Outsourced minerals and processing plant operations and maintenance specialist Minopex has embarked on a major new growth and diversification strategy, aligned with sister company DRA, that will see the company “double the value of the business” by 2020″, writes Laura Cornish.
Since its establishment 20 years ago, Minopex has established itself as a leading specialist in the field of outsourced operation and maintenance of metals and minerals processing facilities.
The company currently operates and maintains 15 minerals processing plants in the coal, platinum, gold, iron ore, phosphate, magnetite and diamond industries in South Africa, Lesotho, Botswana, Mozambique, Tanzania and Saudi Arabia.
DRA’s appointment of Wray Carvelas as CEO in October 2016 has resulted in some exciting changes for the company and all its divisions, including Minopex. A new management structure, incorporating a global executive team appointment to drive the business globally, alongside a new major shareholder, will thrust the companies into a new ear of growth with a focus on emerging new business strengths and an expanding footprint across the globe. “This has culminated in a 2020 strategic vision that will double the value of all DRA divisions and in doing so deliver significant return on investment,” says Minopex Executive Vice President Gerhard Hendriksz.
Having revised its own strategy and how best to achieve its new target in November last year, Minopex is ready to take its core competency and skills sets to the world – from Africa and the Middle East to Australasia and the Americas (including Canada).
“We have subsequently re-established out own management structure to ensure we deliver on the Group’s commitments and expectations”, Hendriksz explains. The Minopex management team now incorporates a new approach, a South Africa and Africa-focused executive group and and international executive group.
The business development approach has also been split into two different areas – one that focuses on maintaining and building on existing business (mainly in South Africa and Africa, including Mozambique, Tanzania, Botswana and Lesotho) and the other focused on new growth. “In December last year we successfully registered an office in Saudi Arabia under the DRA name. It incorporates two licenses – operations and maintenance, and design and construction. This will open new doors and position us to grow our business in the Middle East region.
Speaking more in-depth about Minopex’s growth strategy, Hendriksz outlines key objectives which the company will focus on over the next three years, and beyond.
Enhancing Existing Business Excellence
Minopex has built long standing relationships with its clients and as much as the company is in the process of expansion and growth, it remains a top priority to nurture its client relationship and not neglect its existing clients.
“As mentioned, we want to maintain our current business in areas where we are well known and grown these existing businesses further as well,” he notes. On the back of this focus, the company is also looking to expand its engineering (workshop) and laboratory capabilities – or basically replicate its Ensermo business model. Situated in Mozambique, Ensermo was established to further develop and foster Minopex’ long-term presence in the country. Operating our of a locally based workshop in the Tete province, Enermo provides quality engineering services to mines and industries in Mozambique, including ports, harbours, steel works and production facilities.
It’s capabilities expand a full array of engineering services as and when clients need them, including motor rewinds, civil construction, pipe installations, steel fabrications and analysis activities and pump refurbishment.
“There is a strong market gap for these services and skills in various African territories and we are intent on establishing similar commercial entities to service various mines in specific countries and areas.”
Diversification Reduces Risk
With a variety of solid ambitions in play, Minopex is also looking to develop its core competency operations and maintenance strength outside of the minerals sector to diversify its risk profile. “We have identified the water, agriculture and energy sectors as lucrative new business areas to explore and demonstrate how we can apply our skills sets to these new industries. We will further look to diversify our production and manufacturing facilities as well.”
Growing in Australasia and Americas regions (and Europe as well) is a priority that will be delivered fastest through partnership establishments with local specialists – and through DRA a number of joint venture agreements in Australia have already been secured.
“There are a vast number of junior mining companies in need of these outsourced skills and capabilities to quickly deliver minerals processing projects, we believe the opportunities in these territories are plentiful. Most importantly, the establishment of relationships in Australia, America’s and Canada will provide quick access to new project work in Africa as well,” Hendriksz highlights.
“And because our capabilities are based in South Africa, we are able to offer a very cash competitive, Rand-based costing model when moving east and west of our borders.”