieving a higher standard of operational efficiency and more stringent safety practices across these three mining operations,” states Paterson.Since the economic highs of 2010 - where Zambia saw a 50 percent rise

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