Market Evolution Driven by Diversification

Market Evolution Driven by Diversification

Since its establishment 20 years ago after identifying a gap in the industry trend for outsourcing the operational aspects of minerals processing, Minopex has grown to become a leading specialist in the field of outsourced operation and maintenance of metals and minerals processing facilities in the coal, platinum, gold, iron ore, chromite and diamond industries,” explains Rafael Abela, business development director.

Minopex is internationally acknowledged for its quality service and high standards. “We currently operate and maintain 14 minerals processing plants for our clients –
13 of which are in the African countries of Lesotho, Botswana, South Africa and Tanzania, with an international client in Saudi Arabia,” states Minopex business development executive Renira Reddy.

While larger mining companies operate their process plants on a traditional owner/operator basis, many juniors still prefer to contract out the operation of their mines as it eliminates unforeseen costs and secures proven skills, technologies and associated systems that they would not have access to otherwise and derisks the project.

It is for this reason that Minopex plans to add further value to its client’s operations. “By diversifying our service offering, we will, in turn, enhance our overall service offering to our clients, not only within their minerals processing plant, but throughout their mining value chain,” says Reddy.

Minopex has worked tirelessly over the past two decades to diversify itself into several divisions – each specialising in a field which complements the Minopex service offering. It is this continued diversification that enables the company to provide its clients with a holistic service offering, and is also what sets it head and shoulders above its competition.


Having originally established the company in South Africa and as a result of growing interest throughout southern Africa, Minopex established Minopex Lesotho, Minopex Botswana and Minopex Mozambique to overcome cross-border challenges and ensure smooth operations in these countries.

“This first step towards growing and diversifying provided clients with the full Minopex quality service offering, with the added advantage of being localised and therefore adapted to each country’s specific regulations, in terms of labour and mining and other governing laws,” highlights Abela.


Minopex acquired Quality Laboratory Services (QLS) to offer specialised laboratory services and analytical facilities to various industries. The range of expertise offered by QLS encompasses everything from mineral samples, to waste water and potable water treatment, through to microbiological analysis. QLS has a containerised laboratory based in Tanzania which services the surrounding areas professionally and efficiently, which are both SANAS 17025 accredited laboratories.

QLS processes over 9 000 samples a month with a turnaround time of less than 24 hours on most samples.


At the heart of Minopex’s reputation for excellence, lies a team of highly qualified and expertly skilled engineers.

“Through Ensersa, Minopex aims to provide clients with a team of experts and equipment for planned and unplanned maintenance shut downs, emergency breakdown support and engineering commissioning, anytime and anywhere,” says Reddy.


Operating out of a locally based workshop, Ensermo was established in order to provide quality engineering services to mines and industries in Mozambique including ports, harbours, steel works and production facilities. The workshop has the capacity to produce up to 200t of steel fabrication each month.

“All engineers are highly trained and expertly qualified to deliver on all client needs in an efficient manner,” says Abela. Ensermo has a very simple philosophy: all engineering solutions are tailored to each individual client’s needs. Ensermo’s capabilities expand a full array of engineering services as and when clients need them, from upgrading to fabrication of steel structures.


M&E Plant – the mobile equipment division of Minopex – manages and maintains internal mobile plant equipment and yellow metal at all existing Minopex sites, as well as the provision of contract hire to external clients who require plant for material handling, load and haul operations and construction.

“The primary objective of M&E Plant is to extend Minopex’s service offering on existing contracts and clients to include the supply of heavy plant and equipment as required with a quality cost efficient support team,” highlights Reddy.

Its workshop handles complete refurbishments and repairs including routine maintenance and inspections, and replacement of major components. M&E Plant machine operators and mechanics, as well as field service technicians, receive regular training from OEM suppliers and are tested continuously to maintain a standard of excellence.


Minopex’s dedicated specialised work and training (SWAT) teams will assist with the efficient ramp up and commissioning to nameplate capacity of any minerals processing plant. Whether a Greenfield or Brownfield operation, the Minopex SWAT teams are considered unrivalled in turning operations around in the quickest, most efficient and most cost effective way possible.

With operating experience covering various commodities including coal, platinum, diamonds, iron ore and gold, the SWAT teams have every aspect of commissioning minerals processing plants covered.

“The teams are made up as per plant requirements. These often include shift superintendents, senior process operators and control room operators, who are tasked with bringing a recently constructed plant into production, while the client may still be training the personnel,” Reddy adds.

Minopex can reduce costs, reduce business risk and improve YOUR productivity. Some of the projects that Minopex’s SWAT teams have assisted in commissioning include:

  • Assmang’s Khumani iron ore project;
  • Glencore’s Tweefontein coal project;
  • South32’s Douglas-Middelburg Optimisation (DMO) project;
  • Randgold Resources’ Kibali and Tongon gold projects;
  • Asanko Gold’s Asanko gold project;
  • Vale’s Moatize Phase II coal project; and Aureus Mining’s New Liberty gold project.


Outside South Africa, Minopex operates as DRA Operations, a subsidiary of DRA Global – a leading engineering design and construction specialist of minerals processing facilities in the mining industry.

DRA Operations’ bespoke services enable new processing plants to reduce the up-front costs of equipment and engineering facilities and to minimise their operating costs. DRA Operations strives to ensure continuity in production, maintain excellence despite exceptional conditions and meet the financial and quality goals of its contracts.

DRA Operations’ services include:

  • All of Minopex’s offering;
  • Specialised engineering services;
  • Maintenance;
  • Small engineering projects;
  • Condition monitoring; and
  • Mobile field services.
Download the full story from Mining Elites in Africa