27.11.2013 Aufrufe

AFRICA outlook

It’s that time of year again where we prepare for the visit of the man in the red suit, power shortages (if you’re in South Africa and have to rely on Eskom), the peak of summer, and of course the annual shutdowns. It’s also that time where you refl ect on the past year, 12 months in which a meteor exploded over Russia, a new Pope was appointed and of course Edward Snowden blew the lid on a mass U.S. surveillance operation, a story that continues to run.

It’s that time of year again
where we prepare for the
visit of the man in the red suit,
power shortages (if you’re
in South Africa and have to
rely on Eskom), the peak of
summer, and of course the
annual shutdowns. It’s also that
time where you refl ect on the
past year, 12 months in which a
meteor exploded over Russia,
a new Pope was appointed and
of course Edward Snowden
blew the lid on a mass U.S.
surveillance operation, a story
that continues to run.


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Interview with fastjet

CEO Ed Winter



Unilever Food Solutions helps chefs all over the

world “serve tasty, wholesome meals that keep

guests coming back for more”



Saab grintek Defence is a

South African company with

a global reputation





Helios towers

Nigeria provides


tower sites for the

telecoms industry

in Nigeria


Mantrac Nigeria distributes and supports

the full range of Caterpillar construction

machines, power systems and materialhandling



WE Import & Distribute

the finest quality Italian products

into Africa

Mangiare Bene, Vivere Bene - eat well, live well

Contact Clifford Barratt, Managing Director

Email: Clifford@fratellifoods.co.za Website: www.fratellifoods.co.za

W E l C O M E

Reaching for African skies

It’s that time of year again

where we prepare for the

visit of the man in the red suit,

power shortages (if you’re

in South Africa and have to

rely on Eskom), the peak of

summer, and of course the

annual shutdowns. It’s also that

time where you reflect on the

past year, 12 months in which a

meteor exploded over Russia,

a new Pope was appointed and

of course Edward Snowden

blew the lid on a mass U.S.

surveillance operation, a story

that continues to run.

Our next issue will see us look back further on 2013 as well as look to

2014 and what we can expect by way of trends. But that’s next month

and for now we’ve many, many treats and you shouldn’t view this as

some sort of go-between.

first off, you’ll have noticed our cover story, an interview with

Ed Winter the CEO of fastjet, an ambitious company with a rather

ambitious plan to build Africa’s first pan-African low-cost airline. now

that’s quite the task but the former pilot who held senior roles at Ukbased

British Airways, easyJet and go has all the experience necessary

to pull it off. Learn more on page 10.

We also bring you the story of Unilever Food Solutions, the company

which helps chefs all over the

world “serve tasty, wholesome

meals that keep guests coming

back for more”, the story of Castrol

in South Africa, Mantrac in Nigeria

and Concord Cranes an ambitious

new South African crane hire

company, as well as discuss the

successes at Saab grintek Defence,

the winner of Best South African

Export Company at the inaugural

South African Premier Business

Awards earlier this year.

Ian Armitage

Editor, Outlook Publishing

Enjoy the magazine.


Editor: Ian Armitage



Production Manager: Clare Durrant



Sales Director: Nick Norris


Sales: Eddie Clinton


Sales: Donovan Smith


Projects Director: James Mitchell


Project Managers:

Sheridan Halls


Stuart Shirra


tom Cullum


Ben Wigger


Arron Rampling


Hal Hutchison



Finance Manager:

Suzanne Welsh


Office Administrator: Daniel george


MAGAZINE DESIGN: Optic Juice ltd

IMAGES: getty

DIGITAL & IT: Hamit Saka

HELPDESK: James leMay

Outlook Publishing

Managing Director: Ben Weaver


Chairman: Mark Weaver


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18 56

In this issue of Africa Outlook...




All the latest news from across Africa


Reaching for African skies

Fastjet’s CEO Ed Winter has become

something of an expert in overcoming

obstacles and shares his plans for low-cost travel

in Africa




Investment profile: Mozambique

Africa Outlook takes a closer look

at Mozambique’s business and

investment potential


G rowth on the menu

Unilever Food Solutions helps chefs

all over the world “serve tasty,

18 wholesome meals that keep guests

coming back for more”

A winning taste

for life

Symrise is a global supplier of

42 fragrances, flavorings, cosmetic

active ingredients, raw materials and

functional ingredients

G BF eyes African


Greenbelt Fertilisers, a 100 percent

48 subsidiary of CHC Commodities, plays

a major role in Africa’s farming community


R eaching new


In 2012 Investec facilitated a

52 transaction whereby Concord Cranes

Ltd became the holding company of Anglo-V3

Crane Hire and Elcon Crane Hire

P owering up

Mantrac Nigeria distributes and

supports the full range of Caterpillar

56 construction machines, power

systems and material-handling equipment


108 114


M oi Teaching and

Referral Hospital

Africa Outlook speaks to Dr

John Kibosia

4 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com


Association of

Kenya Insurers

Kenya’s insurance sector is growing. Industry

70 veteran Tom Gichuhi, the CEO of the Association of

Kenya Insurers, gives us his insight





P oised for growth

GA Insurance is a company poised for growth says

CEO Vijay Srivastava

M aintaining a niche focus

Altrisk is a specialist long term risk product

provider whose reputation has been built around

superior underwriting expertise


S outh Africa’s national

oil company

South Africa’s national oil company PetroSA

continues “to perform admirably”

R unning Smoothly

Castrol South Africa has been making oil since men

have been making cars



E xcelling on a

global stage

Saab Grintek Defence is a

114 South African company with a

global reputation

M anufacturing in

South Africa

Foreword by Coenraad

122 Bezuidenhout, Executive Director,

Manufacturing Circle

A frican ambition

Kansai Plascon is a company with

expansion on its mind. Already the

124 premier paint company in South

Africa, Plascon was purchased by Japanese

company Kansai in 2012



T he fabric of

a community

For South Africa’s Pep Clothing there

is more to life than loss or profit

F ull flush

Crystal Paper is recognised as being

the leading independent tissue paper

manufacturer in Africa




T owering above the rest

Helios Towers Nigeria provides fully-managed

tower sites for the telecoms industry in Nigeria


A clear winner

Elite Clearing and Forwarding (Pty) Ltd is an

expert international shipping company offering

comprehensive logistics and freight solutions

T he wings of East Africa

Meridiana Africa Airlines Limited, trading as Air

Uganda, is a privately owned airline founded in

2007 in Uganda



94 82





Property group

Attacq lists on JSE

Property group Attacq, which was

previously known as Atterbury

Investment Holdings, has listed

on the real estate holdings and

development sector of the main

board of the JSE.

Since its inception eight years ago,

the firm has delivered an average

compound annual return exceeding

20 percent.

Morne Wilken, Attacq CEO,

said: “Listing Attacq will create a

foundation to grow the business

further. It enables Attacq to access

capital efficiently, raise its profile and

expand its investor base, all of which

should enhance Attacq’s prospects.”

He added: “Attacq’s focus on

long-term sustainable capital

growth distinguishes it from other

JSE-listed property entities, such as

REITs that predominantly focus on

rental income distribution. When

considering Attacq’s listing, we

assessed the investor benefits of

various structures, including REITs.

But, our established structure

and business model of delivering

sustainable long-term capital

appreciation has proven successful

and delivered excellent results to our

investors. The timing of the listing

also places Attacq in an ideal position

to invest in excellent development

opportunities, especially those at

Waterfall Business Estate.”

Attacq’s assets comprise two

focus areas: investments and

developments. Its portfolio strategy

is to hold 65 percent investments and

35 percent developments to optimise

long-term sustainable capital growth,

enhance total returns to shareholders

and mitigate risk.

Wilken explained: “Our investment

in completed buildings provides stable

and growing income and balance sheet

strength to responsibly secure and

fund high-growth opportunities within

developments. In turn, the group’s

developments create a pipeline of highquality

investment properties that grows

the investment base, as developments

are retained rather than realised.”

Attacq’s asset base of R12.5

billion at March 2013 includes

landmark commercial and retail

assets and developments. Among its

developments is the prime Waterfall

Business Estate an infill development

between Johannesburg and Pretoria.

It also benefits from an African

portfolio, which includes Bagatelle Mall

of Mauritius and Bagatelle Offices, and

has an effective 32.5 percent stake in

Atterbury Africa, in partnership with

Hyprop Investments and Atterbury

Property Holdings, which invests in

retail centres and developments across

sub-Saharan Africa.

“Our long-term strategy is to achieve

an optimal portfolio balance of 70

percent of our assets by value in South

Africa, 20 percent in other countries on

the African continent and 10 percent

internationally outside Africa,” said

Wilken. “We are already making good

progress on this objective and will

continue to seek opportunities to

further this goal as well as expand our

development pipeline to grow longterm



Zanu PF unveils plan

to save Zimbabwe


Zimbabwe’s President Robert

Mugabe has rubberstamped a new

plan designed to lift the country’s

aligning economy.

The plan, called the Zimbabwe

Agenda for Socio-Economic

Transformation (Zim Asset), is a fiveyear

economic plan designed to make

good on a raft of Zanu PF election

promises which include rolling out

the indigenisation programme to

poor Zimbabweans.

“All the source documents

recognise the continued existence

of the illegal economic sanctions,

subversive activities and interference

in the country’s internal affairs by

some hostile countries. This therefore

underlines the need to come up with

sanctions busting strategies and to put

emphasis on reliance on local funding

for the plan, hence Zim Asset’s focus

on the full exploitation of and value

addition to the country’s abundant

resources,’’ said Finance Minister

Patrick Chinamasa.

The blueprint projects that the

economy will grow by an average of

7.3 percent, improve by 3.4 percent in

2013, 6.1 percent in 2014 and continue

on an upward growth trajectory to 9.9

percent by 2018.

The policy has four strategic clusters

that the government will prioritise

- food security and nutrition, social

services and poverty eradication,

infrastructure and utilities, and value

addition and beneficiation.


go to www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com/news for all of the latest news from africa


Westinghouse in SA

nuclear MoU

Toshiba Corporation’s Westinghouse

Electric Company has signed a

Memorandum of Understanding

(MoU) with South Africa’s Sebata

Group in preparation for what it

calls “the potential construction” of

Westinghouse AP1000 nuclear power

plants in the country.

In a statement, Westinghouse

said the MoU marks the start

of a collaboration aimed at the

“development of an engineeringled

organisation, involved in a

variety of disciplines, including

safety, health, environment,

risk and quality (SHERQ) and

authorised inspection agency

services, manufacturing quality

support and skills development


Puma ends Bafana

Bafana sponsorship

Just a few days after banking

group Absa ended its six-year

association with Bafana Bafana,

sportswear manufacturer Puma

has ended its association with the

South African FA (Safa) following

the match-fixing scandal involving

the national team.

“Following match fixing

allegations made against

Safa along with inappropriate

responses from within the football

organisation (including the

suspension of senior officials),

PUMA terminated the contract

with immediate effect,” the

company announced. “PUMA

abides by a code of ethics in all

areas of its business operations

and expects its partners to adhere

to the same values. PUMA would

and training in the nuclear

industry sector”.

Westinghouse has been active in

South Africa’s nuclear industry, mainly

through support to the Koeberg

Nuclear Power Station (pictured),

since the 1990s and is at the origin of

the nuclear fleet technology in the

country – South Africa’s two reactors

are Westinghouse-licensed.

like to state that with notable

exception to the issues in question

it enjoyed a good working

relationship with SAFA, and wishes

them well for the future.”

In December, a Fifa investigation

found ‘compelling evidence’ that

four South Africa friendlies had

been fixed prior to their hosting of

the 2010 World Cup.

“This important agreement with

Sebata Group not only reaffirms

our pledge to use local talent and

resources, but our commitment

to develop and support the South

African nuclear industry,” said

François Harari, Westinghouse vice

president and managing director for

France, Benelux and South Africa.

“Westinghouse and Sebata Group will

utilise their complementary skills in

upcoming projects to further develop

the expertise required for an eventual

nuclear build project in South Africa.

Supplier development is critical to

Westinghouse and that’s why we

think globally but act locally.”

Westinghouse recently signed

an agreement with the South

African Nuclear Energy Corporation

(Necsa) to investigate and

cooperate in the development of

local fabrication capabilities for fuel

assembly components.


DR Congo M23

rebels chased from

strongholds, says UN

The Democratic Republic of Congo’s

M23 rebel movement is all but finished

as a military threat, according to

reports citing the UN’s special envoy

in the country.

“Practically all M23 positions

were abandoned yesterday, except

a for small triangle at the Rwandan

border,” Martin Kobler is reported

to have told the UN Security

Council by video-link at a closed

door meeting.

The M23 movement emerged in

April 2012 after a mutiny by former

rebels who had been taken into the

DR Congo army under a 2009 deal.

Peace talks between the

government and M23, hosted by

neighbouring Uganda, recently

broke down.

go to www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com/news for all of the latest news from africa




De Beers begins

construction of new

underground mine

in Limpopo

De Beers has begun construction

on a new R20 billion underground

mine to extend the life of its

open-pit Venetia diamond mine in

Limpopo to beyond 2040.

“The investment will extend

the life of Venetia beyond 2040

and replace the open pit as South

Africa’s largest diamond mine,” the

De Beers Group said in a statement.

“With underground production

expected to commence in 2021,

over its life, the mine will treat

approximately 130 million tonnes

of ore, containing an estimated 96

million carats. The Mine will also

support over 8,000 jobs directly,

and a further 5,000 through the

supply chain – benefiting the South

African economy,” it added.

South African President Jacob

Zuma praised the company’s


Sub-Saharan Africa

‘improving business

regulation’ says

World Bank

Sub-Saharan Africa continues to

record a large number of reforms

aimed at easing the regulatory

burden on local entrepreneurs,

according to the World Bank’s 2014

Doing Business report.

The report’s data shows that,

of 47 economies in the region, 31

implemented at least one business

regulatory reform in 2012/13.

Rwanda, Côte d’Ivoire, and Burundi

were among the 10 economies globally

improving business regulation the most.

investment decision, explaining, “This

R20 billion investment in the diamond

industry, the biggest single investment

in the diamond industry in decades,

signals that indeed our mining sector

is poised for growth, and that it has a

bright future.”

Minister of Mineral Resources, Susan

Shabangu, said it boded well for the

economy of the province.

“The launch of this underground

mine shows that South Africa remains

an investment destination of choice

and, through our mining laws, we

will continue to ensure that this

Of the 20 economies improving

business regulation the most since

2009, nine are in Sub-Saharan Africa:

Burundi, Sierra Leone, Guinea-

Bissau, Rwanda, Togo, Benin,

Liberia, Côte d’Ivoire, and Guinea.

“It is encouraging to see so many

countries in Sub-Saharan Africa

engaged in reforms aimed

at reducing burdensome regulations

and building up stronger legal

institutions. In 2012/13, more than

twice as many economies in the

region reformed as in 2005,” said

Augusto Lopez-Claros, Director,

Global Indicators and Analysis,

World Bank Group. “Despite

these achievements, more can be

done to improve the quality of the

rules underpinning the activities

investment sustainably benefits

mining communities and laboursending


Mark Cutifani, chief executive

of Anglo American and

chairperson of the De Beers

Group, said Anglo had invested

nearly R200 billion in South Africa,

emphasising its “commitment and

making a real difference for South

Africa and all South Africans”.

“The positive social impact of

skills development, the acquisition

of economically valuable

experience and the potential to

uplift rural and sometimes poorer

communities is what exists here

at the heart of Venetia,” he said.

Philippe Mellier, chief executive

of the De Beers group, said the

decision to build an underground

mine at Venetia was a vote of

confidence by shareholders.

“Venetia will support South

Africa’s mining economy for

generations to come, and make

diamond moments possible

for millions of people around

the world.”

of the private sector, to ensure

continued convergence toward the

better practices seen elsewhere in

the world.”


go to www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com/news for all of the latest news from africa



Trailers opens new



One of South Africa’s leading

commercial trailer manufacturers,

Paramount Trailers, has opened a

new state-of-the-art manufacturing

facility in Midvaal.

“This is a reflection of our

commitment to investing in this

industry and becoming a leader

in customised trailer manufacturing

across the African continent,”

said Paramount Trailers CEO

Fernando Marques.

The family-owned business has

been based in Alrode, south of

Johannesburg, for the past 17 years

and over time acquired numerous

new premises around the initial offices

to facilitate the company growth.

In 2011, a decision was taken

to purchase land in the Kliprivier

Business Park and develop a new

manufacturing plant.

“We had outgrown our existing

premises and it was necessary for

us to upgrade our facilities,” said

Warren Marques, Paramount

Trailers MD. “The new premises

will enable us to not only

significantly increase the number of

trailers we are manufacturing on a

monthly basis but to also operate

more efficiently.”

The professional operational

facilities allow for a significant capacity

increase in the number of trailers that

can be manufactured monthly.

In addition, new equipment has

been purchased to ensure that the

latest innovations in customised trailer

manufacturing will be provided.

Marques is determined that no

matter how large the company

grows it is still imperative that a

personal relationship is maintained

with all clients.

“Our reputation and success can be

attributed not only to the excellent

trailers we produce but the superb

client relationships we foster,” he said.

In anticipation of the move,

and the increase in manufacturing

capacity and efficiency, Paramount

Trailers has already experienced

a significant increase in demand

and the company has increased its

staff complement by 41 percent

over the past four months,

additional employees joining the

workshop, administration, sales

and design departments.

“We have now entered the premier

division in this industry,” said Marques.

“We are proud of what we have built

over nearly two decades, but the time

has come for Paramount Trailers to

increase our footprint in South Africa

and across the SADC region.”


Renamo ends Mozambique

peace deal

Mozambique’s Renamo opposition movement has

ended its 1992 peace pact with the ruling Frelimo party,

which ended the country’s civil war, after government

forces attacked and captured the base of its leader

Afonso Dhlakama.

Renamo spokesman Fernando Mazanga told the

Reuters news agency that the attack was an attempt to

assassinate Mr Dhlakama but he managed to escape.

“Peace is over in the country... The responsibility lies

with the Frelimo government because they didn’t want to

listen to Renamo’s grievances,” he said.

About a million people were killed in the brutal civil

war which lasted from 1975 to 1992 and the country’s

economy has been booming ever since.

There are fears the country will slip back into chaos.


Ethiopia bans citizens from

travelling overseas for work

According to the state-run Erta news agency,

Ethiopia’s government has temporarily banned its

citizens from travelling abroad to look for work.

It has also provisionally barred employment agencies

from facilitating travel abroad.

In Erta’s report, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs was

quoted as saying countless Ethiopians had lost their

lives or “undergone untold physical and psychological

traumas due to illegal human trafficking”.

The government had taken various measures, including

setting up a national council and a taskforce, to protect

its citizens but they had not been able to “address the

problem effectively”.

The travel ban will remain in place until a “lasting

solution” is found.

go to www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com/news for all of the latest news from africa



fastjet CEO Ed Winter has become

something of an expert in overcoming

obstacles and shares his plans for

low-cost travel in Africa.

Writer Ian Armitage

10 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.COm


irline industry veteran

Ed Winter is a man

with a rather ambitious

plan – build the first pan-

African low-cost airline.

Now that is quite the task, but the

former pilot who held senior roles at

UK-based British Airways, easyJet and

Go has all the experience necessary to

pull it off.

“Africa is without doubt aviation’s

final frontier,” he says. “But it is an

environment where protectionism, a

lack of infrastructure and bureaucracy

have held things back.

“Africa is in desperate need of good

aviation connectivity. A billion people

live in Africa but it has just three percent

of the world’s aviation. If you look at it,

every city is a long distance to the next

one, poorly serviced by road and rail.

There’s usually a jungle, mountain, river

or lake in the way. Aviation should be

a much bigger feature of the African

economy than it is.”

And with Africa’s economies growing,

there are an increasing number of

people with the money to fly.

It makes good business sense.

“Our model relies on making

air travel more affordable to the

burgeoning middle class,” says Winter.

London-listed fastjet was created

following its acquisition of the

African airline Fly540 and operates

from four bases in Kenya, Tanzania,

Ghana and Angola.

“We launched flights under the

fastjet brand in Tanzania utilising our

Airbus A319 fleet at the end of 2012 and

currently fly four routes in Tanzania,” he

says. “Of course, in October this year,

we launched, after some considerable

delays, our first international flights

between Tanzania’s commercial hub

Dar es Salaam and Johannesburg in

South Africa, which represents a new

era for us. It has been more difficult

than we initially thought but we are

delighted we finally got here. Until

now that route has been prohibitively




expensive for many people, with

incumbents charging crazy prices,

which restricts the market size. But

the launch of this service offers a new,

affordable and reliable option to both

Tanzanians and South Africans – we’re

competing head-to-head with South

African Airways to provide real value for

money flights. We believe that with our

low fares we can stimulate demand on

this route significantly.”

It is the first of several planned

international routes for fastjet from

Tanzania and other potential new

bases throughout Africa.

Flights between the two cities

will initially be operated by fastjet

three times a week on Mondays,

Wednesdays and Fridays, increasing

in frequency as soon as consumer

demand dictates.

The plan is to use its Tanzanian

base as a springboard in much the

same way that easyJet spread across

Europe in the 1990s, when it exploited

the opportunity offered by the newly

liberalised single market.

“There is currently only one other

international route within Africa

operated by low-cost carriers apart

from our Dar es Salaam/Johannesburg

route,” says Winter. “Building on our

existing operation and the strong

consumer faith in our brand, the

opportunities for us to penetrate the

intra-Africa market are huge but so

are the challenges.”

Indeed, Africa’s low-cost carriers

face strong headwinds. The main

problem is costs. Governments impose

large taxes on fuel and tickets, and

airlines are charged higher insurance

premiums than established ones in

other countries.

“Europe’s budget-airline boom in

the 1990s was made possible by an

open sky agreement,” Winter says.

“But in Africa it is not open sky. We’re

waiting to see the outcome of a

court case where Comair (operating

British Airways and kulula.com) is

challenging newcomer low-cost airline

FlySafair from operating domestically

in South Africa because of ownership

regulations. It will have serious

ramifications because if you move

towards liberalisation and allow airlines

to operate in a competitive, free

market you drive airlines into efficiency.

If you look at Europe, the low-cost

airlines like easyJet or Ryanair are now

carrying hundreds of millions of people

who wouldn’t have travelled before.

In the background, the old traditional

airlines like British Airways, Air France

and KLM are still surviving and thriving,

becoming far more efficient. What you

end up with is far better connectivity

and an environment where the

consumer wins.”

On November 1, the day we talked

to Winter, fastjet launched services to

Mbeya in Tanzania. It is an important

domestic destination for the airline,

12 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com


which he says “given its location

in the south-west of the country,

close to the border, gives us access

to a catchment that spreads into

neighbouring countries.”

He expects to add further

international routes over the next few

months, including to destinations in

Zambia and Malawi.

“fastjet has been on an incredible

journey since we started flying

domestically in Tanzania with a single

A319 plane nearly 12 months ago

between Dar es Salaam, Mwanza, and

Kilimanjaro. With Mbeya, our services

will be going into the new Songwe

Airport, which has been upgraded

to allow it to handle jet aircraft

operating to international standards.

We have worked hard with Tanzanian

authorities and the Civil Aviation

Authority to get the right facilities

in place. Dar es Salaam will remain

the focal point for our international

expansion - destinations like Lusaka,

Harare, Maputo, Lilongwe, Entebbe,

Juba, Nairobi and Mombasa are all in

our sights. In the future I can envisage

routes from Kilimanjaro and Zanzibar

to Johannesburg. We’re looking

forward to announcing some more

international routes pretty soon and

we are confident in the potential of our

long-term strategy to become the pan-

African low cost airline of choice.”

Winter hopes to have a South

African operation up and running soon

and said that local law requires airlines

to be 75 percent owned by a domestic

firm, another challenge and something

that has so far stopped fastjet from

getting into the market there.

“Our business model actively

encourages giving up equity to local

partners but unlike other franchise

businesses such as restaurants or the

hotel trade, the airline industry has

standards on which it simply cannot

compromise, given the safety factor.”

fastjet’s solution is a management

contract that will require partners to

give up control of matters such as

safety, pilot training and maintenance.

“What we want to create is a series of

fastjet airlines. To the consumer it is all

one airline because it will offer the same

levels of punctuality and reliability, the

same customer service and be sold as

part of the same network. Now clearly

the passenger needs to be told at some

point that they are being carried by

fastjet SA or fastjet Tanzania etc. and

that they are separate companies but

if we can create that series of fastjet

airlines around Africa to the consumer

that becomes something very similar

to the easyJet model around Europe.

The challenge for us is how do we

control that quality and reliability across

all those airlines? One area we are

making progress is maintenance which

is very important from a lot of aspects

– costs, flight safety and reliability. So

the maintenance contract is vital and

rather than rely on lots of different

maintenance providers, we did requests

for proposals with several European

maintenance repair organisations and

Sabena Technics came out as being the

best and serves our structure. Therefore

each of the fastjet airlines will have

an arrangement as part of that global

contract so the same standards, quality

and reliability will be across the airlines.

It is that sort of thing that will enable

us to control the brand and reliability

across the pan-African network.”

Another urgent matter on the

agenda is the need to find a chairman,

a role Winter has temporarily assumed.

“We haven’t progressed the search

as quickly as we’d have liked,” he says.

But the future is bright.

“We’re excited. The low-cost model

is all about market stimulation. It is

not about market share. It is about

going into a market place that is

constrained because prices are too

high, coming in with a reasonable,

flexible fare and stimulating demand.

The fact that the middle classes are

growing rapidly just adds to the rate

of market expansion.

“I think we’re doing just that.”

Analysts believe Africa is ready for an

airline with the ambition of fastjet and

that a commonly branded airline is a

brilliant idea.

When flying in Tanzania from capital

Dar es Salaam to Kilimanjaro or Mwanza,

Winter says, 38 percent of passengers

are first-time flyers, testament to

Africa’s potential for growth.

fastjet flights in Tanzania sell for as

little as $20.

To learn more visit www.fastjet.com.



Investment profile

Investment profile


Africa Outlook takes a closer look at Mozambique’s

business and investment potential.

Writer Ian Armitage

14 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com


ozambique is a rising

economic power and

real GDP growth has

averaged eight percent

per year over the last

ten years, driven by bumper coal and

gas discoveries, according to the

African Development Bank.

But things seem to be slowing and

the country’s economy grew at just

4.8 percent in the first quarter of 2013,

thanks to extensive flooding in the

Limpopo Valley which saw agriculture,

an industry that constitutes around

23 percent of GDP, register a negative

growth rate of 2.6 percent compared

to the first quarter of 2012. The

manufacturing sector also contracted.

That aside, natural resourcebased

mega-projects continue

to be a particular boon for the

Mozambican economy. They have

spurred infrastructure development

and helped diversify Mozambique’s

exports away from agriculture.

Earlier this year, Australian mining

services company WorleyParsons

won a contract to build a 584kmlong

rail line connecting Brazilian

resources giant Vale’s coal mine in

Mozambique with the Port of Nacala

in the country’s northeast. When

it is finished, the rail link will be

able to transport 18 million tonnes

of coal a year. The Nacala Rail

Corridor Project will be undertaken

by WorleyParsons’ Mozambique

and South Africa divisions.

WorleyParsons will also perform the

detailed design of the rail facilities

and maintenance complex at Nacala.

The contract was awarded by

Corredor Do Desenvolvimento Do

Norte S.A. (CDN).

“We are delighted that Vale has

chosen WorleyParsons for this critical

infrastructure project and we look

forward to assisting Vale with the

achievement of its business objectives

in Mozambique,” WorleyParsons CEO

Andrew Wood said.

They aren’t the only ones benefiting.

Aveng Manufacturing, a division

of Aveng, one of South Africa’s

top diversified engineering and

construction groups, has also enjoyed

success in Mozambique where

it is looking at leveraging further

opportunities in the country and wider

region. It opened an office in Maputo

as part of its expansion in the country

earlier this year, responding to rapid

economic growth by constructing a

$17 million factory in Tete province to

produce materials for the country’s

huge infrastructure projects. Aveng

Manufacturing Lennings Rail Services

was awarded a contract for section

two of the Nacala Corridor Project and

is constructing a 62.5km rail line.

“Aveng Manufacturing has

factories in Swaziland and Zambia

and, in partnership with Aveng

Steel, has established two new

manufacturing and processing

plants in Tete, Mozambique, to

serve coal mining and related

infrastructure development in

the province. The steel factory

commenced production in April

2013. The concrete products

factory is expected to commence

operation in January 2014 and is well

positioned to supply pipes, culverts

and railway sleepers to the mining

and rail sectors in Mozambique,”

Aveng says in its 2013 integrated

annual report. “The operating group

continued to experience growth

in the export of its concrete and

steel products to Mozambique

and Zambia and is exploring

opportunities to build factories

in other growth markets in west

and east Africa where it does not

currently have a presence.”

The future it seems is bright.

“Mozambique’s transition from a

post-conflict country to one of Africa’s

“frontier economies” has been

nothing short of impressive,” says

the World Bank. “Economic growth

– spurred on by political stability,

steady macroeconomic management,

reconstruction, and structural reforms

– has been bolstered by a boom in large

foreign investments in the burgeoning

energy and natural resources sectors.

The country has become a world-class

destination for mining and natural

gas development. Vast untapped coal

reserves have attracted multinationals

such as Brazil’s Vale and Australian

Rio Tinto. Recent figures indicate that

foreign direct investment (FDI) doubled

to US$5.2 billion in 2012. The country’s

recent achievement of Extractive

Industry Transparency Initiative (EITI)

compliant status (October 2012) is an

important milestone in the country’s

economic development. Alongside

its natural resources, Mozambique’s

long coastline positions it as a natural

gateway to global markets for

neighbouring land-locked countries.”



Investment profile

The World Bank predicts the country’s

economy to increase by seven percent

this year and one man who is more

than aware of Mozambique’s potential

is Simon Everest, Country Manager for

Coca-Cola Sabco in Mozambique.

Coca-Cola Sabco has a huge 87

percent share of the carbonated drink

market in the country and has big

plans to grow the brand - and Everest

expects double-digit growth in the

next two to three years.

Conscious that new competitors

are being drawn by Mozambique’s

increasingly attractive economy as oil,

gas and mining operations grow, he is

working to raise the company’s game.

Coca-Cola however has clear

advantages in Mozambique. It’s

been operating there since 1994

when restrictions on South African

businesses operating in Africa were

lifted and it’s built up enormous brand

loyalty, a big factor in Africa’s markets.

The company also has what Everest

describes as “the best distribution

system in Mozambique and 1,000

experienced staff members” and

it’s strategically placed throughout the

elongated country with three plants:

one in Nampula servicing the North,

another in Chimoio servicing central

regions and a plant in the capital

Maputo servicing the

Southern provinces.

Everest says the locations

were carefully chosen because

of their geographic and strategic

importance, with Nampula covering

Northern provinces and Chimoio

placed equidistantly between the

port of Beira and the coal-producing

Tete region.

While the country’s roads could “still

do with some work” there is growing

investment into its infrastructure to

upgrade its railway connections, roads

and ports.

The company has committed

itself to the country and to increasing

its production capacity to meet

market demands.

“We’re investing $170,000 over the

next three years,” says Everest.

This includes installing a brand new

PET production line, a German-made

Krones line at the Chimoio factory,

which will triple PET capacity, which is

desperately needed.

They are also constructing a new

factory in Maputo where the present

facility is too small for production

needs. The new facility will ultimately

produce 140 million cases annually.

Phase one of the process is due to

be completed by the end of 2016

and will put capacity at about 95

million cases.

“We are making a very significant

investment because apart from

the production plant we are also

investing in coolers, vehicles and

people,” says Everest.

Mr Everest, who joined the firm in

November 2010, saw the potential

of the country and the company but

was also aware of big challenges

like capacity constraints that had to

16 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com


be overcome to reach Coca-Cola’s

full potential.

While he is happy with

Mozambique’s and his company’s

economic prognosis and growth

rates, he’s aware that the rate of

social upliftment is lagging behind.

“If you look at Maputo you can see

a lot of the infrastructure, housing

being developed, you’ve got plenty of

sports stadiums and there is a very nice

airport there now so there are signs of

wealth beginning to come through.

“Is there wealth actually getting

down to the ordinary man in the

street? Not at this stage, I think it

will take another few years before

it starts trickling through to smaller

businesses,” he says.

The Coco-Cola brand is strongly

associated with social responsibility

initiatives and he is especially proud

of its campaign to boost local

entrepreneurs, particularly women.

The company provides each

vendor with a big ice-chest and a

certain amount of core product and

support. There have been “a number

of really good stories of women who

have from starting with one ice box

ended up owning a number of stalls,”

Everest says.

Even more importantly for the

entrepreneurs, the company believes

that each ice box placed out in the

market “supports ten to 25 people.”

The project falls into the global

company’s 5 BY 20 campaign, launched

by Muhtar Kent, Chairman of the Coco-

Cola company, which aims to assist

in the empowerment of five million

women by 2020.

Everest’s excited about the

challenges facing Coca-Cola Sabco

in Mozambique and happy with the

moves to increase capacity.

“I think by the end of this year we

will, for the first time in a very long

time, have sufficient capacity to satisfy

demand… with the new investment

and PET line we are in a very good

spot,” he says.

It all sounds wonderful, but could

there be trouble ahead? Indeed

there might. Mozambique’s Renamo

opposition movement, the guerrilla

organisation that fought the existing

Frelimo-backed government in a

civil war, recently ended the 1992

peace pact after government forces

attacked and captured the base of

its leader Afonso Dhlakama. Renamo

spokesman Fernando Mazanga told

the Reuters news agency that the

attack was an attempt to assassinate

Mr Dhlakama but he managed

to escape. “Peace is over in the

country... The responsibility lies with

the Frelimo government because they

didn’t want to listen to Renamo’s

grievances,” he said.

About a million people were killed

in the brutal civil war which lasted

from 1975 to 1992 and the country’s

economy has been booming ever

since. There are fears it will slip back

into chaos and Renamo has certainly

shaken investor confidence.












Unilever Food Solutions helps chefs

all over the world “serve tasty,

wholesome meals that keep

guests coming back for more”.

Writer Chris Farnell

Project manager James Mitchell


f EOa OT Ud r & E d r I N k

nilever is one of the

most recognised names

in the food industry

around the world. If

you go to your fridge

right now there’s a pretty good

chance you’ll find something with the

word Unilever somewhere on the

label. Among the many facets of the

business is Unilever Food Solutions,

the professional culinary division which

is dedicated to offering products and

services to the food service market all

over the world. As managing director

Michel Mellis explains, “We work with

powerful global brands such as knorr,

Hellmann’s, Robertsons and Carte d’Or

in combination with local names such

Marvello, Meadowland and Fine Foods

in order to offer culinary solutions to

all kinds of operators, ranging from

hotels, restaurants, contract caterers

to quick service restaurants.”



Unilever Food Solutions

Of course, while Unilever is a

globally recognised brand, Unilever

Food Solutions can’t rely on brand

recognition alone to bring in

business. It’s unique selling point,

Mellis says, is the “incomparable end

results our customers can achieve on

meal preparation through our brands

and services”.

“We don’t just sell top quality

products and brands, but we also

offer services in the areas of menu

organisation, kitchen preparation and

guest satisfaction,” he says.

The main issue affecting Unilever Food

Solutions and the whole industry is a

combination of inflation and lower consumer

income, which pressures costs on one side and

takes value off the market on the other”

ENS africa

ENSafrica is the largest law firm and

the only one of its kind in Africa. The

firm benchmarks itself according

to international standards whilst

retaining a uniquely African focus,

making it well-equipped to advise

clients wherever they may choose to

do business.

The firm has approximately 550

practitioners and was established

over 100 years ago, making it one of

the oldest full-service law firms in

Africa. The firm has a breadth and

depth of experience and specialist

expertise that span all areas of law,

tax, forensics and IP.

As a law firm based in Africa,

ENSafrica has easy access to clients

and their markets and understand

the different political, cultural, lingual

and regulatory factors of working in

African countries.

Whether dealing with the complexity

of a multi-jurisdictional project,

or the establishment of a start-up

business in one African country,

ENSafrica’s localised experience and

expertise ensures that clients obtain

the benefit of scale and scope when

doing business in Africa.

ENSafrica is a recognised marketleader

and is ranked by Chambers and

Partners as a leading law firm.

Email Info@ensafrica.com


20 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

f e a t u r e




A new branch on the family tree.

Unilever’s on-going quest for a greener future, and Nashua’s firm commitment to reducing their clients’

carbon footprints has led to a natural business solutions partnership. Nashua proposed a solution that

is custom-built to Unilever’s needs, lowering the amount of paper printed while still maintaining a high

level of efficiency. The energy-saving functionality built into all Nashua’s devices reduces electricity

consumption when not in use, another planet saving feature.

With our like-minded approaches to business, we look forward to this

partnership blossoming.


Tel: +27 31 940 9120

email: info@nashuadbn.co.za


/NashuaLTD @nashuasolutions

Unilever Food Solutions

We don’t just sell

top quality

products and brands,

but we also offer

services in the areas of

menu organisation,

kitchen preparation

and guest satisfaction”

This combination of high quality

products and excellent service has

been key in consolidating Unilever

Food Solutions’ position as a market

leader, but the company is still setting

its sights higher even in the face of a

difficult financial climate. “This year we

are growing at twice the GDP index

in like-for-like business, which is a

relatively good performance,” Mellis

says. “However we feel there are

plenty of opportunities to accelerate.

The main issue affecting Unilever Food

Solutions and the whole industry is

a combination of inflation and lower

consumer income, which pressures

costs on one side and takes value off

the market on the other.”

24 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

f e a t u r e


Advising you

in changing


To find out more on

how we can assist you,

please contact our

Durban office in

South Africa on

+27 (0) 31 271 2000.

Sometimes bigger is better. Tap into a world of possibilities with

PwC. There’s much to be said for world-class solutions and a

global network of expertise. We establish relationships to bring

real value to our clients, our people and the communities in which

we operate.

Contact us for tax, advisory and assurance services tailored to

your specific needs.

©2013. PricewaterhouseCoopers (“PwC”). All rights reserved. (13-13943) www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com


Unilever Food Solutions

However, while the economic climate

is one thing, Mellis believes the

biggest challenge facing the industry

right now is something far more

prosaic. “Our biggest challenge has

been communication,” he admits.

“Because the market is so pulverised

and operators don’t follow any specific

communication channel exclusively,

it is a real challenge to talk to our

target food service market. That’s

why we must develop multiple forms

of communication in search of our

customers. Then of course there is

also the challenge of operating in an

emerging market environment, where

the economy is not particularly strong,

there is a high unemployment rate,

volatile currency and social inequality.”

We have such

well known

and loved brands...

we must leverage

into new markets”

Touch Design Ltd

The challenge

Unilever’s Robertsons brand is the

category leader in SA. The challenge

was to redesign the bottle, cap &

refill box and branding & graphics,

across over 120 SKUs, to improve

shelf navigation, merchandising, and

encourage consumers to discover

and expand their repertoire of

Robertsons herb and spices.

The solution

The new ownable bottle design and

ingenious user-friendly custom cap

- the world’s first injection moulded,

orientated, multi-functional closure

on a glass bottle – was the result of

structural design based on insight,

usage and ergonomics.

The results

From brief to launch within just 18

months! This included structure,

graphics and a new packaging line.

The 6 month sales target was

achieved within just 5 months;

volume increased by 8%; and turnover

by 14%.

The pack scored 9.2 out of 10 with

Unilever’s home testers - the highest

score ever recorded!

International awards include: winner

of Ambient Food Category Gold

Medal; Overall Goldpack Award IPSA

2013; and Runner up International

Food and Beverage awards 2013.

The Iconic Brand Survey 2013 now

recognises the Robertsons brand as a

top 10 South African brand.

...which we are very proud of.

Tel 00 44 (0) 1344 894507

Email heidim@touchpackdesign.com


26 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

f e a t u r e

The Industry’s

best kept

secret . . .

“touch are small

enough to

big enough

to cope”


“No on-cost, and



Birds Eye

“Brief to launch and

uplift in 18 months!

. . . touch rocks!”

Unilever SA

. . . that


talking about!

for details on how we can touch your brand call Heidi Maxwell on +44(0) 1344 894 524

email heidim@touchdesign.com or visit us at www.touchdesign.com



Unilever Food Solutions

In the face of these diverse challenges,

the most important thing is for

Unilever Food Solutions to have a

team with the skills and experience

to deliver the very best. For Mellis,

ensuring the business has the best

talent is an absolute priority. “We

make sure we have the best people by

attracting the best talents, developing

them and making sure they stay with

us. The care we take in creating a

great work environment has been

recognised. This year Unilever was

elected best employer to work for,

which obviously helps tremendously in

finding people who are willing to work

for us. We also have probably one of

the best development programmes in

the market, which includes real global

exposure and local training that ranges

from market insights to leadership

behaviour, as well as on the job


We make sure we

have the best

people by attracting the

best talents, developing

them and making sure

they stay with us”

GEA Process


GEA Process Engineering is a

global leader in the provision

of hygienic process equipment

and turnkey process lines for the

food industry within liquid and power

process engineering.

Powder Processing. GEA offer a range

of dryers for handling fluid, paste and

moist powder, particulate and granulate

feeds as well as powder handling and

packaging systems

Liquid Processing. GEA supply complete

processing lines or equipment that can

be integrated into an existing liquid

processing system or combined with

downstream systems to a complete

production line or turnkey installation

Concentration & Pre-treatment.

Concentration of liquid streams is used

to increase the solids content and/or

achieve a volume reduction by removing

water. Concentration may be a standalone

operation, but is also an important

upstream step in a drying process

Process Automation Solutions. Our

global network ensures best practice

process automation solutions – every

time – everywhere

After Sales & Service. We provide a

single source for the procurement

of technical service, spare parts,

automation support and training. Our

complete approach is further enhanced

with our web based tool GEA Assist.

Customers for Life!

South Africa

Tel: + 27 11 805 6910

Email: info.za@gea.com

United Kingdom

Tel: +44 1925 812650

Email: info.gpuk@gea.com


28 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

f e a t u r e

Together, we can make it!

GEA Process Engineering is recognised as an international leader in food processing technology,

setting the trend in process engineering and plant design. From the provision of hygienic liquid process

equipment to turning food products into powder types - our expertise and know-how covers all

aspects of food processing. GEA is your partner in excellence. Together, we can make it.

GEA Liquid Processing (Pty) Ltd

Midrand, South Africa

Tel +27 11 805 6910, Email info.za@gea.com

GEA Process Engineering Ltd

Warrington, United Kingdom

Tel +44 1925 812650, Email info.gpuk@gea.com


engineering for a better world

GEA Process Engineering



Unilever Food Solutions

With top of

the range

talent and brands

that are known

and loved the

world over,

Unilever Food

Solutions is in a

great position right

now, and the

business intends

to make the very

most of that”

30 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

f e a t u r e





If you are

interested in

developing your

career and are a

good performer, a

major global

company like us will

always have a place

for your next step”

However, investing so heavily in the

company’s staff can be a doubleedged

sword. When your company

has the best talent, it makes them

a rich target for head hunters. “the

real challenge becomes preventing

other companies tempting our

talent away after we’ve worked with

them for so long,” Mellis admits.

“We strive to avoid this by offering

great career possibilities combined

with the pride of working for a

company with such high ethical

principles. If you are interested in

developing your career and are a

good performer, a major global

company like us will always have a

place for your next step.”

With top of the range talent and

brands that are known and loved the

world over, Unilever Food Solutions

is in a great position right now, and

the business intends to make the very

most of that.

tapflo is a Swedish manufacturer

of air operated diaphragm pumps

as well as horizontal centrifugal

pumps & range of magnetic drive pumps.

the company was originally established

as a pump distribution company founded

in 1980. the present company product

program includes approximately 50

different models for all needs.

Tapflo is represented by own companies

in 25 countries and by independent sales

companies in another 20 countries and

has app 350 employees.

Since 1997 Tapflo has been present in the

South African market with offices in KZn,

gauteng, and Eastern Cape & Western

Cape. With personal service and years of

experience in liquid handling Tapflo offers

competent advice in most applications.

The Tapflo Group, including Tapflo (Pty)

ltd, will actively incorporate the on-going

assessment, nurturing and training of

their staff, within a planned structure, for

the long term benefit of both the staff

member and for the group as a whole.

Product range

Air Operated Diaphragm Pumps

Horizontal centrifugal pumps

Vertical centrifugal pumps

Self-Priming centrifugal pumps

Mag drive centrifugal pumps

Rotary lobe pumps

Rotary wing pumps

gear pumps

Flexible impeller pumps

Hose(peristaltic) pumps

Drum pumps


5 years Product Warranty

ISO 9001 certified

CE marked products

the EC AtEX directive 94/9/EC

EhEDG certified

Tel 031 701 5255

Email sales@tapflo.co.za



f O O d & d r I N k






Ben's Erection & Fabrication

is an innovative South African

materials handling company

whose services include:

• Steel erections

• Steel fabrication

• Steel work maintenance

• Machinery maintenance

• Steel repairs

• Machine repairs

• General steel fabrication

• Steel constructors

• Material handling

• Steel - mining industry

And many more...

Proud Suppliers of

Radio & Television

Tracking Services

to Unilever

Since 2008

For more information visit us at

www.afstereo.com or www.gnosko.com


f O O d & d r I N k

Working together.

Reaching the top.

Shepstone & Wylie is proud to be long-standing

business partners with Unilever Food Solutions.

Together, we strive for excellence.

24 Richefond Circle, Ridgeside Office Park,

Umhlanga Rocks, 4319. Tel: 031 575 7000





We deliver project support through every stage of production. From cost

estimation and planning all the way through to project initiation, fabrication,

inspection, transportation and installation.Our highly skilled staff of

artisans perform their tasks, professionally, punctually and promptly .


Tel: +27 31 461 4036 | Email: info@africanarc.co.za



Unilever Food Solutions

The food

service market

is very promising

in this part of the

world and we plan

to outpace market

growth at least at

double rate”

“The future is there for us to make the

most of it,” Mellis says. “Specifically

for Unilever Food Solution in Africa,

we will keep developing our South

Africa power house, and make a more

structured move into Sub-Saharan

African markets.”

As the company builds on its growth

in existing markets, and approaches

new ones, he is confident in Unilever’s

unique value proposition. “We have

such well known and loved brands,

that in combination to our unique

market approach, we must leverage

into new markets like Angola, Nigeria

and Ethiopia, just to name a few. The

food service market is very promising

in this part of the world and we plan

to outpace market growth at least at

double rate.”

There are clearly exciting prospects

ahead for Unilever Food Services,

but more than the wide recognition

of their brands, the quality of their

products and service, or even the

talents of their people, there is one

thing that Mellis believes the company

keeps in mind above all else.

Nordson Corporation

Nordson adhesive application

equipment is used in numerous

industries to bond products

during manufacturing.

Nordson’s OptiBond Solutions

Enable packagers to stretch their

adhesive up to 100 percent

Double the number of packs sealed

per kilogram of adhesive

Optimise adhesive bead length,

placement, diameter and volume

Seal packs with significantly less

adhesive while preserving bond and

package integrity.

The ProBlue Fulfill is an integrated

adhesive melter and fill system.

Automatic adhesive replenishment

saves operator time, prevent thermal

shock and adhesive degradation

Uninterrupted operation eliminates

missed beads, poor bonding,

downtime due to empty tank and

reduces contamination.

Tel +27 21 510 1888

Email infosa@nordson.com


Lowe and Partners

South Africa

Lowe and Partners is a global

multi-agency partnership

designed to give clients a high

concentration of senior, smart and

flexible problem solvers to deliver

ideas for business.

Utilising the partner network, Lowe

and Partners is able to build brands

offering services from strategy and

media, through to advertising in

both above- and below-the-line to

point of purchase.

Key clients of the partner group

include: Unilever, Merck, Fromageries

Bel, SAB, Cape Times, CTFM, Tsogo

Sun, Castle Lite, Sasol, Nestlé, Media

24, Hansa Pilsener, SA Homeloans,

Avis, Investec and Adcock Ingram.

Tel +27 11 780 6306

Email loweandpartnerssa.com


36 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

f O O d & d r I N k

The best thing

since sliced bread.

Lowe and Partners SA has always strived for perfection and it’s within Unilever

Spreads that we have met a like-minded client. The success of the relationship

over the years is easy see. From loved seedman animations, to showing the world

its first live heart surgery, both Lowe and Unilever have pushed the boundaries and

taken some of SA’s favourite brands – Rama, Flora, Blue Band and Stork – to

heights that seemed impossible. This is the kind of fruitful relationship that we at

Lowe and Partners SA set out to forge every day. Find out more about Lowe and

Partners SA at www.loweandpartnerssa.com or call 011 780 6100.






Drake & Scull is one of the largest and most sophisticated Facilities

Management and Technical Service Providers in Southern Africa. We

provide extensive technical, nontechnical and business support services,

which enables us to deliver continuous cost benefits while improving the

quality of our clients non-core services.

We are the leading white-collar

recruitment company in

South Africa and Africa. We

have earned this position by setting and

consistently achieving high standards

in the recruitment, training and

management of permanent and contract/

temporary staff for almost 40 years.

Our full circle Staffing Solutions (fcS²)

model incorporates our end-to-end

service offering which has been defined

and refined over decades and is today,

the most comprehensive in the industry,

it includes:

Permanent Staffing, contract/Temporary

Staffing, field Marketing, response

Handling, Contingent Workforce

Management and Outsourced Payroll.

We are a level 2 BBBEE Contributor

boasting 70.22% black ownership and

30.21% black female ownership.

Tel +27 21 413 4700






Tel: +27 11 892 1900

Fax: +27 11 892 1616

54 Tile Road, Boksburg North, 1460


Offer of personalized staffing solutions

to various industries

A leader in temporary and permanent

employment solutions

Excess of 10 years payroll management

Achievable talent development, with

accredited training on offer

quality and expert HR and IR Solutions

to all our clients

Expert professional individuals with

solid experience and exposure to

labour supply chain

24 hours operations in selected areas

Over 3500 registered staff on record

Reputable client retention of over

ten years

We place over 2000 staff daily into


For service excellence in staffing solutions

Tel +27 11 452 9856

Email sales@stafflog.co.za



F o o d & D r i n k

You can’t risk

anyone but the

best handling

your recruitment.

Look no further

than Quest.

Think Quest.

With almost 40 years of experience, unparalleled

expertise and world class candidate assessment

tools, partnering with us will help you break

new frontiers.

To ensure your business reaches new heights,

think Quest.

Permanent Staffing | Flexible Staffing

Field Services | Outsourced Payroll

Response Handling








Industrial refrigeration contractors

Specialise in Ammonia and Freon


total system maintenance and repair

Preventative maintenance agreements

fault finding and maintenance works

Overhauling of screw / reciprocating


Supply and installation of walk-in cold

rooms and freezers

Supply and installation of water

chilling equipment

Supply and installation of air

conditioning units

Supply and installation of ventilation


24 /7 Emergency service

Maintaining refrigeration standards

and safety measures

Basic refrigeration training

Safety awareness training

Tel +27 (0)11 915-6510

Email endeavour@iburst.co.za


The most

important aspect

of everything that we

do is the consumer”

“the most important aspect

of everything that we do is the

consumer,” he says. “And consumers

in our market are very local, despite

globalization in many sectors. We at

Unilever Food Services spend many,

many hours talking to consumers,

investigating market trends and

learning from observing them. We

do all of this in order to pass all this

knowledge onto our customers, so

that they will always be empowered

to develop the very best solutions

for making their guests, and our

consumers, happy.”

to learn more visit www.ufs.com.

Atlas Copcos long history in the Southern

African region makes it a leading player

in numerous industries, including FMCg.

Our products and services are designed

and manufactured to assist customers

in achieving maximum productivity.

Our vision is to become and remain

“First in Mind—First in Choice ®” with

our customers and we believe that our

combination of product excellence and

dedicated staff assist in achieving our

vision. South Africa, Namibia, Zimbabwe,

Botswana and Mozambique together

make up the Southern African region.

Atlas Copco in Southern Africa employs

an extensive sales force for each division

whom are dedicated to ensuring the

supply of products and services that are

best able to meet client requirements.

Atlas Copco is committed to the superior

productivity of its customers and sales

staff is trained to assist in selecting

products and services to achieve this.

Tel +27 11 821 9000

Email atlas.copco@za.atlascopco.com



f O O d & d r I N k

Endeavour Engineering & Refrigeration cc

Industrial Ammonia

Freon Refrigeration

Office Air-conditioning

Mechanical Maintenance

Safety Awareness Training

.... providing the best possible solutions

to meet Client refrigeration needs and problems










Tel: +27 (0)11 915-6549 • Fax: +27 (0)11 915-6510 • Mobile: +27 (0)82 461 1252 • eMail: endeavour@iburst.co.za




A winning



42 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.COm

F o o d & D r i n k

Symrise is a global supplier of fragrances, flavorings, cosmetic

active ingredients, raw materials and functional ingredients

and its clients include manufacturers of perfumes, cosmetics,

food and beverages, the pharmaceutical industry and

producers of nutritional supplements. Africa Outlook speaks to

Ibrahim Wagdy about how Symrise has taken a hold in Egypt

and beyond and its plans for the African continent.

Writer Hannah Eiseman-Reynard

Project manager James Mitchell

ymrise creates

flavourings and

fragrances for

cosmetics, toiletries,

sweets, savoury

foods and beverages. Its clients

include manufacturers of perfumes,

cosmetics, food and beverages,

the pharmaceutical industry and

producers of nutritional supplements

and it is among the top four

companies in the global flavors and

fragrances market.

Of course, the firm is headquartered

in Holzminden, Germany, but the

group is represented in over 35

countries in Europe, Africa, the Middle

East, Asia, the U.S. and Latin America.

“It takes on average 45 aroma

chemicals to make a flavour so it takes

a long time to train those people

to develop a solid knowledge of

hundreds of raw materials to be able

to create different flavours,” says

Symrise Egypt’s Managing Director

Ibrahim Wagdy, talking about how

Symrise trains technologists to work

in flavours and fragrances.

It sounds like a lot of fun – how do

we get in?

“We prefer to bring fresh people in

than to headhunt,” he replies. “We

operate in quite a niche area and we

select young, fresh graduates who

show scientific curiosity and have a

can-do attitude. We need them to be

entrepreneurial, pro-active people.

It’s a very competitive industry

and our clients compete in a very

competitive industry.”

The training programme can

see selected candidates travelling

and doing training and internships

for months at a time. Symrise has

operations all over the world, so the

opportunities can be extremely wide

and varied.

“Symrise was formed ten years ago

when Haarmann & Reimer (H&R) and

Dragoco merged,” says Mr Wagdy.

“Both companies were already major




We claim to know the consumers in Africa much

better than our competitors. We do lots of market

research. This year we’re looking especially into the food

and beverage market”

global players in the industry with

over 100 years heritage and we’ve had

strong growth since year-on-year and

that’s reflected on our share value in

the stock market. We’re the fourth

biggest globally and the second

biggest in Europe, the Middle East

and Africa.”

The company has an annual total

turnover nearing two billion euros and

employs over 5,000 people.

Wagdy’s involvement with the firm

began in 2010 when Symrise acquired

Futura Labs Group, a leading flavours

and fragrances manufacturer in Egypt

and the United Arab Emirates.

Egypt has a population of 80 million

and is a fast-growing market.

“Symrise thought merging the two

companies would end up with a faster

growing gig: Futura Labs had over 100

people and offered a lot of synergy, as

well as a very good technical team,”

Wagdy says. “Africa is a focal point

because of the potential in it. We had

been growing rapidly in Egypt and the

region – we have two plants in Egypt

and one in Dubai. Integration went

very smoothly back in 2010 and since

then we’ve been doing double-digit

growth in Egypt and in all of Africa.”

Double-digit growth across a whole

continent? “We’re growing faster

than the industry,” says Wagdy.

Symrise has another base in South

Africa and from these two locations the

company is plotting to conquer Africa.

So what’s the secret of its success?

“All top industry players have good

technology and special molecules but

our service is what really distinguishes

us,” says Wagdy. “We have on-site

support for our clients. There are other

players who simply send off-the-shelf

samples for the client to evaluate

but we visit our clients, tailor make

a flavour creation over several visits.

We then fine tune the recipe with

the client testing it on his production

line and with consumer tests. It’s an

integrated process. Our partnership

44 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

f e a t u r e

taste for life®

Making the tastes people love.

HealtH and pleasure and tHe

COuntless OptiOns in between

taste for life® is our unique approach to turn taste solutions into success: from holistic health to pure pleasure. When it comes

to the perception of food, the boundaries are blurring. “Health” has become mainstream, “pleasure” does not have to mean

guiltiness, “light” can taste better than the real thing, indulgent food is exciting. taste for life® has been devised as an answer to

these multi-faceted consumer needs. It offers easy-to-handle solutions for the industry, giving the consumers the products they

desire and the taste they love. www.symrise.com




46 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

f O O d & d r I N k

goes beyond even making sure we

deliver successful finished product

and we often help clients engaging

with other complimetary suppliers of

packaging or machinery.

“We really look at the whole

product concept,” Wagdy stresses.

In addition, Symrise puts plenty

of effort into ensuring not just that

its flavours and fragrances smell

and taste great, but that they are

appropriate to their markets.

“We claim to know the consumers

in Africa much better than our

competitors. We do lots of market

research. this year we’re looking

especially into the food and beverage

market – and researching how the

African consumer sees refreshment.”

this research serves Symrise well,

and it also serves its clients well.

“Clients are happy to see we have

research-based products,” Wagdy

says, who explains that consumer

trends are leading the industry and

Symrise is staying ahead of the curve.

“Consumer health is a focal area – we

have created a business unit which

caters to consumer health. this focus

is what the market wants.”

In addition it is attractive for the

consumer, not to mention a great

business model to look closely

into sustainability.

“All the natural materials that we use

have to be used in a responsible and

sustainable way… for example, for the

vanilla we have a special programme

in Madagascar, and we’re the only

company in our industry that does

this. We have a sustainable growth

programme with the local growers and

we help support that community.”

the company gained DqS

certification in november of this year

and is a certified green company. It has

a campaign currently to help preserve

the threatened blue lavender species

of Provence, Wagdy says.

Sustainable ingredients aside,

what are some of the challenges

facing Symrise?

“the main issue is the ever-growing

complexity of industry regulations.

those standards keep getting more

and more complex every year.

Every day we see more and more

certifications we have to comply

with and our clients often have

their own regulatory limitations

and specific quality certifications

too. Operating across so many

countries and regions adds to

the complexity.”

So what’s the focus for the future?

“We’ll continue to focus on Africa

where we’re putting more and more

resources” Wagdy says. “Egypt was

first – investing in infrastructure to

manufacture flavours, emulsions

and seasonings in Egypt and South

Africa. Our main focus will be on

development and production. We

want to remain one of the top two

suppliers in Africa.”

that seems pretty much guaranteed.

to learn more visit www.symrise.com.








Greenbelt Fertilisers,

a 100 percent subsidiary of

CHC Commodities, plays a major

role in africa’s farming community.

We talk to managing director

Robert Coventry.

Writer Hannah Eiseman-Reynard

Project manager James Mitchell

48 WWW.aFRICaouTlookMaG.CoM

f o o d & d r i n k

reenbelt Fertilisers

(GBF) was

incorporated in 2004

and founded in Zambia

but over the years

has expanded into Mozambique,

Zimbabwe and Malawi.

The firm has what managing director

Robert Coventry describes as “a proud

record” in giving farmers “a higher

yield with minimal costs” and he says

that while it has traditionally focused

on the commercial sector, “we are

now also targeting smaller farms”.

With a small scale farmer, they’ll

typically use one fertiliser for any crop

and in any soil. The potential in this

sector is high.

“We identified a need for more

competition and better quality

fertilisers,” says Coventry.

GBF’s formula seems to work and

in just nine years it has become the

biggest supplier to the commercial

sector in Zambia.

To grow that fast it helps to have

strong commercial links. Greenbelt

Fertilisers are a 100 percent owned

subsidiary of CHC Commodities

Ltd., a firm which specialises in

agricultural products such as maize,

wheat, sorghum, malting barley

and soya beans. It has links to major

farming enterprises, as well as strong

relationships in the logistics side of the

business – handling and shipping large

quantities of food products on behalf

of traders and relief agencies.

The positioning is strong, good

commercial ties and the product is of

a high quality – a strong start for any

business, says Coventry.

“Greenbelt Fertilisers was

incorporated in 2004 as a fertiliser

blending and marketing company,

offering agronomic services to farmers

to determine accurate crop and soil

specific fertiliser requirements for

the commercial farming sector in

particular,” he explains. “We don’t

sell generic fertilisers. Each fertiliser is

We identified a

need for more

competition and better

quality fertilisers”

made up specifically for each farmer’s

soil type, crop and yield expectation

on prescription.”

GBF has made a name for itself

selling an extremely high quality

product, pitched perfectly for every

customer’s soil type, ground type,

crop and more. How do they go about

it? With some of the biggest blending

plants in the world. “We can blend 11

different raw materials at a time to

create a highly-specialised product –

there’s almost no one else that can

provide that efficiency,” says Coventry.

With such a specialised and

tailormade product it’s hard to get

specifics on what GBF can offer, but it

has a range of slow-release coatings

and ingredients and raw materials

from all over the world.

“Primarily, Greenbelt Fertilisers

has been focused initially on large

commercial farms – defined as farmers

who grow 100 hectares or more and

large corporate farming operations,”

says Coventry.

In the short time it has been in

operation the company has managed

to grow to an 80 percent share in

the Zambian sugar market. This is

something Coventry is very proud

of. “The larger farms and corporate

operations are always on the look

out for innovation and we run field

days with farmers to educate them

about the benefits of our products

and what we could do for them,”

he says.

But of course there is tremendous

opportunity among small scale

farmers. They though need a bit

of convincing.

“That’s right. It’s the smaller farmers

who need more convincing. They need

cheaper fertiliser and they stick to

what they’re used to so they’re harder

to convert. However, the smaller farms

are coming around as Greenbelt’s

market share – and interest in it –

grows rapidly.”

In 2010 GBF purchased a second

plant from Ranco in the U.S

increasing the blending company to

factories in Zambia.

The second factory is operating in the

Mkushi farm block, allowing for further

expansion in the north of the country.

GBF has also been in Mozambique

for two years and it looking to expand

further throughout the continent.

It opened a blending plant at the

port in Beira in 2011.

“We are targeting Africa,”

Coventry says.

But, while making great use of

local materials, most ingredients in

the fertilisers need to come in from

abroad. The port location reduces

transport costs on import as well as on

export, and opens up further markets.

“There’s a logistical advantage to

shipping by sea. We’re working with key

ports for cheaper transport costs, and

we’re looking to expand down the east

coast by sea,” says Coventry. “What

have some of the challenges been facing

Greenbelt Fertilisers over the past year

or so? Primarily it’s just been with capital.

People need to order fertiliser about

four months in advance, so we hold a lot

of stock and we hold a lot of capital.”

In a bid to cut costs and raise

efficiency for clients, GBF has been

focusing increasingly on its own

environmental impact.

“Some fertilisers can have up

to 50 percent filler when they are

transported. At Greenbelt Fertilisers we

transport them in concentrated forms



Greenbelt Fertilisers

to reduce transport costs and the

environmental impact of those costs.”

In addition the company keeps a

keen eye on the environmental impact

of its products when sprayed on crops.

“We aim to reduce the negative effect

of fertiliser on the environment,”

says Coventry. “By creating a highly

specialised product for Zambian

soil, the effects of urea loss from

leaching can be reduced dramatically –

keeping more nutrients in the soil and

protecting the ground water.”

And with operations in so many

different countries and regions, how

does the company ensure quality

delivery across its 1,000 employees?

“We always aim to have as many

international training days as possible.

We have health and safety training

and much more. But across the

whole operation we have one guiding

philosophy on high-quality crop nutrition

and soil nutrition – that stays the same.”

Having been in Mozambique for

two years, what other plans does GFB

have? “We want to continue as we are

doing: offering a specialised product

with excellent service at a good price,

and we want to have strong growth

and be number one in Central and East

Africa,” says Coventry. “We aim to

increase market share and expand along

East Africa especially. We aim to do this

by continuing to create a better service

and a better product.”

GBF is already a force to be reckoned

with and offers an excellent, highlyspecialised

product. This company

has staked its claim to being part of

the ongoing development of African

agriculture and aims to increase

production of fertiliser to 150,000

metric tonnes in 2014/15 from 100,000

metric tonnes in the previous season.

“There are huge natural resources

in this part of the world and they’re

not being utilised,” says Coventry. “We

plan to help change that.”

To learn more visit www.greenbelt.co.zm.

Lushbury Fertilizer

Lushbury Fertilizer Corporation

congratulates Greenbelt Fertilisers

Ltd on your achievements. We are

privileged to have been a part of your

growth and success and look forward to

continued close cooperation.

Lushbury is a reliable supplier of a full line

of premium macro- and micro- nutrient

fertilizers and agricultural chemicals. Our

business is built around Africa and its

people. Our comprehensive portfolio of

products, deep expertise in logistics, and

dedication of our people sets Lushbury

apart from competition.

Nitrogen: G-AmSul, Urea, CAN 27%

Phosphates: DAP, MAP, TSP, SSP

Potash: MOP, SOP, KNO3

NPK: Any customized blend

Micros: Zinc, Kieserite, Sulphur,

Customized Formulas

Lushbury’s mission is to be our

customers’ preferred supplier of

all plant nutrients and agricultural

chemicals. Through close cooperation

and innovative thinking we are setting

the standard for quality, reliability, and

customer support.

Lushbury prides itself on a highest

degree of focus and commitment

to our customers. We are a proud

member of fertilizer industry’s leading

organizations: International Fertilizer

Association and The Fertilizer Institute.

We invite you to meet us at any of the

upcoming events and conferences.

We grow with our customers and

suppliers and drive value for our

investors. Grow with us!

Tel +1-516-308-2787

Email export@lushburyfertilizer.com


50 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

f e a t u r e



Concord Cranes


new heights

In 2012 Investec facilitated a

transaction whereby Concord

Cranes Ltd became the holding

company of Anglo-V3 Crane

Hire and Elcon Crane Hire.

Writer Ian Armitage

Project manager Stuart Shirra

52 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.COm

C o n s t r u c t i o n

uccessful couples don’t

just make promises

to each other; they

commit. And commit

to each other is exactly

what Elcon Crane Hire and Anglo-V3

have done.

In 2012 Investec facilitated a

transaction whereby Concord Cranes

Ltd became the holding company of

both entities.

It was a watershed moment.

“That’s right it was a big

development,” says David Wilkinson,

Elcon’s founder. “It all started really

back in 2011 when we released an

equity stake in the Elcon Group to

Investec and this was followed in

December 2012 with a merger between

Elcon Crane Hire and Anglo-V3. We

weren’t looking for a partner but

negotiations took place whereby

Investec, who had already decided to

invest in Anglo-V3, wanted us to join

and become part of a much larger

network and of course we’ve always

looked for new avenues to develop our

business interest over a larger African

footprint. We soon realised the future

of the crane industry might be to have

a bigger footprint in South Africa. It is

still our intention today.”

Both Elcon and Anglo-V3 are longstanding

participants in the South

African crane hire industry and both

have strong family histories.

They continue to trade under their

individual branding and livery and are

managed by the same management

teams – Herman van Staden leading

Anglo-V3 and David heading up

operations at Elcon.

“Concord Cranes was previously

called V3 Crane Hire which was the

original holding company of the

Anglo-V3 group, which included

Phakamisa Crane Hire the BBBEE

Company associated with Anglo-V3,”

says Mr van Staden. “With the

addition of Elcon Crane Hire to the

group the decision was made to

change the holding company name

to a new ‘neutral’ name, Concord

Cranes. The addition of Elcon has

added an immediate presence and

exposure for the group to the Durban

and surroundings markets where

Anglo-V3 previously has never been

actively involved.”

It is expected that within the

next 12 months that Mr Wilkinson’s

son, Marcus, will assume CEO

responsibilities for the Elcon trading

leg. Marcus has co-managed the Elcon

Group over the past seven years as

commercial director and is presently

working very closely with Mr van

Staden and Anglo-V3 operations

director Francois Smith on new

ventures for the group.

“We’re excited by the future and

I’m confident I’m leaving the business

in good hands,” Wilkinson says. “This

combining of resources into the market

has many positive advantages for all

our customers. This new group now

offers our clients the strength and

variety of 150 mobile cranes of different

sizes and lifting capabilities and wider

geographical coverage. This enhanced

capacity will certainly be of interest to

many industries around the country

where some cranes are in short supply.

To give you an example, access to the

bigger fleet has assisted us in securing

the Engen Refinery maintenance

contract in Durban, serviced through

Elcon, and Sasol in Secunda and PetroSA

in Mossel Bay through Anglo-V3.”

The combination means Concord

boasts a strong core and provides

a platform for expansion into areas

not yet covered geographically, Mr

Wilkinson says.

“And we, of course, have the skills

and experience in this industry, which

isn’t an easy industry to get into,”

he adds. “If you wanted to start a

crane company off in South Africa you

would need a large capital investment

and a spread of six or seven cranes

across the sizes because if you don’t

have a basket of sizes to offer your

clients you’re soon going to run out of

capacity and then the client has got to

go to an alternative supplier.”

Anglo-V3 Crane Hire has ten branches

spread across Gauteng, the Free State,

Western Cape, Eastern Cape and KZN,

with its headquarters in Midrand.

“Not a lot has changed since each

entity is effectively trading separately

as before,” Mr van Staden says. “The

added back-up via fleet size and inhouse

expertise including experience



Concord Cranes

has benefitted both companies and

has given the group more confidence

in tackling bigger projects going

forward. Financial stability, growth

potential via a bigger client base and

added fleet back-up are just a few of

the benefits of the merger and we’ll be

nationally more competitive in areas

where we were not previously active.”

Elcon has a branch in Richards Bay

and a head office in the Port of Durban.

“We service everywhere from

Maputo down to East London,”

Wilkinson explains. “Our clients

already see the benefits of the

bigger footprint.”

Concord Cranes boasts a fleet of

over 150 mobile cranes throughout the

range, from the smallest 7t capacity up

to the 550t all terrain, and has worked

itself into one of the “top three

operators in the country,” he says.

Elcon Crane Hire was born from

humble beginning in 1986 when Mr

Wilkinson purchased the construction

wing of Elgin Engineering.

“I was a consultant in the sugar

industry in the early years for CG Smith,

being involved in the refurbishment

and building of all sugar mills north and

south of Durban,” he says, recalling

Elcon’s heritage. “One of the principle

contractors on these sugar mills was

a construction and manufacturing

company called Elgin Engineering and

I eventually joined Elgin to carry on

a contract for them and re-manage

their exposure into the sugar industry.

During the course of this two-year

contract I carried out the duties I was

requested to do by the management

and then I saw an opportunity to

remove their construction division

from the Elgin Group and I pursued

and concluded a management buyout.

That’s where Elcon was born. From

there, and with many years of hard

work, I’ve progressively built up the

company, modernising aggressively up

to and including 2012 when we became

part of Concord.”

54 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

C o n s t r u c t i o n





As their banking partner, we congratulate Elcon Cranes on their on-going

success, from humble beginnings to the cutting-edge services they provide


Nedbank can also be of service to you, your business, your staff and your

household through our decentralised service model, which empowers

our regions to offer customised end-to-end business solutions and quick

turnaround times.

For more information please contact business manager Daryl Norris at


Nedbank Business Banking – partnering for growth for a greater South Africa.


Nedbank Limited Reg No 1951/000009/06. Authorised

financial services and registered credit provider (NCRCP16)

Going forward Mr Wilkinson is

sure that the combined group will

remain at the “cutting edge” of new

crane technology and continue its

commitment to customer service

through strong business values

and its core business principal of

understanding the customers’

needs “holistically”.

“That’s absolutely vital and

over the years we’ve invested in

such technology,” he says. “For

instance, we have cranes with

bluetooth capabilities which enable

the operator to utilise a portable

terminal and walk around the

machine during set up to ensure 100

percent safety.”

Over the past year Elcon has

introduced four new machines to its

fleet – three Liebherr all terrain cranes

and a new Zoomlion 35t rough terrain

machine. Anglo-V3 has purchased

12 machines, spread across various

brands and applications.

Both companies

are managed by


directors and our aim

is to generically

grow the group to one

of the largest

and best crane hire

companies in

Southern Africa”

The purchases were primarily driven

by “clients increased demand for

this size and type of machine,”

Wilkinson says.

An ultra marathon runner and

keen athlete, we believe his retirement

certainly won’t hold him back.

Mr Wilkinson can be proud of

what he has built and we’re sure

he’ll continue to play an active role in

developing Concord.

“We’re excited by the future,” van

Staden concludes. “Both companies

are managed by entrepreneurial

directors and our aim is to generically

grow the group to one of the largest

and best crane hire companies in

Southern Africa, and in so doing

ensure a strong financial stability to

the benefit of its shareholders and

loyal employees.”

To learn more visit

www.elconcranes.co.za and





Mantrac Nigeria

Mantrac Nigeria distributes and supports the full range of

Caterpillar construction machines, power systems and material

handling equipment. We talk to strategic planning and marketing

manager James Agama.

Writer Chris Farnell

Project manager James Mitchell

56 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.COm

C o n s t r u c t i o n

g up

he Mantrac Group

is the sole dealer of

Caterpillar products

across the African

continent and Mantrac

Nigeria is their Nigerian division. This

unique market position has meant

that for over 60 years the company

has been closely involved with the

vast majority of major construction

jobs across Nigeria.

Providing sales and rentals of

Caterpillar products, as well as

maintenance, servicing and onsite

training for the same, Mantrac

Nigeria has fortified a dominant

position in the construction and

earthmoving markets, and it is

proving increasingly essential for the

power generation needs of the oil

and gas sector.

It’s hardly a surprise that the

last decade has seen a 300 percent

rate of growth as the company has

expanded to ten separate branches

around the country.

And Mantrac Nigeria is needed now

more than ever, as Nigeria is in need

of a huge overall to its infrastructure.

“There is a heavy, heavy

infrastructure deficit in our

country with regards to power

and construction,” says Mantrac

Nigeria’s strategic planning and

marketing manager James Agama.

Poor infrastructure naturally

makes business more difficult.

“Like most multinationals in our

country, we find the infrastructure

can be very challenging,” Agama

admits. “The operating cost is

high. Also there are limits on the

resources which are available.”

Mantrac Nigeria has placed itself

as a crucial resource in correcting

that deficit across the country.

“We are partners in developing

the infrastructure of this country

and we’re looking at new ways to

make things better,” Agama tells us.

“We’re doing all that we can to help







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this isn’t a fly by night operation

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know that we are willing to help and

be involved as much as possible to

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be,” Agama says proudly. “We are

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We’re doing all

that we can to

help the country.

Presently, for example,

we’ve partnered with

Setraco in one of the

major infrastructure

projects in the Niger

Delta area”




We’re here for the long haul, we’re

committed to Nigeria, and we know that

we are willing to help and be involved as

much as possible to get the country where it

wants to be”

best value for money it can from its

brands, fuelled by well built one-onone

relationships with customers.

But that’s just the beginning.

talking to Agama it is abundantly

clear that he is very excited for

the future. the company has been

building an increasingly significant

presence in the power generation

sector, which he believes holds

great future potential, and the

company’s consistent support of

new infrastructure is going to pay off

as the demand for more industrial

equipment continues to grow.

However none of that is worth

anything if the company is not able

to find and retain the skilled people

who make that business happen.

Perhaps the single key facet of the

business is the company’s people

management. While being the sole

provider of Caterpillar products to

the region gives Mantrac a market

advantage, it’s one that’s worth

nothing without the company’s

extremely knowledgeable staff.

that staff is able to offer exemplary

service, with every member of

the team possessing an in depth

knowledge of the Caterpillar

products they sell. this is thanks

to a highly selective recruitment

process and the company’s ability to

take advantage of comprehensive

product training.

“We use a mix of direct

recruitment and agencies,

depending on what sort of position

we are looking to fill. As well as our

superb recruitment processes, we

are working to bring in new roles

such as my own strategy planning

position. Meanwhile we are also

acquiring new platforms that make

it easier for our staff and customers

to interact, such as the newly

launched SalesForce CRM system

we recently installed which will

make those relationships stronger,”

Agama tells us.


C o n s t r u c t i o n

At the forefront of its strategy is

a world class staff development

programme. “We pride ourselves on

providing a training programme for

a lot of people. The Mantrac group

runs training across the many different

countries in which we operate,”

Agama says. “Our courses are tailored

towards improving the person as well

as what they bring to the business. We

also work hard to ensure that we are

offering the best in terms of benefit

and welfare packages, so that after

we’ve invested in our staff they want

to stay with the business.”

However, as well as benefiting from

global training resources, Mantrac

also places a great deal of value

in local knowledge. Agama points

out, “We have a global practice but

we also rely heavily on the local

knowledge. We hire staff that have

lived in this country and understand

the local environment.”

That understanding is becoming

especially important as the markets

in Nigeria are in a constant state

of change, especially with other

international brands attempting to get

a foothold on the market.

“The competitive landscape has

changed over the years,” Agama

admits. “There are new brands

constantly popping up. In particular

there are a lot of Chinese brands in

Nigeria now. Possibly the biggest

challenge we’ve faced are that the

market is changing on a regular

basis. To combat these new realities

we are looking at how we define

our processes, how we meet the

customer and how we can provide

new products that allow us to fight on

quality not affordability.”

It’s a strategy that’s paying off.

“The last 12 months have been

better than the previous year, there’s

interest coming in on all fronts as a

result of the investment we’ve put

into the business finally beginning to

see results in terms of new products

and processes,” Agama says. “We’ve

been here for over 60 years, and

in most developing countries the

infrastructure still needs a lot of work.

We’re hoping as a business to help our

country reach the infrastructure levels

every Nigerian desires. That is why in

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heavily in the business.”

To learn more visit




Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital

Caring Kenya


62 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

H e a l t h c a r e

Africa Outlook speaks to

Dr John Kibosia of Moi Teaching

and Referral Hospital about what

it’s like operating Kenya’s second

largest referral hospital.

Writer Hannah Eiseman-Reynard

Project manager Eddie Clinton

he Moi Teaching and

Referral Hospital

located in Eldoret,

Kenya - home to

Kenya’s fourth

international airport - has nearly 100

years of history having been founded

in 1917 as the Native Cottage hospital

with a bed capacity of 60. Today, it

has a bed capacity of 550 serving the

larger Western and Nyanza provinces

in Kenya and its surrounding areas of

Kapenguria, Kapsowar, Kitale, Nandi,

Kapsabet and Tambach, as well as

offering medical education through

its association with Moi University, a

major development.

The hospital has certainly moved

with the times – and we’re happy to

bring you its story because, as it has

evolved, it has helped to transform

healthcare in Kenya.

Let’s go back to 1990 when its

association with Moi University began.

“Moi has been at the forefront of

training. The facility was upgraded

to a hospital to be a training facility

for the medical students,” explains

Dr John Kibosia of Moi Teaching and

Referral Hospital. “The link has been

good because so far whenever Moi

Hospital University is mentioned –

it is an honour. It is the university

which has made the hospital.”

The upgrade did not come without

its own challenges and, as the centre

upgraded and grew, the patient

numbers grew even more rapidly.

“Previously referral cases had

to be taken to Kenyatta national

Hospital but when Moi became a

referral hospital there was a crunch

upon it being declared as a referral

hospital,” says Dr Kibosia.

As the second-largest referral

hospital in Kenya, Moi’s catchment

area became a staggering 16.24

million people. Kenya’s total

population is 38.2 million.

It also has international patients.

“People come from up to Sudan and



Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital

Uganda, some come from as far as

Tanzania – the hospital caters for a much

bigger population,” says Dr Kibosia

The hospital has 3,200 staff, 800

beds and, of course, a catchment

area of 16.24 million. With these

numbers its little surprise that

keeping up with the needs of the

patients is a challenge the hospital

cannot always meet. In instances of

political unrest – such as the election

violence which erupted in 2002 – Moi

has struggled to deliver care to all

the people who need it.

One problem is the resources

which the hospital has. Though the

hospital was initially working very

well, the transition period of 2002

brought problems.

“The Government decided to

develop cold feet on this hospital.

There were deals that were not

forthcoming. The hospital could

have been rendered useless – service

delivery went down and most referrals

People come

from up to

Sudan and Uganda,

some come from

as far as Tanzania –

the hospital caters

for a much

bigger population”

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©Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital/Facebook

64 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

H e a l t h c a r e



Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital

were going to Kenyatta hospital,” says

Dr Kibosia. “Moi hospital had been

rendered insignificant and most of

the talent was lost, but that is turning

around currently.”

Luckily, with a fresh intake of trainee

doctors, the hospital is never without

human resources, and the experience

on the staff is building back up.

But the challenges don’t end there.

Indeed, though it is better equipped

than many hospitals in the region, Moi

struggles with the quality of many of

its machines.

“The CT motion analysis and dialysis

machines are not state-of-the-art.

Most machines are second hand. They

are what people have been given,”

says Dr Kibosia.

And it gets worse. In a population

where the average wage is below

one U.S. dollar a day, a CT scan costs

around 12,000 Kenyan shillings (while

dialysis costs 20,000 shillings per

visit), so accessing the medicine at

all is something only a fraction of the

population can afford.

With cancer care the picture is

even bleaker.

“There is a very big challenge with

cancer – those who can afford care are

very, very rich. Cancer is killing, killing,

killing people. In this level of poverty

people die,” says Dr Kibosia.

He tells us the hospital needs

a specialist cancer care ward.

Currently, cancer patients who can

afford to travel go further afield

for treatment, while those who

can’t are treated in among the

other patients with no specialist

care available.

“A cancer unit would be a very great

blessing,” Dr Kibosia tells us. Currently

situation is often little more than

palliative care. “It’s said it’s a relief

when you get HIV/AIDS rather than

dying of cancer,” he says.

Another challenge the hospital

has faced is shortages of some

drugs and medicines.

“Most of the drugs patients get

from the hospital pharmacy, but the

hospital pharmacy is not that well

stocked with the rarer drugs,” Dr

Kibosia says.

The situation is not uniform across

all diseases. Tuberculosis drugs, for

instance, are readily available thanks

to a combination of government

initiatives and U.S. aid.

Anti-retroviral drugs for HIV/AIDS

too are made more available by

NGOs, however, the steady supply of

medicine to the hospital is an ongoing

challenge, and one of the main reasons

for that is corruption.

“Corruption is like a cancer in our

society. Some doctors get drugs and

sell them to their own pharmacies.

Corruption is quite rampant. I’m not

afraid to say that,” says Dr Kibosia.

In some instances drugs which are

ordered are not delivered, in other

cases they go missing after they have

arrived at the hospital.

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Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital

“Doctors receive drugs from a

medical assignment and give them to

specific pharmacies. The corruption

is a social scourge. We need a

hospital to be a one-stop service

with all the medicines.”

One reason corruption is so rife is

the poverty and it can affect more than

just the medical supplies.

“The professional misconduct

comes about because of corruption.

We need an independent body to

regulate care and drugs,” says Dr

Kibosia. “In Kenya you can get people

working as doctors who were not

trained as doctors.”

While a teaching hospital is unlikely

to have that particular problem, Moi

hospital does have difficulty holding on

to trained doctors once they graduate.

“They could be accommodated

at the hospital but they seek jobs

elsewhere. They say our government is

not paying enough.”

Some staff wages are assigned

by the Government and some are

assigned by the Centre for Disease

Control (CDC), but this piecemeal

approach does not always work

efficiently and Dr Kibosia fully supports

increased wages.

“At times people prefer going to

private hospitals because their service

delivery is high. There is less corruption

and drugs don’t go missing.”

Despite the many challenges Moi

Teaching and Referral Hospital faces,

Dr Kibosia is confident he knows what

some of the solutions to this situation

should be.

“Corruption has eaten each and

every institution. That’s why each

and every organisation needs an

independent body.”

He wants an independent

medical professional not related

to the government overseeing the

organisation to maintain

professional standards.

In addition, he recommends

the setting up of smaller branch

68 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

H e a l t h c a r e

hospitals in Kisumu and Nyanza province “so that the

sub-branches can get direct help. It was just my humble

submission that those can be set up to even the

service delivery.”

Other investments which would help patient care

immeasurably – as well as improvements in hospital

equipment – are the specialised cancer care unit as well as a

more specialised children’s hospital.

Currently Moi Teaching and Referrals Hospital offers

paediatrics, but would benefit from more specialised HIV/

AIDS paediatrics.

Despite all that, Moi has achieved many great things and

has always been at the forefront of training and has the

best tropical medicine department in Kisumu.

In addition to plans for better patient care, Moi Teaching

and Referrals Hospital works to give more back to the

community it is based in.

One example Dr Kibosia gives us is the Boresha

Educational Empowerment group – boresha means

‘betterment’ in Swahili – and the Education Volunteers

project which empowers teenage girls.

The teenage pregnancy rate is very high, and with so

much poverty in the population that young women often

have to choose between spending money on sanitary

towels or 2kg of maize to feed them and their families –

many girls regularly miss out on schooling as soon as they

hit puberty.

The Education Volunteers project aims to combat this

by empowering and encouraging girls in their education,

as well as providing practical support such as antiretroviral

drugs for HIV positive students.

“It is a brilliant scheme,” Dr Kibosia says.

We spoke to the doctor on a Monday – he told us the

Friday before he’d been at a prayer day with the students

ahead of their national exams.

Many of the healthcare workers at the hospital come

from the local community and Moi Hospital is helping to

both empower its local community as well as train up a new

generation of staff.

Moi Teaching and University Hospital is facing some

huge challenges but Dr Kibosia is facing them head-on and

remains resolute and upbeat.

From 7-12 December the Boresha Educational

Empowerment group will be running an educational festival

at Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital, with inspirational

and expert speakers.

Those interested in sponsoring or collaborating with the

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kenya’s insurance sector is growing. Industry veteran tom gichuhi,

the CEO of the Association of kenya Insurers, gives us his insight.

Writer Ian Armitage

Project manager Sheridan Halls

n August the

Association of

kenya Insurers (AkI)

announced that

members’ profits

grew 53 percent last year, helped by

increased investment income from the

domestic stock market that recovered

from a slump in 2011. Indeed, kenya’s

46 insurers posted a pre-tax profit of

Sh14.8 billion last year.

Following the announcement, we

caught up with AkI’s CEO tom gichuhi

and asked him a few questions about

kenya’s insurance industry. Here’s

what he had to say...

Tell me more about Kenya’s insurance

market. What are the main challenges

facing the industry?

the challenges facing the kenyan

insurance market include, but aren’t

limited to, very stiff competition due

to the presence of a large number of

underwriters (most of whom are almost

of the same size in terms of market

share) coupled with little product

differentiation. The above factors have

led to very stiff competition which has

led to unsustainable price cutting, low

levels of awareness of the importance

of insurance among potential

consumers of insurance, low disposable

incomes and therefore inability to

purchase insurance, which in most

cases is not regarded as a necessity, and

fraud which ends up making insurance

claims sometimes unmanageable. this

has the potential of making insurance

expensive as underwriters try to

balance their books.

The market is characterised by low

penetration. How as an industry is that

being tackled?

the industry is tackling low penetration

through increased consumer education

mainly conducted by AkI and the

Insurance Regulatory Authority


F i n a n c e

(IRA), market penetration through

introduction of new products that

resonate well with the consuming

public, simplification of insurance

contracts to make them consumer

friendly, diversification of distribution

channels e.g., bancassurance, and

market diversification, e.g. micro

insurance for the low income earners

and the informal sector and introduction

of agriculture insurance.

Most uptake in insurance is in motor

insurance, fire industrial and personal

injury. Why is that?

That’s right; most uptake in insurance

is in motor, fire industrial and medical.

There are good reasons for this. First

of all, motor third party is compulsory.

This ensures that all motor vehicles must

carry the minimum motor third party

insurance cover. Secondly, purchase

of motor vehicles in most instances is

financed by banks and employers hence

the requirement for a comprehensive

insurance cover to protect the interest

of the financier. When it comes to fire

industrial insurance, it is purchased

by corporate organisations as a risk

management tool. They are in business

and therefore the need to protect their

assets. They are also a lot more aware of

the importance of insurance. A lot

of them are also financed and therefore

insurance is a source of security. Medical

insurance, meanwhile, has in the last five

years or so become the fastest growing

segment. This is purely informed by the

ever escalating cost of healthcare in this

country. Ultimately however, only about

seven percent of Kenyans have one form

of insurance or another.

Is the lack of savings culture in Kenya a

concern for insurers?

It is, but that said, we also have to

appreciate that one can only save

available disposable income. Around

half of Kenyans live below the poverty

line and you cannot save what you do

not have. However there are concerted

efforts to encourage those who have, to

save more preferably through insurance.

Tax incentives would certainly encourage

more savings through purchase of long

term insurance and pension products.

Tell me more about the legislative

environment. Is it condusive for

insurers to do business?

The current legislative framework

is not robust enough to encourage

accelerated growth of insurance.

We certainly need to do more. We

have to come up with legislation that

encourages investors to invest more

in insurance, one that encourages the

consumers to buy more insurance

through tax incentives and other

benefits, and one that promotes good

corporate governance so that the

image of the industry is improved so

as to attract more customers. There

are some proposed changes in the

Finance Bill 2013. One of the changes

requires that persons registered under

the insurance Act charge and remit a

ten percent excise duty to the Kenya

Revenue Authority on all fees and

charges levied on services offered. It is

a very ambiguous piece of legislation

and we are already lobbying against it.

The other new proposed amendment

requires insurance companies to pay

insurance claims within 90 days of

reporting of such claims. We are also

lobbying to have that proposal changed

by way of wording so as to require

that claims are paid with 90 days of

submission of the requisite documents.

The industry is also facing a mounting

skills shortage. How can that be


Shortage of skills is only in certain

specialised areas such as actuarial,

pension, marine and aviation

underwriting, agriculture insurance

underwriting and claims processing, and

oil and gas insurances. IRA is already

on a programme to train actuaries

and AKI has been actively engaged in

skills upgrade for pension and marine

underwriters. Individual insurance

companies are also aggressively involved

in training their personnel in technical,

managerial and marketing skills.

Tell me more about the market

itself. Kenya’s insurance industry is

fragmented. Would you encourage

some consolidation?

Yes the Industry is probably

fragmented. We are almost at 50 in

number. Consolidation would help a lot

particularly in creating huge corporate

organisations that would not only

dictate the market trends and control

such vices as price cutting but which

will also enjoy economies of scale, thus

bring down the cost of insurance which

would ultimately encourage more

people to buy insurance hence improve

penetration. Consolidation has not

really taken root. But there are all the

indicators of mergers and buyouts. We

may have seen one or two but certainly

more are expected to come through. It

is a process that is going to take some

time but we are cetainly headed there.

Do you see a bright future for the

insurance market in Kenya?

There is a very bright future not only

for the insurance market in Kenya but

also for the entire financial services

sector. There is the expanded market

provided by the larger East African

Community with its 140 million

inhabitants, discovery of huge deposits

of oil and gas, a mining industry

just about to start thriving, huge

infrastructural projects in the areas

of road, railway, sea and airports,

electricity generation projects and a

rapidly growing middle class which

is the main driver of consumption

of products and services, insurance

included. The list is endless!

To learn more about AKI and

Kenya’s insurance industry visit






gA Insurance is a company

poised for growth says

CEO Vijay Srivastava.

Writer Ian Armitage

Project manager Sheridan Halls


f I N a N C E

he kenyan insurance

industry recorded 15

percent growth in the

first half of this year,

with premiums growing

to $744.7 million from $647 million in

the same period last year.

But, despite the growth, with an

increasing number of people buying

insurance, penetration is low and

the result is that competition in the

industry is fierce as licensed companies

compete for a limited market.

kenyans’ uptake of insurance cover,

both at corporate and personal level,

remains predominantly in the motor,

fire industrial and personal accident

(mainly group medical cover) classes.

“The main issue affecting us and the

industry in general is the unhealthy

competition and lack of self-discipline

among players,” says Vijay Srivastava,

cEO & Principal Officer, at GA

Insurance. “the companies are too

many for a relatively smaller market.

the penetration and awareness of

insurance is poor. the imbalance

between a regulated and free market

is a challenge. the crime related claims

are always on rise besides the motor

and Employers liability legal claims

and the industry is struggling to reduce

the fraudulent claims especially in the

motor classes.”

gA Insurance is one of the oldest

insurance companies operating in

kenya, underwriting all classes of

general insurance, including medical

and travel.

Formerly known as general

Accident Insurance Company of kenya

limited, having its parentage from

general Accident Insurance Uk, it was

incorporated as a kenyan insurance

company in 1979.

In 2006, the company was

acquired by the present owners,

who also own the renowned I&M

Bank group in kenya with interests

in banking, insurance, beverage

bottling and real estate. With new

ownership and new management,

the company’s profile changed and

it has been growing consistently

since 2007, maintaining a growth

of over 25 percent each year. this

resulted into repositioning of the

company in the kenya market and

prompted it to rebrand in 2009.

“Presently gA is the most

promising and one of the leading

companies in the market. It has

grown considerably since 2006,” says

Mr Srivastava. “gA’s key strength

is its people, the work culture and

quick adaptability for achieving

excellence. We are selling solutions

to customer needs and creating

viable options in the market. the

reputation of the shareholders of the

company and synergy with I&M Bank

group give us a lot of credibility and

good standing. We work with the

dual responsibility of living up to gA

and group’s brand.”

the gA brand is recognised as one

of kenya’s most reputable insurers.

Srivastava says the people in the

company have been “literally living

the corporate values to make it a

sustainable brand” and that gA has

been “focusing growth with profitability

towards long time sustainability”.

“this led the company to develop

one of the strongest financials in

the market in terms of top and

bottom line, assets, net equity,

large investments and high solvency

margin,” he says.

Over the last year gA has

recorded premium income growth

of over 30 percent.

Profits are also up. And new

ventures have been launched.

“this year we opened the gA life

Assurance Company having 100

percent ownership of gA Insurance,”

says Srivastava. “gA life got licensed

in June this year and has made a very

promising beginning especially in

the fund management, pensions and

group life.”



GA Insurance

Of course, with things growing quickly,

there are challenges.

“Handling the fast paced growth

in business and maintaining good

customer service and delivery are

certainly two of them. We had the

potential and ambition to make a

difference in the market but the

comfort is that we have much better

services as a bigger company than

what we used to have five years back.

The pain of implementation of the core

software system is now resulting in

good services to clients.”

There is plenty of room for

expansion, if you understand the

needs and challenges of Kenyans,

Srivastava says.

“Kenya’s insurance market has

enjoyed average growth rates of

between 18 and 20 percent and

insurance supervision is changing

from compliance based to risk based.

The regulator is very active and has

brought a number of guidelines for

better governance of the industry.

This has given us clearer road map in

managing the company.”

Kenya also has a growing number

of tech savvy young professionals

and this too is impacting the

business and leading to new channels

of distribution.

“The new generation is more

technology savvy with smartphones,

internet and social media,” says

Srivastava. “New distribution channels

are coming up like Bancassurance, other

agents like in travel/tourism with large

number of loyal retail and corporate

clientele, and increased use of credit/

debit and other smart cards. Increased

risk awareness about terrorism and

political violence and new finds in oil

and energy are interesting also and

will require specialised cover, capacity

and an expert technical knowledge of

the special insurance covers. We at GA

have geared up to these new trends

and are adaptable to the fast growing

needs of the customers. We are selling

74 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

f i n a n c e


never sleeps…

At Willis Re, we understand the challenges that keep you up at night.

Our passion makes for constant Reinventing, continuously

Rethinking and always providing Resilient Reinsurance solutions

to achieve peace of mind.

Willis Re (Pty) Ltd is an Authorised Financial Service Provider, Licence No. 24845.

1st Floor, Building 3, Inanda Greens Office Park, 54 Wierda Road West ,Wierda Valley, Sandton

Tel: +27 11 341 9600

travel insurance online and are in the

process of making our website more

interactive and of practical use to the

customer for their convenience. We

are already part of a bank and are

developing the bancassurance. We now

have a Life company in the group and

this will facilitate us to package many

new innovative products along with the

general and medical insurance covers

distributed through bancassurance. We

are aiming into building our capacity and

knowledge about the oil exploration

and energy sector. We also have an

integrated software system for both

general and medical insurance. This

enables us to handle the large volumes

with controls and efficiency ensuring

better customer services.”

GA dreams big. And it has paid off.

From a moderate $6.5 million GWP in

2006 it will close the year 2013 at about

$36 million GWP.

“We recently finished our strategy

meeting and have put in place a long

GA Insurance is

one of the oldest

insurance companies

operating in Kenya”

and short term plan,” says Srivastava.

“We are still looking for more high

growth in business for the next three

years in order to further improve our

market share.

“We have a very high solvency

margin, good growth and liquidity.

Our investments are quite diversified

and safe. We are making some new

investments in real estate and regional

12323_ADVERT_RISKSA_AW.indd 1 27/08/2013 16:42:12

expansion of our operations. After

investing this year in GA Life Assurance

in Kenya, we are very soon opening in

Tanzania with 67 percent share of GA

Kenya. We also have plans to expand

into few more countries in East Africa.

“We always love to dream and

implement it into reality. I will not ask

for any shortcuts or easy deals that will

make us complacent.”

GA Insurance was awarded General

Insurer of the Year 1st Runner-up 2012

by Think Business earlier this year – a

remarkable achievement given there

are 38 general insurers in Kenya – and in

2011 it was named second runner up for

Socially Responsible Corporate.

“We have been doing a lot of work

in CSR by contributing two percent of

our net profits every year,” concludes

Srivastava. “We are focusing mainly in

education, clean water and sanitation

among others.”

To learn more visit www.gakenya.com.




Altrisk is a specialist long term risk product provider

whose reputation has been built around superior

underwriting expertise.

Writer Chris Farnell

Project manager Sheridan Halls

76 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.COm

f i n a n c e

Maintaining a





n life the unexpected

happens and while you

can’t protect yourself

against every potential

hazard, you can take

sensible measures to minimise the

financial impact of the unexpected.

This is why long term risk cover is

important to help safeguard you and

your family’s financial security. But

what happens if you struggle to get

insurance because you have a chronic

health condition or dangerous hobby?

That’s how Altrisk, an operating

division of the Hollard Life Assurance

company came about.

Altrisk was the brainchild of two

individuals, an underwriter, Dalene

Allen, and Nick Stern, an actuary.

They started out with the knowledge

that there was a large amount of

life insurance business being turned

away as uninsurable and they

believed that with the right approach

anything is insurable at the right

price, terms and conditions.

With the backing of Hollard and

Hannover Re they created the business

that became Altrisk. In just 14 years

the company has grown to hold a

seven percent market share in a tough

industry with many competitors.

Altrisk has over 177,000 policies in

force, with R226 billion sum insured.

They started out as a niche

underwriter and quickly gained a

reputation for insuring impaired lives

– the ones the industry traditionally

had no appetite for. They created

a framework where they were able

to apply specialist underwriting and

policy structuring to people who

were otherwise uninsurable. As

their reputation grew they got more

and more standard life insurance,

based on their good service and

excellent underwriting.

Today Altrisk is known in the market

for its non-generalist approach and

ability to think outside the box about

individual life cover.

The benefit

allows a client

to boost their

financial protection

against cancer. It also

gives you complete

peace of mind that

you are fully covered

for cancer”

Managing director Michael Blain says

Altrisk was ahead of the curve when

life insurers started to unbundle life and

investment products. There had been a

long run of life insurance being sold as

a bundled investment, and customers

were complaining they weren’t getting

investment value out of these products.

So what Altrisk did was clearly separate

risk from investment business. “We’re a

pure risk underwriter, so policy holders

are clear about what they’re buying,”

Blain says.

In 14 years the insurer has gone

on to launch a range of firsts in the

traditionally conservative life market.

Its Early Cancer Cover, South Africa’s

very first early cancer insurance

product, is one of these firsts.

78 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

f i n a n c e

As a specialist

risk only

underwriter, we’re

competing with the

biggest companies

in the industry and

distribution is

becoming a battle

of scale”

Altrisk’s head actuary Ryan

Chegwidden says the benefit provides

cover for early or Stage 0 cancers,

which are not covered by critical

illness benefits.

Chegwidden says statistics indicate

that there is a great need in the life

insurance market for this type of

benefit – according to reinsurance

figures one in six people is diagnosed

with early cancer.

Altrisk’s claim statistics mirrors

this trend. “We noticed an increase

in clients being diagnosed with early

stage cancer and Altrisk’s claims

queries showed that many clients

thought they have complete cancer

cover, when in fact they don’t,” he

says. “This is why we decided to create

this product.”

In October Altrisk further expanded

its cover for cancer when it launched

an all- inclusive comprehensive cancer

benefit. Comprehensive Cancer Cover

is a standalone benefit that provides

complete cover for a wider range

of cancers, right from Stage 0 (early

cancer) to Stage 4.

“This is the distinctive feature of

our new benefit - it includes cover for

early cancers, which are excluded from

traditional critical illness insurance,”

Chegwidden says. “The benefit

allows a client to boost their financial

protection against cancer. It also gives

you complete peace of mind that you

are fully covered for cancer.”

He says Altrisk’s underwriting

expertise makes it possible to develop

such benefits. The insurer’s underwriting

team has more than 250 years combined

experience. Altrisk’s individual approach

to underwriting means that policies are

underwritten based on the customer’s

specific needs, rather than simply

following a checklist to see which

premade product they’re going to sell.

Managing director Michael Blain

says Altrisk’s recognised key strength

is its underwriting skill, and that

comes from a philosophy of flexibility

around risk based on the unique

characteristics of the case. “Our

underwriters have a reinsurance

experience, so they understand the

risk philosophy behind reinsurance

underwriting as well as working

directly with the market,” Blain says.

Recently there’s been some changes

at Altrisk. The insurer’s parent company,

Hollard Life Assurance, bought out

the last of its minority shareholders,

bringing Altrisk entirely under their

ownership. Blain explains that Altrisk

was always able to underwrite and

administer on behalf of Hollard.

“As the business grew there

were frictional costs for running the

business as a separate entity,” he

says. “The important component of

this decision is that Altrisk has its own

management infrastructure, ways of

doing things and our own brand. We

still operate as a separate entity.”

This change marks the beginning

of a bold new era for Altrisk, but as

the company grows and enters new

markets it faces new challenges as well.

“We’re facing two main

challenges,” Blain explains. “The

first is the transition from the owner/

founder era that every start up

goes through, to a more mature

and corporate business. This is

emotional and challenging in terms

of succession and maintaining the

character of the business, while

undergoing these changes.”

Blain says the other big challenge

is distribution.

“As a specialist risk only underwriter,

we’re competing with the biggest

companies in the industry and

distribution is becoming a battle of

scale,” he says.

Their biggest challenge is

distributing products in a changing

distribution landscape.

“We’re looking into improving

our partnership models and general

agency contracts where tied agents

can get a quote from Altrisk because





SCOR Africa is a wholly owned

subsidiary of SCOR SE, a global

reinsurer. Based in Johannesburg,

SCOR Africa provides life and non-life

reinsurance support to insurers in

sub-Saharan Africa. SCOR Africa has

an A+ financial strength credit rating

from S&P.

Since its inception in 2009, SCOR Africa

has grown significantly and is expected

to write just under R1 billion in gross

premium income in 2013. We provide

product development, pricing and risk

capacity support to insurers in sub-

Saharan countries for health, group and

individual life products. We are actively

growing our non-life business and are

currently reviewing opportunities in

several African countries.

Bernard Ross: Managing Director-life,


Mohamed Motala: Managing Director

Non-life, mmotala@scor.com

terry Ray: CEO, tray@scor.com

Tel: +27 11 507 3900


we’re servicing niches the big

companies simply can’t,” he says.

It’s in these niches that Altrisk sees

its future.

“We’ve made a decision that we’re

not a mainstream provider trying to be

everything to everybody,” Blain says.

But this decision comes with its own set

of challenges. “that means we need

to carve out further niches in our risk

pocket where we can develop products

in market segments overlooked by the

mainstream players,” he explains.

Many risk product providers go for

volume over specialisation, which means

they compete aggressively on price.

“But we operate beyond this and I think

there are huge opportunities for those

who can segment categories of risk and

consumers and develop products that

come at those segments with high value

and niche appeal,” says Blain.

to learn more visit www.altrisk.co.za.


f I N a N C E

Pub DK 96 x 160 mm_Mise en page 1 29/10/2013 13:41 Page 1


on Track















Download the plan and access the

latest SCOR financial information on

your iPad


We’re a pure

risk underwriter,

so policy holders are

clear about what

they’re buying”




PetroSA continues “to perform admirably”, achieving a R593

million net profit for the 2012/13 financial year.

Writer Ian Armitage

Project manager Sheridan Halls





oil company

etroSA is South Africa’s

national oil company

and it plays what its

website describes as an

“instrumental role in

the country’s transformation through

a range of activities that span the

petroleum chain”.

It is a giant. The question is where

to start. Of course, it heavily involved

in the exploration and production

of oil and natural gas, selling

petrochemical products to South

Africa’s major oil companies and

exporting petrochemical products

to the international markets. In

1992 it famously started operating

the world’s first gas-to-liquid (GTL)

refinery at Mossel Bay – and that

refinery remains the third largest

among the five now operating across

the globe.

According to its website, PetroSA’s

core business activities are “the

exploration and production of oil

and natural gas”; “the participation

in, and acquisition of, local as well as

international upstream petroleum

ventures”; “the production of synthetic

fuels from offshore gas at one of the

world’s largest GTL refineries”; “the

development of domestic refining and

liquid fuels logistical infrastructure”;

and “the marketing and trading of oil

and petrochemicals”.

“PetroSA operates the FA-EM,

South Coast gas fields as well

as the Oribi and Oryx oil fields.

The producing gas fields provide

feedstock to the Mossel Bay GTL

refinery,” the company says. “Outside

South Africa, the company has

exploration acreage in Equatorial

Guinea and Namibia.

“PetroSA’s GTL refinery produces

ultra-clean, low-sulphur, low-aromatic

synthetic fuels and high-value products

converted from natural methane-rich

gas and condensate using a unique

GTL Fischer Tröpsch technology. Key

commodities produced include






unleaded petrol, kerosene (paraffin),

diesel, propane, liquid oxygen and

nitrogen, distillates, eco-fuels and

alcohols. Its world-class synthetic fuels

and petrochemicals are marketed

internationally,” it continues.

Project Ikhwezi, the flagship

offshore development to produce

and supply gas feedstock to the

company’s GTL refinery, is scheduled

to come onstream in 2013 and is

“set to extend the refinery´s life

and consolidate PetroSA’s position

at the heart of South Africa´s

transformation,” the company says.

“At the same time, we are

vigorously pursuing new investment

opportunities across Africa as part

of our commitment to supporting

the continent´s accelerating

development,” its website adds.


This is a good point at which to

introduce PetroSA’s vision 2020 which

is to “become a fully integrated,

commercially competitive national

oil company, supplying at least 25

percent of South Africa’s liquid fuel

needs” by, you guessed it, 2020.

“We aim to achieve this by

sustaining the Mossel Bay GTL

refinery as a profitable operation

and use it as a platform to sustain

our company; growing our company

into a significant industry player,

while ensuring security of energy

supply for the country; transforming

the company, the sector and

society; and ensuring that the

above are carried out in line with

the highest safety, health, quality

and environmental standards,” the

company says.

Rarely do words, so long ago

spoken - in 1770 - so far away,

have such resonance with an

organisation’s service posture as

the words spoken by John Adams,

America’s first vice president and

second president.

He posited that “whatever may

be our wishes, our inclinations, or

the dictates of our passions, they

cannot alter the state of facts and

evidence.” He could as well have

been talking about the raison d’etre

of our company.

We are wholly devoted to the notion

of uncovering facts and producing

evidence for the purpose of

informing, formulating, monitoring,

evaluating and implementing public

policy decisions, improving public

management, civic relationships

and commerce.

Our globally benchmarked

methodologies, tools and techniques

are supported by over a century of

practiced skills and experience of

our principal officers who guide our

service theatres of advisory, project

management and monitoring and

evaluation services.

While we are based at the southernmost

tip of Africa, our outlook

is global. Our consultants are

multinational, multilingual and


We hold ourselves out to serve

everywhere and anywhere

development thought, word or

action is desired and welcomed.

It will be our eternal pleasure to

welcome you into our growing

community of satisfied clients.

Tel +27 21 460 0435

Email info@developmentnomics.co.za


84 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

f e a t u r e





And despite volatile macroeconomic

conditions, it continues

to “perform admirably”, achieving

a R593 million net profit for the

2012/13 financial year.

That profit though was much

lower than the 2012 reported profit

of R1.2 billion.

It blamed the sluggish

performance on challenging

macro-economic conditions, lowerthan-anticipated

production at

the Mossel Bay GTL refinery and

increased operating costs.

“The Group’s financial position

remains strong with total assets

of R34. 2 billion and a cash balance

of R7.4 billion,” Webster Fanadzo,

PetroSA’s Acting Chief Financial

We are vigorously

pursuing new

investment opportunities

across Africa as part of

our commitment to

supporting the

continent´s accelerating


Officer, said in a statement. “An

aggressive capital expansion

programme, which includes the

Project Ikhwezi offshore development

project, and the envisaged acquisition

of a downstream operation, will

significantly change this scenario,

as the Group is set to move from

its current low-geared position to

one in which it takes on more loan

financing,” he added.

And there were many positives.

For instance, PetroSA significantly

increased its revenue from R14.4

billion to R19.6 billion – the

weakness of the rand against major

currencies, improved local trading of

finished products and the addition

of new revenues from PetroSA’s

86 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

E n e r g y



acquisition of oil reserves in Ghana

during September 2012 all playing a

significant part.

During 2012/13, the group invested

R3.7 billion on Project Ikhwezi, up

from R601 million in the previous

financial year.

Ms Nosizwe Nokwe, the PetroSA

Group CEO, said the increase in

capital expenditure on projects

would in the short-term result in a

diminished bottom-line. She however

remains confident that in the longterm

these initiatives would deliver

sustainable returns.

“A very notable success over

the past year, and in support of

PetroSA’s long-term strategy, is

the R232 million operating profit

This impressive


increase of 50 percent

signifies PetroSA’s

ongoing commitment

to economic


contribution, during the second

half of the financial year, resulting

from the acquisition of oil reserves

and related production in Ghana,”

she said.

PetroSA’s payments to

Broad-Based Black Economic

Empowerment (BBBEE) suppliers

with a minimum of 25.1 percent

black shareholding increased to R4.3

billion, in the reporting period, up

from R2.8 billion in the prior year.

“This impressive year-on-year

increase of 50 percent signifies

PetroSA’s ongoing commitment

to economic empowerment,” the

company said.

To learn more visit www.petrosa.co.za.



Castrol South Africa




E n e r g y


Castrol South Africa has been

making oil since men have

been making cars.

Writer Chris Farnell

Project manager Sheridan Halls

hen you’re driving

your car it’s possible

you don’t spend a

great deal of time

thinking about the

engine lubricant. It’s an essential

part of your engine, sure, but it’s like

the margarine in a sandwich - you

don’t tend to think of it as the most

essential component.

And yet Castrol knows that for an

engine to work to the absolute best of

its potential you need an oil that has

been developed alongside the engine

itself. That’s what it has been doing for

over a century.

“We’re a global company that’s been

around over 100 years and we continue

to shape the whole industry,” explains

Castrol South Africa’s marketing director,

Shren Moodley. “We’re about driving

new technology and leading the agenda

for our market sector. We work in the

automotive, the industrial, aviation,

marine, and mining sectors. We’ve got

a wide portfolio and a depth of over 100

years experience. There simply aren’t

many businesses in the market that can

match us for specialisation or longevity.”

Castrol uses its experience to create

a top of the line product.

“We’re a premium brand and a

market leader,” Moodley says. “We’re

slightly more expensive than most

products on the market, but what most

people don’t know is that we invest

that money right back into our research

and development. We continue to

keep our R&D breakthroughs going

forward, just as we have continued to

do that consistently for the last 100

years. Our products have often been

used at the forefront of world changing

breakthroughs such as land speed

records, marine racing and aviation.”

Castrol is able to do this because

of the close partnerships it has built

with its customers, over the years

developing products to specifically

meet the needs of the products those

customers are designing.



Castrol South Africa

“What sets us apart is that we

work very closely with our partner

companies,” Moodley says. “We’ve got

a long history with firms such as BMW

and Volkswagen and we’ve worked

with them developing technology to fit

their purposes. In terms of our depth

of partnerships we’re second to none.

There are more cars on the road in

Africa that are born with Castrol oil in

the engine than any other oil. So we

have a great relationship with those

manufacturers, they’re developing

their technology with us, from basic

cars to supercars such as Lamborghini.”

Of course, you don’t reach levels

of recognition and success like that

without having to overcome some

pretty big challenges along the way.

“Everything we do is done to

the very highest safety standards,”

Moodley points out. “Lubricant is

basically oil and we know that that can

have a big effect on the environment,

so we have to have very high standards

in terms of how it is used and how we

protect the environment.

“For example, if you look at

South Africa, we’re on the board of

the Rose Foundation, a non-profit

organisation that provides education

and encourages for used oil to be

collected and disposed of. We’ve been

at the forefront of that foundation

ensuring that lubricants are used in a

safe manner.

“When we supply lubricant we

have checklists and check points

to help customers be aware of

the safety issues. We’re driving

for safety measures such as

extinguishers. We start every

meeting talking about safety. And

we try to spread that attitude to

both our customers and suppliers.”

Along with an increasing

appreciation of the environmental

issues that their industry must

consider, Castrol is seeing other

changing attitudes among the markets

it traditionally sells to.

“We’ve had a very good year,

within our region one of the best

years ever,” Moodley says. “There’s

a strong move towards synthetic

products and synthetic oils are

where our strengths are. Many

manufacturers are demanding more

sophisticated lubricants and oils,

which plays more and more to our

advantage. That’s really helping

us out. We’re getting a really good

performance out of our products;

there are growth opportunities out

there that we’re looking at. It’s been

good all round.

“We’re also seeing the rise of the

emerging middle class in Africa,”

Moodley continues. “We’re working

to provide solutions for this rising

middle class that will be the future

of Africa.”

To take the best possible advantage

of those growth opportunities, Castrol

makes a concerted effort to employ

the best and brightest.


Emerging as a leader in the oil and

lubrication industry, we pride ourselves

on excellence and workmanship. Our

breakdown call-centre is managed by

qualified staff that excels in:

Efficiency – Our carefully designed

services and superior products are

manufactured and compiled with our

customers in mind.

Reliability - The quality of our product

range and our workmanship is

superior, ensuring confidence in our

products and service.

Being a one-stop provider – Our

expert design department ensures

that we supply exceptional quality

installations. We maintain, upgrade,

and provide consultation to ensure

cost-effectiveness, promote

productivity, reduce risks, and

increase safety.

Tel +27 11 395 2144

Email info@anikcorinstallations.com


Fury Motor Group

The Fury Motor Group opened

its doors with its first

dealership in 1995 and has

since grown into a twelve dealership

strong motor group, showcasing

SA’s leading motor brands. The Fury

Motor Group also has its own parts

distribution centre and wholesaler,

Fury Auto Parts, which supplies a

diverse grouping of motor retailers,

general purpose motor repairers and

panel beaters with a wide range of

leading brand genuine auto parts.

At our Fury Academy we provide the

highest level of technical training

and level-testing to up-and-coming

motor-trade technicians and autobody


For more information, visit


90 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

E n e r g y

Fury Motor Group – Proud Retailers of SA’s leading brands

Thanks to Castrol SA - Proud oil & lubricant supplier to the Fury Motor Group for 18 years



Castrol South Africa

McCarthy Motor Group

“Castrol is flexible in terms of how we

recruit,” Moodley says. “We will use

different techniques depending on

the position we have to fill. We have

a solid graduate recruit programme as

well as a direct entry system where we

recruit the right person for the right

job from other industries. We also have

a strong BBBEE push to find the best

black talent out there, and we’re at the

forefront of that.”

Castrol’s recruitment efforts also

benefit from the company’s links with

its parent company, BP.

“We share a lot of resources with

BP, so we enjoy a combination of the

cultures of Castrol and BP so that we

get a nice diversity within the company.

It helps that we also pay really well, so

that’s one way we recruit. We also have

programmes to identify high potential

talent for accelerated development.

Our development programme is

excellent because of the breadth of

BP we offer great sales, marketing and

finance expertise that can give you

great exposure to all kinds of skills

and disciplines.”

As well as recruiting the best available

staff from a wide array of backgrounds,

Castrol also takes measures to ensure

that each and every member of its

staff is up to date with the latest

breakthroughs in the field.

We’re a global

company that’s

been around over

100 years and we

continue to shape

the whole industry”

McCarthy Motor Group is proud to

be associated with Castrol, one of its

partners in automotive excellence.

The McCarthy Motor Group provides

a 360 degree vehicle sales and service

solution, with over 100 dealers

nationwide offering 27 major vehicle

brands. We can also handle all your

fleet requirements.

Our innovative online McCarthy Call-a-

Car service assists customers to locate

their vehicle. After that, our trained

and experienced techni-cians provide

exceptional after-sales service. We

stock only genuine spare parts and a

wide range of vehicle accessories. We

also sell - and can fit - most leading

tyre brands.

Our Club McCarthy loyalty programme

gives customers peace of mind, both

on and off the road.

For these reasons McCarthy has

remained one of South Africa’s leading

vehicle retailers for over 100 years.

Tel 0860 22 33 44


“We have a research centre in

Pangbourne in the UK that is constantly

developing new technologies and they

let us know what the latest engine

technology or lubricant technology

is,” Moodley says. “So right now for

instance the market is demanding

much more for much less, with engines

getting smaller and smaller as we try to

conserve fuel while still getting more

power out of the engine. This means

that there’s demand for a stronger

oil to keep up with those changes.

Meanwhile, we also work very closely

with our customers, so through our

partnerships we get a continuous

information feed regarding what

the latest developments are. We’re

seeing a positive future with plenty

of growth opportunities and we’re

confident we’ll be able to capture

those opportunities.”

To learn more visit www.castrol.com.

92 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

E N E r G y

Freightmax is a leading Supply Chain Partner to Castrol.

We are very proud to be associated with Castrol and value

the partnership that has been built over many years.

Email: brian.giddey@fmax.co.za

Tel: (+27) 31 274 9200





94 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

company name

96 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

f e a t u r e




After site acquisition it takes 60 days for a new tower

to be operational and it takes 30 days to acquire a

site, so it’s only 90 days total for a brand new site”

as well as on-site support in the

event of any problems to ensure the

guaranteed uptime.

Clients – telecoms companies –

use the towers on a rental and lease

basis and Helios Towers Nigeria has

achieved an impressive average 2.8

clients per tower referred to as

Colo Ratio.

“Essentially we are a telecoms

infrastructure company and we

invest in and manage our own

infrastructure,” says CEO Inder Bajaj.

Helios Towers Nigeria commenced

operations in 2006 and is the oldest

and largest independent tower

company in the country.

Key customers include global

system for mobile (GSM) companies

MTN, Airtel and EMTS.

The sector is growing and moving fast.

“Nigeria has around 25,000 towers

and the number is growing by three

to four thousand every year,” Mr

Bajaj says.

Helios Towers Nigeria owns and

runs around 1,300 and is putting up

around 600 new towers per annum.

“We are a Greenfield operation,

specialising in new sites and

putting them up speedily,” says

Bajaj. “After site acquisition it

takes 60 days for a new tower to

be operational and it takes 30 days

to acquire a site, so it’s only 90

days total for a brand new site. We

ensure delivery within five to six

days to be operational for second

and third customers. That is a key

differentiation we offer to our

customers apart from the uptime.

We have a sister company Helios

Towers Africa which operates in

Ghana, Tanzania and the DRC.”

According to Bajaj, many telecoms

companies in Nigeria are currently in

the process of “commencing their

process for sales and leaseback off

towers to tower companies” and it

“is expected to happen over the next

two years.”

98 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

f e a t u r e

Telenoetica limited

Telenoetica limited caters

to the business needs of

Telecom Operators, Tower

companies and OEMs, through

its services, solutions and products

offerings. Established in July 2009, we

have been recognized by our expertise

and intent to deliver world-class

solutions and services to our evergrowing

list of clients.

With a vision to add tangible value

to diverse sectors across Africa,

Telenoetica started business by

supplying LED (Light Emitting Diode)

based 48 V DC Aviation warning Lights

and Telecom site security lights for tier

1 telecom operators. Today we are the

single largest manufacturer/supplier of

LED based lights with more than 6000

such Lights installed in Year 2012/2013

and another 10000 Lights targeted

for sale in 2013/2014 including our

innovative 220 V AC powered LED lights

for other sectors such as Banking, Oil

and Gas and other SMEs.

Over the years we have added wide

range of Telecom Infrastructure

solutions which save energy and help

in containing OPEX such as Intelligent

Power Management and Hybrid

management systems, Li Ion

batteries, DC Generators, DC Air

conditioners, Modular Rectifiers and

Modular Invertors.

We started our telecom projects division

in 2011 and have since been performing

Turnkey Site Build services, Collocation

upgrades, Radio Access Technology

upgrades, RF optimization services, Site

Audit and advance site data collection

and Analytic services.

Telenoetica added the pioneer service

of telecom equipment Test and

Repair in 2013 and has quickly gained

immense confidence of Tier 1 telecom

operators and tower companies. While

in-country repairs looked a distant

dream, we championed this service

with a very high success rate of incountry


We also realized that sophisticated

OPEX saving concepts such as IPMS,

Solar Hybrid systems etc don’t succeed

because of lack of eco-system to

support their functioning. Telenoetica is

providing maintenance and operational

support services for these equipments

and creating the necessary workforce

aligned to its mission of:

Partnering with world class

technology enablers and professionals


Engaging and developing local

resources for efficient service delivery.

Email info@telenoetica.com

Email support@telenoetica.com





ghaddar machinery &

COMPANY nigeria ltd.

“It’s a win-win situation as it serves

our customers as a financing option

and also outsourcing to specialists

while they focus on other key

aspects of business,” he explains.

“As the market grows, along with

the leaseback sales of towers, we are

positioned to increase our market

percentage share dramatically. We

aim to run 20-30 percent of towers

in Nigeria and we aim for a very high

level of customer satisfaction.”

Helios Towers Nigeria currently runs

about eight percent of all telecoms

base station electronics in a country

whose telecoms market is growing

rapidly with respect to coverage into

new areas and as well as the capacity

growth with usage growth in voice

and data.

As the market

grows, along with

the leaseback sales of

towers, we are

positioned to increase

our market percentage

share dramatically”

We are pleased to introduce our





We are a world class Engineering

Company, specializing in the

distribution of PERKlNS Engines-UK

and LEROY SOMER Alternators-

France. We rank among the top

three distributors of Perkins

Engines, distributing over 20,000

units worldwide.

Our quest to become a clear leader

with international pedigree in the

sales of Industrial Generators cannot

be over-emphasized , as we have put

in place state of the art equipment

handled by well-trained and seasoned

professionals in the Engineering &

non Engineering fields.

With local distribution network

scattered all over Nigeria, we are

known to produce and service best

quality Generators at very affordable

prices prompting customer delight

and satisfaction at all times.

Innovation, quality and partnership

have always been at the core of

the corporate vision. This vision

helped the company widen

its portfolio of products while

maintaining a sound image and

unrivalled quality products.

Being part of the worldwide Perkins

distributors’ network dedicated to

providing a service of excellence to

the operators of the Perkins engines,

GHADDAR Machinery & CO Nig Ltd

maintains an inventory of Genuine

Perkins Spare Parts, renowned for

their reliability and durability.

Tel +234 1 7765926

Email drm@ghaddarnig.com


100 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

f e a t u r e




102 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

T E l E C O M S

To run a


service, grid

availability is vital”

Nigeria is the largest market in Africa

having the largest customer base

of 110 million, equating to over $10

billion revenue per annum.

the telecom penetration is at

around 60 percent and growing which

makes the market very attractive.

the secret to Helios tower Nigeria’s

success is that it hasn’t been afraid to

invest big in its own infrastructure.

“to run a successful service, grid

availability is vital,” Bajaj says. “In

Nigeria we have only two hours a day

of electricity on the grid – for 22 hours

a day we need to create our own

electricity and run generators.”

He goes onto explain some of the

current challenges facing the

industry: “the evolving industry

means that we have to work

around the infrastructure,” he

says. “Providing our own electricity

with systems of generators for

22 hours a day is no small task.

this is challenging and we see the

situation improving as the country

invests in power generation,

transmission and distribution. the

other challenge is multiple permits

and taxes by the local government,

state governments, as well as

federal government. the industry

and the regulator are working

towards telecoms being an essential

service and the simplification of

permits and taxes.

“Another challenge faced in recent

times is security in select areas of the

Northeast of the country. three states

were declared in a state of emergency

earlier this year. Having said this, the

government and security agencies have

been very supportive,” Bajaj says. “But

the future is bright and as coverage

improves, the customer take up of

mobile services will increase and, usage

trends being positive, the industry is

expected to grow exponentially.”

Helios towers Nigeria is making

huge headway despite the challenges

and one can only imagine how far it

will accelerate its market share as the

market grows.

the company remains one to watch.

to learn more visit




Elite Clearing and Forwarding (Pty) Ltd

A clear winner

Elite Clearing and Forwarding (Pty) Ltd is an expert

international shipping company offering

comprehensive logistics & freight solutions.

Writer Chris Farnell

Project manager Stuart Shirra

104 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

S U p p l y C h a I N

hatever industry you

work in, the chances

are that at some point

you rely on logistics.

Whether it’s a question

of importing essential supplies, or

getting your own products to foreign

markets, virtually every company has

to, at some point, entrust the cargo

that makes it possible for them to

do business to someone else, often

over a long distance with plenty of

potential hazards along the way.

Elite Clearing and Forwarding is a

company dedicated towards making

that part of your business as painless

as possible.

As Ben Van Rensburg, Elite Clearing

and Forwarding’s Managing Director

explains, “We see ourselves as a

logistical management company.

We manage the process from A-Z,

making sure everyone involved does

whatever is needed to get cargo from

the start to the end of its journey with

the least possible risk and in the most

cost effective way.”

the movement of cargo doesn’t

just involve one component;

it may involve trucks, ships,

warehouses, harbours or planes,

each run by a separate company

with its own procedures, rules and

communications channels. this

creates a potential minefield of

problems as cargo is passed from

one company to another. Elite

Clearing and Forwarding’s job is to

make that transition as smooth as

possible with no or minimal delays at

the lowest cost.

“We act somewhat like a musical

conductor,” Van Rensburg says. “By

making sure everything happens

when it needs to happen, as it is

supposed to happen. We see to it

that the cargo is properly insured,

with documentation done at the

loading and discharge points in

time, and the cargo delivered in a

timely and safe manner. We cover

the entirety of South Africa and do

regular imports and exports to all

major harbours and cities in South

Africa. We also move a lot of cargo

into the African continent, as South

Africa is largely seen as the gateway

into Africa.”

the company handles all types of

cargo from containerised and heavy

machinery through to small air freight

consignments. “By us managing the

entire international logistics process, it

allows our customers to focus on their

core business, the manufacturing and/

or selling of their goods. We take away

the concerns of international logistic

risk management. All they need to do

is the buying and / or manufacturing of

their products and the selling, and we’ll

make sure it gets to the right place at

the right time,” Van Rensburg says.

As we’ve already mentioned,

logistics only works well when a

whole host of separate organisations

are able to communicate and

interact well, and Elite Clearing and

Forwarding specialises in creating

the relationships that allow this to

happen. It is the mutual factor that

ties the entire international logistics

process together.

“Our niche is that we provide a

personalised logistical solution for

our clients. We believe relationships

get things done, so it’s important

to us to have the right relationships

with our service providers and

customers,” van Rensburg says.

“there are a lot of people and

companies involved at various points

along the way, and it is essential that

they have the good relationships that

will make sure things go smoothly.

So we make sure communication

channels are always open and that

we work with the right people.”

However, because Elite Clearing

and Forwarding doesn’t run any

vehicles of its own, it can often

be challenging having its cargo

customers’ cargo entirely at the

mercy of its service providers.

“the biggest challenge we’ve

faced is that we are not in direct



Elite Clearing and Forwarding (Pty) Ltd

control of the harbours, vessels

or aircraft so we’re sometimes

dependant on third parties for the

movement our clients’ cargo,” Van

Rensburg admits. “But the reason

we exist is that we specialise in

sorting out the problems that often

arise with shipping lines, airlines,

customs and harbours, to make

sure there are no undue delays.

This we do through good relations

with both our clients and the

stakeholders in the various stages

of the cargo movement”

But delays can be hard to

avoid, not just because of local

bureaucracy, but also because of

problems out of everyone’s

control like the weather or

unexpected events like vessel

breakdowns or strikes.

“One of the main issues that

we have struggled with is harbour

delays both in South Africa and

overseas, especially this past year,”

Van Rensburg explains. “I had a

conversation with the chairman of

the Harbour Carriers Association

of South Africa who said they

are having huge problems with

climate change in Durban. Weather

conditions especially winds are

playing havoc with the loading

of vessels departing and arriving

vessels in ways that we didn’t see

even last year. Another big issue

is we’re still seeing delays due to

strikes at various points along the

cargo’s path, and the impact

we’re still feeling from general

world economy.”

To combat these problems, Elite

Clearing and Forwarding needs

good people, both among its service

providers and its own staff, and

the company has exceedingly high

standards when it comes to picking its

own team.

“We recruit as widely as possible

to attract the best candidates,”

Van Rensburg says. “We want to

106 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

S U p p l y C h a I N

make sure we have good employment practices

so that we attract talented people that want to

work at our company and make sure that the

staff are properly motivated and competent

as well as trained to handle any shipment that

may be handled. At the end of the day we’re in

a service-based industry. We don’t sell crates or

containers; we sell a service provided by people,

as it is people that make sure cargo moves.

Our business is only as good as the person you

speak to at the other end of the telephone

line, so we make sure every employee is a

shipping and usually a product expert as every

product has different regulatory and movement

requirements. We have in-house training in

operational and logistics procedures, including

refreshers and ongoing procedural training to

identify any gaps in our people’s training to

improve our staff as necessary.”

Of course, if you’re investing that much in your

staff, you want to keep hold of them and so Elite

Clearing and Forwarding provides plenty of incentive

for them to stay with the company.

“Our staff turnover is low because we believe

that to retain staff you have to look at the entire

package, not just salary but work culture, and

ensure that although we’re busy and sometimes

require long working hours, we make sure

people can live a life outside of the office,” Van

Rensburg says.

So what for the future of Elite Clearing and

Forwarding? “there’s huge opportunity for

growth, especially in Africa,” he explains. “We

believe we’re doing something right because a

lot of companies have stayed loyal with us over

the years and new clients come continuously on

board. As long as we continue what we’re doing,

we will always have a competitive edge and the

company will keep on growing. It is important

that our clients are at all times informed of the

exact status and locations of their cargo and

for that we use various technological systems

because we believe that we’re a communications

company as much as a cargo company. We can’t

control the weather or the harbour conditions

but we can control our communication with our

clients, so we’re always working to make sure

that our clients are constantly informed and up to

date regarding their shipments.”





We would like to congratulate Elite Clearing and Forwarding

on their growth and development as a comprehensive logistics

and freight solutions service provider in South Africa.

Through our continued partnership we hope to continue being a part

of their ongoing success. Nedbank can also be of service to you, your

business, staff and household through our decentralised service model

that allows all our regions to offer customised business solutions.

For more information please email us at business@nedbank.co.za.

Nedbank Business Banking – partnering for growth for a greater South Africa.


Nedbank Limited Reg No 1951/000009/06. Authorised financial services and registered credit provider (NCRCP16).

to learn more visit www.elitecf.co.za.



aIr UGaNda




East africa

Meridiana Africa Airlines limited, trading

as Air Uganda, is a privately owned airline

founded in 2007 in Uganda.

Writer Hannah Iceman-Reynard

Project manager James Mitchell


S U p p l y C h a I N

ir Uganda was

established in 2007 as a

quality regional airline

after more than 20

years without a national

carrier in Uganda. In the six years since,

the airline has grown from serving

approximately 80,000 passengers a

year to 170,000 passengers per year

and runs on the basis of three pillars of

high service and operating standards,

reliability and punctuality.

“How has the past year been

for business for Air Uganda?” asks

Cornwell Muleya, CEO of Air Uganda.

“We have been growing steadily over

the past year and have consolidated

our routes across East Africa. the

Ugandan air transportation market

has been growing at approximately 15

percent every year now for six years

in a row. Incidentally, we turned six

years old today.”

Air Uganda, otherwise known as

“the wings of East Africa”, runs a two

class product on board: Crane Class,

which is its premium products, and an

economy class. the airline also runs a

frequent flyer programme called the

Celestair Club.

“We maintain a small, homogenous

fleet,” continues Mr Muleya. “This

allows us to standardise our product

on board and minimise operating costs.

We were founded in 2007 in response

to the need of Uganda to have an

airline operating out of Entebbe airport.

From here we connect passengers

to all major cities in East Africa and

in particular to Nairobi, Bujumbura,

Mombasa, Juba, Dar es Salaam, kigali,

kilimanjaro and Mogadishu.”

Air Uganda makes the most of its

small fleet of three aircraft by running an

extremely efficient and punctual service.

It gained IAtA Operational Safety

Audit (IOSA) certification quickly

two years ago, allowing it to become

equal in terms of safety and operating

standards like the large international

players in the industry.



air uganda

And its IOSA certification has just been

renewed for another two years as per

IATA practices and procedures.

With such recognised service

standards, Air Uganda boasts a

codeshare agreement with Rwandair

and has global interline partnerships

with SN Brussels Airline, British

Airways, Emirates, Kenya Airways,

Ethiopian Airlines and Qatar.

Through these partnerships the

airline connects its passengers on

long-haul services to other regions of

the world.

“Last year Air Uganda took control

of its Entebbe Hub operations by

starting its self-handling services,” says

Muleya. “We wanted to take control of

our own product in terms of standards

and service levels. We were especially

keen to ensure a quick turnaround of

our aircraft and to minimise delays

out of our home base. We can turn

an aircraft around within 30 minutes

and taking control of Entebbe Hub

has improved our output in terms of

punctuality across our network. This

has helped enhance our reputation

for having the best punctuality service

of all the airlines in our markets. We

are a full-service carrier and we have

continued to improve our ground and

on-board services each year.

“Aviation is a people’s business,”

Muleya adds. “We therefore invest in

the training of our people to keep a

high standard and personalised warm

reception for our passengers. The

cleanliness of our premises, as well as

the aircraft on board is also important

in ensuring our customers get the

best from a quality airline. So, is our

reputation for being on time.”

In a fast-growing industry, finding

staff with the right skills can be tricky.

How is Air Uganda ensuring it has

the best people for the job? “Like all

airlines in this competitive industry,

staffing has been a huge issue as

skilled personnel are in short supply,”

he says. “There is a shortage in Africa

of qualified technicians, engineers,

pilots and other operational staff.

For such skilled staff we look to the

international labour market for pilots,

engineers and some key financial

services. In critical areas like aircraft

maintenance we may use short

term interventions from specific

organisations abroad. ”

However, Air Uganda has also

responded to the skills shortage

challenge with significant investment

in the training of its people. It hires

highly educated Ugandans and trains

them to international expertise.


Meridiana is a private italian Air

Fly Company, second player

behind Alitalia. The Company

headquarter is in Olbia, Costa Smeralda

and has been founded on the 29th of

March 1963 By Prince Karim Al-Hussayn

Aga Khan in name of Alisarsa. In the

1991 tha Company name has been

changed in Meridiana.

At the and of February 2010 the merger

with Euroflay, second flyer italian

Company specialized on charter long

routes, rename Meridiana as Meridiana Fly.

In October 2011 Meridiana has acquired the

majorities of Air Italy, and on May 2013 has

bought the minorities of Air Italy delisting

by the Italian Stock Echange.

Today Meridiana offers connenction from

italian islands to the rest of Italy, Sardinia

from Olbia e Cagliari and the Sicily from

Catania and Palermo to Milan, Roma,

Naples, Verona, Turin, Bologna etc..

The Company is specialized on leisure

destination: from the core italian airport

flyes to the beßt piace in Africa (Egipt,

Red sea etc..). From Rome Fiumicino and

Milan Malpensa Meridiana is one of the

best european player on intercontinental

leisure destination travelling Maldive,

Mauritius, Kenya, Zanzibar, Madagascar,

Cuba, Santo Domingo e Brasile.

Tel 0871 423 3711


110 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

f e a t u r e



air uganda

“We have a development programme

within the company for local staff

because that is more sustainable for

the airline in the long run. We use

joint programmes with international

organisations like IATA and AFRAA

to provide cost effective training at

regional centres in Africa, except for

specialised trainings like simulators,

which, for the aircraft we operate,

are found overseas. We send people

abroad for a lot of that in keeping

with international standards. We are

regulated in such areas by our CAA and

international aviation organisations such

as ICAO to which all state parties have

subscribed for the aviation industry,”

Muleya says.

As a result of such measures, Air

Uganda boasts a workforce which

is more than 90 percent local and 10

percent international.

“One of the biggest challenges for

any airline must be the security; how do

you address this risk in in the industry?

We cooperate and work closely with

many service and security organisations

at each of the airports we operate

from. Typically, the airline has its limited

security personnel and they work hand

in hand with airport security personnel,

who in turn work with the country’s

security organsations and structures.

There is a great deal of sharing

information on risks and incidents

so that the safety and security of the

travelling public is not compromised.

This will remain a challenge of the

industry for many years to come. Our

commitment is to use best practice in

all areas and to comply with the safety

standards in all the countries in which

we operate. There is a huge sharing

of knowledge as we try to close any

perceived gaps in this critical area of our

industry,” Muleya says.

In addition to international standards

and industry best-practice, each country

Air Uganda operates in has its own

stringent checks. For example, while

most airports will have two or three

Air Uganda makes

the most of its

small fleet of three

aircraft by running an

extremely efficient and

punctual service”

checks before passengers can get on

the plane, specific countries where

the risk is higher may have even seven

check points.

The other challenge hitting the

entire industry is cost. At the top is the

cost of fuel, which is usually out of the

control of the airlines and in recent

years has accounted for approximately

40 percent of airline operating costs.

“When the fuel prices increase that

is a big problem for the airlines. Also,

with increasing airline taxes at most

airports, there is a balancing act to

be struck in the pricing of the tickets

as the passenger will not distinguish

between the fare, which goes to the

airline, and the taxes, which accrue

to the airport authorities and the

governments,” concedes Muleya.

The other challenge for a growing

regional carrier in Africa is that not all

the airport destinations Air Uganda

operates reach the international

standards passengers expect. “There

are differences in the quality of

airport facilities, especially for transit

passengers who expect to connect

seamlessly to other destinations,”

says Muleya. “The customer service

offered by airport personnel in

processing passengers and their

baggage also differs, with some

airports faring better than others. We

need to reach minimum operating

standards to ensure passengers

112 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

S u p p l y c h a i n

• Airline fuelling & refuelling

• Fuel depot

• Fuel transportation


Tel: +211955125613, +211 977 116305

Juba International Airport, Juba - The Republic of South Sudan

feel comfortable to come and fly and

transit through our airports. We are

pleased to note that most, if not all

the airport authorities in the region,

have recognised this problem and have

announced programmes to upgrade

many of these airports.”

So far the airline is doing an

excellent job at continually improving

the service offered.

It has developed an excellent website

which allows customers to book and

pay online, using all forms of payment

including mobile money, in response to

the needs of the consumer.

“We are taking advantage of

technology with our website initiatives.

In our region mobile money is big and

customers expect this platform from

any progressive company. Therefore

allowing customers to pay using mobile

money is a natural progression of the

changes reflected by our society in East

Africa,” says Muleya. “We also have an

active social network programme so

that customers can interact with us and

make bookings on both Twitter and

Facebook. We are growing our followers

on those platforms and this has kept us

on our toes.”

So what does Air Uganda have

planned for the future?

“We have dealt with most of the initial

challenges of starting up the airline in

the past five years. We are now in the

process of consolidating our position in

the market by offering more frequency

to our key destinations in East Africa,”

says Muleya. “We aim to grow at a rate

that allows us to balance costs and

services effectively.”

Alongside this Air Uganda is planning

to open a number of new routes, not

just following other operators into

already crowded market places, but by

pioneering new routes to niche markets

in the region.

To learn more visit




Saab Grintek Defence

Saab Grintek Defence is a

South African company with a

global reputation.

Writer Ian Armitage

Project manager Tom Cullum

114 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

M a n u f a c t u r i n g

he common

assumption, particularly

in the defence and

security industry, is

that Africa is not strong

when it comes to technology and

innovation. Saab Grintek Defence has

turned this claim on its head.

According to CEO Magnus

Lewis-Olsson, South African-made

electronic warfare technology has

and continues to make its mark in

the international military arena, with

home-grown self-protection systems

being used by numerous defence

forces around the world.

An impressive range of defence

forces, he says, use electronic warfare

technology made and invented in

South Africa.

Amazingly, more than 90 percent of

the systems that are being designed

and produced by Saab Grintek

Defence are being sold on export

outside the continent.

Unsurprisingly this has been

celebrated by the Department of

Trade and Industry (dti) who named

Saab Grintek Defence Best South

African Export Company at the

inaugural South African Premier

Business Awards earlier this year.

Hosted by the dti, Proudly South

African and Brand South Africa, the

award aims to recognise all export

industry sectors from services to

manufacturing and encourage

other South African companies to

participate in international business

development and markets.

It also recognises South African

businesses which invest in both

human and technical resources

in various projects or activities,

produce quality products and

services, and remain domestically and

internationally competitive.

“We are a proudly South African

company,” Lewis-Olsson says. “And

the fact our products are globally

exported represents valuable source






a South African company, has consolidated

its position on the African continent as a

leading defence and security company,

bringing capabilities including electronic

warfare, sensor technology, command

and control, training systems, avionics,

air traffic management, security and

support solutions to the African and

international market.

We combine our local South African

expertise with proven international

capabilities to develop the prosperity of

the nation along with its protection.

We employ over 600 staff locally, working

across the defence and civil security

spectrum. Saab’s South African employees

are engaged on all levels of the company,


f E a T U r E


applying their skills ranging from highly

specialised research to manufacturing

and support staff.

Leading edge technologies are developed

and matured, resulting in new products

manufactured to the highest quality

standards for security and defence

use globally.





Our primary

product is our

electronic warfare

products (EW) and

we mount those

predominately on

helicopters and

fighters but also on

transport aircraft

and we have a

product that goes

onto civilian aircraft

to detect and

protect from

missiles and lasers”


M a n u f a c t u r i n g

of revenue for South Africa. Job

creation in engineering and production

are other obvious advantages.”

Saab Grintek Defence is owned by

Swedish parent company Saab with

a local BEE shareholding of almost

30 percent.

“Our primary product is our

electronic warfare products (EW)

and we mount those predominately

on helicopters and fighters but also

on transport aircraft and we have

a product that goes onto civilian

aircraft to detect and protect from

missiles and lasers,” Lewis-Olsson

says. “We also make avionics

products, black boxes and recording

and health monitoring systems.

Those two categories – EW and

Avionics – are mainly sold on export.

Around 75 percent of our turnover is

export. Our biggest customers are in

India, Southeast Asia and Europe but

some are also in the U.S.

“Export is a clear driver for any

nation and our products are being

sold across the world. It is great to

see our products in Asia, Europe,

Northern Africa and the U.S. but

I have to admit we need a better

local foothold in South Africa and

Sub-Saharan Africa and hopefully

we can open doors inside our own

home market. We have about 600

employees in South Africa but we

also have a telecoms arm called

Saab Grintek Technologies which

employs around 250-300 so in

total we are just shy of 1,000

people locally. All employees,

aside from five people, are South

African so it’s not Swedes moving

into South Africa - it’s a South

African run company.”

Business has been good despite

the general downturn in the global

defence industry and according to

Lewis-Olsson Saab Grintek Defence

has “taken quite a few orders on

the EW side and the outlook for the

beginning of next year is good.”



Saab Grintek Defence

“We do upgrades to aircraft when

it comes to EW, so I suppose we’re

in a good situation now where not

necessarily everyone buys a new

aircraft,” he explains. “We also

integrate our equipment into new

aircraft and in those instances we

go business to business where

we supply our equipment to the

helicopter or fighter manufacturer

and they integrate it. I think it’s

going well. It’s looking even better

for the next year. We’ve had a

good year.

“What’s our secret? I think we

have a product that works. It’s not

something that we need a ten year

plan to build. We’ve proven that it

works and has many applications.

The fact our

products are globally

exported represents

valuable source of

revenue for South Africa.

Job creation in

engineering and

production are other

obvious advantages”

We have an edge. I suppose the

general downturn of the defence

industry has been largely in Europe

rather than Asia and India. Of course

defence spending is dropping in the

U.S. but the local U.S. companies

haven’t seen that much of a problem

yet. If the general mood in the

industry however is that if it’s all

going down then that influences

the buyer but to be quite honest

we haven’t seen much of this. If

anything we see that companies are

starting to acquire equipment again.

“Some of our markets are in Africa

– both North Africa and Sub-Saharan

Africa – and there we face a lot of

challenges. How does the market

work and how do we do transparent

120 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

M a n u f a c t u r i n g

We want to keep selling our EW equipment

and we’d like to break into the Sub-Saharan

Africa market”

business? Despite the challenges

of working in Africa the market has

much potential.

“In Sub-Saharan Africa we see

countries that are more transparent.

They have procurement methods

and process that at least resemble

what we’re used to from the rest

of the world. That would be

countries like Namibia, Botswana,

Ghana and possibly Kenya. Those

countries are our main focus aside

from South Africa.

“In 2014 we have a lot of

deliveries to get out the door,”

Lewis-Olsson continues. “We have

done a lot of business this year

and we need to focus on that and

those operations but we also need

new business and we need to do

follow up business in India and

Asia. We want to keep selling our

EW equipment and we’d like to

break into the Sub-Saharan Africa

market. We’re one of the few larger

defence companies who are in the

region so we’d like to see more

business here.

“In South Africa itself there are a

lot of requirements for defence in

the next one or two years and there

are a few other countries that have

big projects. If we can find a way to

do decent transparent business in

those countries then we are more

than prepared to go there too.”

To learn more about Saab Grintek

Defence visit www.saabgroup.com.





Writer Coenraad Bezuidenhou

executive director, Manufacturing Circle

in South Africa

t has become clear

to all that if Africa

wants to leverage its

population dynamics

adequately for

sustainable growth over the next

decade, the continent needs to

rapidly expand and build out its

manufacturing base. South Africa

may by far be the most industrialised

of all African economies, but its

relative position has been slipping

and much work needs to be done for

manufacturing to regain the strong

foothold it once had here on the

continent’s southern tip.

The Manufacturing Circle has made

it its mission to converse with our

There are


opportunities for the

situation to improve

for manufacturers in

South Africa over the

next couple of years”

government on issues that challenged

the survival and growth of many of our

stalwart manufacturing companies.

Many improvements have resulted

since we have started to have these

conversations with government,

many of which have contributed to an

environment where manufacturing

has been recovering, albeit at rates

we would have liked to exceed. So the

South African purchasing managers

index has been in expansionary

territory for five months of this year,

which at least compares well with

many of our competitors. But even so,

volumes are now still at pre-October

2008 levels, which means there is still a

long way to go.

122 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

m a n u f a c t u r i n g

South Africa has a reputation for

manufacturing quality at a good

price. We have long established trade

relationships with the Eurozone

and the U.S., which have allowed us

to explore complementarities. So,

for instance, we know that we are

competitive with goods such as metal

parts and components, rubber and

plastics, pipes and process equipment

and aftermarket automotive

components. Our established

manufacturing concerns are keen to

find investment partners from strong

competitor economies and to have

their existing distribution networks

leveraged to export products into

Africa that are complimentary to their

existing manufactured exports.

Though our conversations with

government, we have promoted

monetary and fiscal policy

implementation that is circumspect

of the needs of manufacturing. The

South African Revenue Service has

responded by improving customs

operations and its interactions with

key industries. The latest installment

of South Africa’s industrial policy

action plan envisages numerous

transversal interventions and is less

focused on picking winners, and more

so on helping to enhance

the competitiveness of our

manufacturing sector.

There are numerous opportunities

for the situation to improve for

manufacturers in South Africa over

the next couple of years. In the

first instance, we are slowly but

surely seeing the political space

in the country becoming more

competitive. This will have the effect

that, especially at local and provincial

government level, service delivery

could improve over time. This would

particularly benefit our many injection

moulding and FMCG manufacturers

who suffer worst during water and

electricity supply interruptions.

In the second instance, the traction

being gained by industrial policy

measures has every chance to

improve. Government’s local

procurement strategy is succeeding

where locally manufactured goods

of the right quality can be supplied at

prices that do not exceed justifiable

premiums. In addition to this, industry

also eagerly awaits the results of

the Presidential Infrastructure

Coordinating Commission, whose task

it is to ensure a prioritised pipeline

of infrastructure projects is being

rolled out evenly, thus ensuring better

project sightlines and facilitating better

investment decisions.

The third opportunity lies in growing

the market lies outside of South Africa’s

borders. Here we concentrate on three

areas. In the first instance, there are

still numerous opportunities to deepen

our relationships with our traditional

export markets (Europe and the U.S.),

who may not be growing as fast as our

emerging competitors, but who are still

affluent and has demand for products

we could still potentially manufacture.

Secondly, with the introduction of

the BRICS Business Council, we now

have the opportunity to explore

complementarities with Brazil, Russia,

India and China, with the hope of

securing improved reciprocity on trade

in manufactured goods. The third area

is Africa, where massive urbanisation

will provide excellent opportunities for

South African-based manufacturers.

Finally, there is a massive

opportunity for better alignment

between the manufacturing

industry and organised labour in

South Africa. Whereas public sector

unions have consolidated over the

last decade, labour in the private

sector has disaggregated. This

opens the opportunity for labour

and business to better rally around

a strong industrial development

agenda, to which government

can then respond. This would not

only bolster the labour market,

but would massively strengthen

industrial peace and productivity,

which is a hallmark of any strong

manufacturing economy.

To learn more visit




kaNSaI plaSCON



M a N U f a C T U r I N G

kansai Plascon is a company with expansion on its mind. Already the premier paint

company in South Africa, Plascon was purchased by Japanese company kansai in

2012. With a fresh injection of money from Japan, it purchased a 63.25 percent

interest in Zimbabwean Astra Industries limited this July. Africa Outlook

takes a closer look at this household name with huge ambitions.

Writer Hannah Eiseman-Reynard

Project manager Tom Cullum



kaNSaI plaSCON




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outh African paint and

coatings company

kansai Plascon’s

history stretches

back to 1889 when

a carriage varnish seller expanded

into ready-mixed paint – the first to

do so in the country. In the years

that followed Plascon, as it was

known until Japanese company

kansai purchased it in 2012, became

South Africa’s largest manufacturer

of paints, coatings and chemicals,

serving both the retail and

manufacturing industries. Now it

has investment from Japan to go

even further.

“kansai had a clear mandate that

once we came into Africa we would

use kansai Plascon in South Africa

for our platform for further growth

into the rest of the continent,” CEO

Nauman Malik told CNBC Africa’s

Power lunch in an interview earlier

this year.

the expansion has been rapid with

a $5.5 million investment in a 63.25

percent share in Zimbabwean

company Astra Industries – the

leading paint company in Zimbabwe –

just this July.

“We are very happy to say that

we have made the first step in that

expansion plan a reality,” Malik said.

Astra Industries focuses on the

coatings industry and the industrial

sector – much like kansai Paint does

in South Africa, creating a formidable

and joined-up approach to the entire

paints and coatings market.

“As in any market you know

finding the right partner is critical,”

Malik continued.

And this is just the first step.

the rest of the continent – East

and West Africa – is on the radar

and “we will be embarking upon

acquisitions, greenfields projects,

joint ventures in those territories as

well,” Malik said.



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M a n u f a c t u r i n g

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Kansai Plascon


Evonik, the creative industrial group

from Germany, is one of the world

leaders in specialty chemicals.

Profitable growth and a sustained

increase in the value of the company

form the heart of Evonik’s corporate

strategy. Its activities focus on the key

megatrends health, nutrition, resource

efficiency and globalization. Evonik

benefits specifically from its innovative

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platforms. Evonik has for many years

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which represents the promise that it

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individual solutions for the formulation

of advanced paint and coating systems.

Since 2005, the presentation of the

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Tel +49 201 177-01


Kansai Plascon already has a presence

in Malawi, Zambia, Botswana and

Namibia. Now it’s looking at possible

expansion into Kenya, Tanzania and

Uganda in the East, and Nigeria and

Ghana in West Africa.

“Those are big markets,” Malik

continued. “They’re not only big

markets in terms of consumer goods

but of course with a lot of infrastructure

development happening, the demand

for coatings would substantially

increase going into the future. We

are looking into finding the right

partners in both territories. Finding

the right partner is key going forward.

Integration is key. Buying the company

is the easy bit, but integrating it and

then setting it up for success for further

expansion is the key objective for us

going into the future.”

Kansai Plascon’s relationship with

Astra goes back to the mid 70s and in

many ways, buying a large stake in the

firm, was a “logical conclusion”.

We will be


upon acquisitions,

greenfields projects,

joint ventures in

those territories

as well”

“Astra Industries is a very longestablished

company, very strong

management, some very good brands

and have been manufacturing some of

the Plascon brands for several years,”

says Ebrahim Mohamed, executive

director for African operations.

Of course working in Zimbabwe

is seen by some as a risky venture,

but the acquisition seemed perfectly

timed for Kansai Plascon.

The Investment Branch of the

Bank of Zimbabwe was selling its

stocks and Kansai Plascon stepped

up to the challenge.

Though there were other interested

parties Kansai Plascon was able

to demonstrate why it should be

the preferred bidder – from the

historical relationship to the existing

licence and technical agreements

between the two companies already.

Importantly, it was also able to

demonstrate a very clear and credible

indigenisation programme which

128 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

M a n u f a c t u r i n g

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Or email us at: info@cathayindustries.co.za

Cathay Industries (Africa) (Pty) Ltd has been proudly

associated with Kansai Plascon in South Africa

for the past 8 years.




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Collin Austen: 082 331 0117





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Creating customer wealth by

leveraging knowledge through

process innovation

Providing exceptional and innovative

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assets to differentiate market offering

A well established distributor

and manufacturer of polymers,

speciality, functional chemicals and

effect chemicals

Operating through out Africa

supplying over 7000 customers with

700 generic products

According to ICIS Protea Chemicals

is the thirteenth largest chemical

distributor in the world and the

largest in Africa and Middle East

Protea manages the entire customer

supply chain and builds partnerships by

providing chemical solutions that solve,

not create, environmental issues.


would enable management and staff

to benefit from the acquisition.

“I think it’s on these fronts that

we were able to clinch the deal,”

says Mohamed.

So, with such an ambitious (and

proudly stated) expansion goal –

what tips might Kansai Plascon offer

other companies planning similar

expansion? “I think homework is

essential,” says Mohamed. “Certainly

understanding and having a good

grasp of the regulatory environment,

understanding that one cannot find

shortcuts at all. We also have a very

strong Plascon brand and it will

certainly serve us well going forward.”

Starting from South Africa, with

Japanese funding, the kansai Plascon

brand is extremely well placed to

realise those ambitions.

“In South Africa you really

have a little bit of the whole

African continent right here in our

country,” says Mohamed. “We


M a n u f a c t u r i n g



Creodata Business Solutions is an IT resource, outsource and technology

company that specialize in the sourcing of top flight ITC staff, outsourcing of IT

projects and the integration of systems. Creodata place a lot of emphasis on

the building of mutually beneficial relationships with their customers. Our

ventures in the market gave us the opportunity to partner with some of the

most forward thinking IT companies in South Africa. We synergize and

complement each other by leveraging from each other’s key strengths.

We are especially proud and honoured to be part of an extraordinary team at

Kansai-Plascon and are determined to grow in assistance with one of the

world’s leading brands.

Creodata believe in the future of South Africa and its youth. We have an active

youth development program for young individuals that want to embark on a

career in Information Technology. Most of the trainees are already

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For the past 12 years, we made IT happen. We will keep on doing so.

We supply the following types of packaging:

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Tel: 031 305 4549 Email: plastipak@mweb.co.za

124 Berea Road, Berea, Durban, 4000



Kansai Plascon

132 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

M a N U f a C T U r I N G



Buying the company is the

easy bit, but integrating it

and then setting it up for

success for further expansion is

the key objective for us going

into the future”

use that expertise for the various segments of

our markets to understand the markets much

better, to enter those markets with humility

rather than an arrogance that we know we are

the market leader, and our targets are very, very

clearly identified.”

kansai Plascon is the first of a new wave of

international business. Africa is at the forefront

of Japanese investment and we expect to see a

lot more of this fast growing company.



company pep clothing name





of a





For South Africa’s Pep Clothing there

is more to life than loss or profit.

Writer Chris Farnell

Project manager Tom Cullum

134 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

fM Ea aNT UU fr aE

C T U r I N G

or more than 40 years,

Pep Clothing, the

manufacturing division

of Pepkor, has been

clothing South Africa.

the company has been dedicated

to providing every variety of high

quality apparel.

“We’re more than 40 years

old,” boasts Marthie Raphael, Pep

Clothing’s general manager. “the

first factory operated in KwaZulu-

Natal, and we soon founded another

division in Cape town. 25 years ago

we moved both of those divisions into

one building. Over the years we’ve

done many different clothing items.

We’ve been a school uniform factory,

we’ve had limited fashion exposure,

we’ve provided socks, blankets,

underwear and stockings. However,

over time many of those divisions

have been relocated and sold, leaving

us specialising in school uniforms.”

Raphael knows what she’s talking

about, she’s been with the company

for a while and has worked her way

up through the business, seeing it

from every perspective.

“My very first job was with the

factory in 1993,” Raphael tells us. “I

worked as a quality engineer, then

moved to Malawi, first for the group,

then left to work for a local company

for four years before returning to Pep

Stores and from there moved back

into the manufacturing side of the

business again, where I moved up

through the ranks. I’ve now held this

position for six years.”

throughout its 40 years Pep

Clothing has built its reputation on

one foundation – consistent quality.

“the consistent quality of our

clothing, trouser after trouser and

shirt after shirt, has always been our

unique selling point,” Raphael insists.

“We provide school clothing of a

high standard, we supply two leading

brands, and with school uniforms

quality is paramount because it will be

passed down for years.”

that quality is all the more essential

because Pep Clothing is competing

in a market awash with cheap, low

quality products.

“What happens with many of the

imported products on the market

is that year after year you will not

get consistent quality and colour

continuity,” Raphael explains. “We

can achieve that quality because we




have an in house laboratory that tests

all our products to destruction before

they reach the shops, as well as a

long established quality system which

monitors quality from the source

of our raw material supplies, to the

delivery to our customers.”

Competing on quality alone is

always a challenging proposal,

especially when on all sides you are

being undercut on price.

“there are certainly areas in the

industry that show growth, especially

if you can offer superior quality to

the cheaper imports, but the main

challenge remains the cost of the raw

materials we need. We’ve seen some

job losses in the industry as a result of

that,” Raphael says.

But in the long run it’s a strategy

that has always worked for Pep

Clothing, and continues to do so today.

“Over the last year we’ve

outperformed our operational and

financial budgets,” raphael says. “We

operate on a break even model where

profits go right back to the customer.

We’ve been performing higher than

our targets, we’ve brought staff

turnover down, absenteeism is low

and our financial targets are being

met. that being said, we have to

continuously improve our offering to

our customers in terms of value, as

superior quality alone will not keep

any business afloat.”

Even now, the business is working

on making its facilities bigger and

better, providing higher volumes

than before.

“We’re in the process of renovating

the whole factory and building,”

Raphael tells us. “the entire site is

being renovated. We have redesigned

the factory layout to improve process

flow. We are moving each of our four

factories to a temporary area while

we relay the factory according to our

new line layouts. The first phase is

already half way down the line and

we expect to finish the project in 12 to


M a N U f a C T U r I N G

Drake & Scull is one of the largest and most sophisticated Facilities

Management and Technical Service Providers in Southern Africa. We

provide extensive technical, nontechnical and business support services,

which enables us to deliver continuous cost benefits while improving the

quality of our clients non-core services.

13 months, improving our efficiencies

and health and safety standards, as

well as replacing our light fittings

with more environmentally friendly

alternatives. Once the refurbishing

is done, we’ll reintroduce shifts and

expand our capacity.”

Constructing new facilities is

only part of Pep Clothing’s ongoing

projects for improvement however.

Another crucial facet it is working

on is improving efficiencies and

effectiveness throughout the

entire operation.

“last year we improved our

productivity by one percentage

point, lowered absenteeism by three

percent, with the lowest labour

turnover we’ve seen in seven years,”

Raphael says. “this is thanks to a

combination of the way we treat our

employees, an organisational change

to create a safe environment to work

in, as well as providing extra support

that’s necessary because many of

our employees come from difficult

backgrounds. By providing a safe,

supportive environment, we’re able to

ensure that our employees don’t leave

us as they appreciate our wide array of

wellness and leadership programmes.”

this is only the beginning as far as

Raphael is concerned. She strongly

believes in the ongoing improvement

of the business.

“We still need to improve

absenteeism and productivity,” she

admits. “It remains a challenge during

the winter months due to excessive

rain and flooding. The biggest measure

we’re introducing will be having

assistance programmes for employees

to put them in touch with government

departments that can assist them,

as well as introducing an attendance

bonus, and more initiatives to bring

services in house. For instance we have

a full Employee Assistance programme

offering training, education and several

other services to our employees.”

this is about more than having a

series of schemes that pay lip service

to staff support however. raphael

emphases that all of these efforts are

just symptomatic of a corporate culture

that really cares about its people.

“I think what’s very important

to me is our organisational

culture, treating everyone with

dignity and respect,” she says.

“the initiatives we run are quite

unique for a large South African

clothing manufacturer. these

initiatives include full occupational

and primary healthcare, as well

as social workers on site. We run

debt counselling sessions, a large

number of training programmes

for our employees and the ultimate

cherry on the cake for us is knowing

we can help our employees’ families

and communities.”



CrySTal papEr GrOUp



Crystal Paper is recognised as being the

leading independent tissue paper

manufacturer in Africa.

Writer Chris Farnell

Project manager Tom Cullum


M a N U f a C T U r I N G

issue paper is big

business. that box

of tissues that you

keep on standby for

break-ups, weepy

movies and nasty colds might look

pretty unassuming, but there is a

huge industry in place to make sure

that your nose never goes un-blown.

It’s where the Crystal Paper group

comes comes in. However, it’s a

company with relatively humble

beginnings as managing director

rafik Dosani explains. “crystal Paper

started in 1986 as one of the smallest

tissue manufacturers in South Africa.

However, by 2006 we had become

the largest independent tissue

manufacturer in the country.”

Since its birth, the company that

started out as Crystal Paper Mills Pty

ltd has seen growth upon growth.

It is now a nationally respected

manufacturer of tissue, as well

as having an extensive recycling

programme, with a huge proportion

of its new products being made from

recycled paper.

As the company has gone on to

receive widespread recognition

in South Africa and beyond, it has

achieved a growing footprint in the

national and international market,

thanks party to a carefully laid out and

well established manufacturing and

sales infrastructure.

Indeed, at the time of writing,

the Crystal Paper group is not only

the largest privately owned tissue

manufacturer in South Africa but the

third largest such company across the

entire continent of Africa.

But this growth didn’t happen

overnight. the Crystal Paper group is

the living embodiment of the saying

“slow and steady wins the race”.

Dosani tells us, “the growth

of the company has always been

internally financed. A lot of the time

this meant that the growth was

very slow, but it has also remained

consistent. We’ve been growing

steadily for over 20 years in a slow

and consistent manner. We’ve

accumulated a great deal of the

business over a period of time.”

In recent years it’s really begun

to pay off, especially since the start

of the decade, despite the fact that

many companies were still feeling

the pinch from the impact of the

global recession.

“Over the last three years we’ve

seen consistent growth between

18 and 20 percent,” Dosani boasts.

“We’re particularly proud of that and

consider it very significant given that

for the past two years South Africa

has been in a recession.”

Dosani is clear as to the reason for

their success. “We’ve done things

differently to many other companies

in the market,” he admits. “We’ve

taken extra measures to ensure that

we are always able to add value for

the customer.”

the value added approach has

been a key driver for the company’s

growth. To this end, the firm has

a “capitalisation of R250 million”

Dosani says, and that is “essential for

increasing” its manufacturing capacity

and enabling future levels of growth.

“A large part of the company’s

consistently successful growth

strategy is that we have always been

careful to look for and target new

niches that appear in the market,

something we’ve grown adept at

with the wealth of experience the

Crystal Paper group has built up,”

he explains. “With the number of

years we’ve spent in the industry

we’ve learned about the niche

markets to an extent that allows us

to really target the niche customers.

Our wealth of experience has made

us experts in South Africa and

surrounding markets.”

However, regardless of which

target market the Crystal Paper group

has its sights on at any given time,



CrySTal papEr GrOUp

the company’s message has always

remained the same.

“If you want a consistent supply

of tissue and to add value to your

company, you should be dealing with

the Crystal Paper group,” Dosani tells

us, matter-of-factly.

Of course, a key driver behind the

company’s success has always been

the people behind the tissue paper.

And the Crystal Paper group is insistent

on always finding the right people for

the right job, and developing them

with the skills they need.

“training is held internally and on

the job,” Dosani says. “We aim to pick

people off the street and then train

and build them up to the standard

that we expect of the people we work

with. We also aim to give something

back to the community we work with.

Our company holds an advanced

position within the community, and

we perform a variety of social work all

year round.”

We’ve taken

extra measures

to ensure that we

are always able

to add value for

the customer”

this includes measures such as a

recycling scheme that allows for 19

trees to be saved for every one ton

of recycle paper used by the factory -

and it has also saved 23,000 litres

of water for every ton of recycled

paper used.

However, the company has a

particular advantage in that it is

a family firm, and even though

it is moving to a more corporate

structure, it still aims to keep the

best qualities it gained from its

family origins.

“Although we are a family

company, with two family members

involved, a lot of the manpower

comes from outside,” Dosani says.

“And we tend to promote our own

people rather than source from

other companies, and train them up.

the main quality we look for in new

recruits is honesty and loyalty. We

look for people who are in it for the

long term, not people who are here


M a N U f a C T U r I N G

6 Parsons Street, Industria West, Johannesburg, South Africa

Tel: +27 11 474 2218 | Fax: +27 11 474 9435 | Email: sales@quickslit.co.za | www.quickslit.co.za

to learn everything and then move

on, which is difficult because a lot of

smaller companies target our staff.

“It’s been strange going from

a family business to a corporate

environment,” he continues. “We’re

seriously considering going onto the

Johannesburg Stock Exchange at

the moment. It’s a big but necessary

step to maintain our current levels

of growth. to expand we need more

capital, and the best way to do that is

on the stock exchange.

“Once the company’s listed we’ll

be looking to grow to meet the

demands of the African continent as

whole. there are a lot of industries

and resources that are being

developed across Africa that will

increase the demand for tissue,

and we’re becoming the prominent

supplier of it.”

to learn more visit




company name

e v e n t s

3rd annual Nigeria Energy

and Power Summit

Transcorp Hilton Abuja

1 Aguiyi Ironsi St




28-29 November 2013


Thinking Things Through

SciBono Discovery Centre


South Africa

1 December 2013



Kramer Building (K3) and the Baxter

Theatre (O3)

University of Cape Town

Lovers Walk St

Cape Town

South Africa

7-10 December 2013


Urban Rail Africa 2013

The Westin Cape Town

Convention Square, Lower Long Street,

Cape Town, South Africa

10-11 December 2013


Rail Safety Africa 2013

The Westin Cape Town

Convention Square, Lower Long Street,

Cape Town, South Africa

12 December 2013


Mining Risk Management

Summit: Africa

Indaba Hotel and Conference Centre


South Africa

25-28 November 2013



Central & East Africa Mining

Investment Summit

Venue to be announced


20-23 January 2014


Rubyfuza 2014

Strand Tower Hotel

Corner Strand and Loop Streets

Cape Town

South Africa

6-8 February 2014


Meetings Africa 2014

Sandton Convention Centre


South Africa

24-26 February 2014


PHP South Africa -

Johannesburg 2014

Venue to be announced


South Africa

April/May 2014 (TBC)


African Utility Week

Cape Town International Convention


Convention Square, 1 Lower Long Street

Cape Town

South Africa

13 – 14 May 2014


142 www.aFRICAoutlookmag.com

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