Opportunity Issue 104

Opportunity magazine is a niche business-to-business publication that explores various investment opportunities within Southern Africa’s economic sectors. The publication is endorsed by the South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SACCI).

Opportunity magazine is a niche business-to-business publication that explores various investment opportunities within Southern Africa’s economic sectors. The publication is endorsed by the South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SACCI).


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www.opportunityonline.co.za JAN/FEB/MARCH 2023 • ISSUE 104


The appetite for in-person

events and expos is

coming back strongly



What are the risks,

responsibilities and

opportunities on the road

to a carbon-neutral future?

Skills are an

essential driver of FDI

Striking the right note






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Banks find new growth in

next generation networks

Kevin Odudoh, Executive Head of BFSI Sector at Vodacom Business,

outlines what to expect when migrating from MPLS to SD-WAN.

If you are a large bank with multiple points of presence across

the country, continent or even globally, you need to be able

to leverage the best technologies available to remain agile,

competitive and future fit.

In addition, an increasing number of employees are choosing

to work remotely, and more BFSI (Banking, Financial Services and

Insurance) customers are opting for digital channels, putting pressure

on BFSI organisations to move their internal and customer-facing

applications to the cloud. This increases the demand on networks to

deliver reliable and secure services from anywhere, using any available

transport medium, whether it’s dedicated leased lines, open Internet

or GSM-based access services like 4G and 5G.

However, many BFSI organisations are still running pure Multiprotocol

Label Switching (MPLS) technology to connect their branches, offices

and data centres, which is also proving too costly.

The solution

One of the ways to modernise your network is by leveraging a Software

Defined Wide Area Network (SD-WAN).

According to Gartner, “Vodafone identified as a Leader in the 2022

Gartner Magic Quadrant for Network Services, Global”:

• By 2025, 65% of enterprises will have implemented SD-WANs,

compared with approximately 45% in 2021.

• By 2025, 40% of all enterprise locations will use Internet access as

their only WAN transport, compared with less than 20% in 2021.

Kevin Odudoh, Executive Head of BFSI Sector at Vodacom Business,

has an MBA in Global Business, Entrepreneurship and Innovation

from IE Business School, Madrid, and a BSc Degree in Mathematics

and Statistics from the University of Nairobi. Prior to joining

Vodacom Business, he worked in national, regional and global

sales leadership roles, most recently as Global Account Manager,

responsible for the global business relationship between Vodafone

Business and the largest financial-services clients in Africa and the

Middle East.

Migrating to a SD-WAN, a next generation network, which is the

backbone for many of today's most important technologies, can help

BFSI organisations to use the Cloud more effectively, manage businesscritical

traffic more efficiently across a network and enhance cybersecurity

all the way from the end users and clients to the cloud.

“Choosing the right SD-WAN technology is critical when transitioning

from a pure MPLS network. Factors to consider include your cloud

strategy, business applications, geographic presence, employee

profiles and customer experience,” says Kevin. “Data and Security are

also key considerations, because how you collect and leverage data,

and which security processes and tools you have or are willing to invest

in, will influence the SD-WAN technology you choose,” he adds.



Migrating from MPLS to SD-WAN is

becoming a no-brainer


Deployment and transition

Any transformation project has inherent risks. “Scope, cost and

time are constraints that need to be carefully understood and

managed to ensure quality delivery. Usually, a controlled pilot

can help to identify risks and mitigation plans, and even assist

in choosing between technology alternatives before a scaled

roll-out,” says Kevin. “From experience, however, this is the easier

part. Often, the hard part is ensuring seamless contracting and

transition between service providers. This is especially true

if there are several supplier contracts across the networking

stack, including routers, switches, firewall and access links across

multiple territories. To ensure speed to value with minimal

scope creep, choosing the right provider with experience in

delivering large-scale network-transformation projects is key,”

explains Kevin.

Juggling a multitude of regional contracts is common in

multinational banks with global operations, where each country

invariably has its own budgetary constraints, challenges and

demands. The one commonality is that a multinational's head

office often desires to source a service (like SD-WAN) from a single

supplier and be able to provide the same user experience across all

its branches. “For highly dispersed multinational banks, SD-WAN is

ideal, affording a single view across the entirety of their network,”

adds Kevin.

The benefits

By opting for one service provider, customers benefit from volume

pricing. Furthermore – and crucial for banks with a large physical

footprint – they can have the reassurance that comes from working

with a Tier 1 operator. Vodacom was the first service provider in

Africa to achieve the prestigious MEF 3.0 SD-WAN certification,

which confirms that its services comply with the highest industry

standards for performance, assurance and agility.

Legacy networks “work” so to speak but are not optimised

for future-ready businesses. One of the best features of an SD-

WAN deployment is the fact that it uses any existing broadband

infrastructure and does not require the ripping and replacement

of legacy systems.

The rationale for migrating to next-generation networks is as

clear as it is compelling – SD-WAN networks are a significantly

better fit strategically for Cloud services, IoT, digital twins and unified

communications. It is particularly relevant for well-established

global banks who were traditionally bound to an expensive legacy

access infrastructure for their wide area networks. In contrast, nextgeneration

SD-WAN networks open them up to utilising low-cost

Internet connectivity.

Disruption to business continuity need not be a concern. Banks

can have a hybrid setup, maintaining some of their legacy MPLS

wide-area networks, while moving branches individually to SD-WAN.

Depending on their transformation roadmap, banks could adopt a

phase-in phase-out approach, running a hybrid network with legacy

MPLS VPN in some branches and SD-WAN in others, and then migrate

those branches that are still on the legacy networks over time.

Futureproofed for the digital era

Beyond modernising their infrastructure and availing themselves

of the cutting-edge technology, the underlying reason behind

migrating from legacy networks to a Software Defined Network is

that it affords BFSI organisations greater agility and the ability to open

up new revenue streams.

In recent years, banks have been pressured to diversify their

offerings to remain competitive in response to mobile players

like Apple and Google moving into banking and fintechs such as

Chime capturing market share. However, for a bank to expand into

other verticals without jeopardising its core business requires a

greater degree of agility, which is ultimately what next-generation

networks offer.

For banks, time is of the essence. In 2021, the EY NextWave Global

Consumer Banking Survey urged incumbent banks around the

world to “act with urgency to protect their advantages, which are

under direct attack by these new providers.“ It added that banks

must also “build new business models capable of satisfying today’s

consumer needs and evolve and scale to meet future needs and

market developments.“

This is exactly what Vodacom Business can enable for banks

today. By migrating to SD-WAN, banks are future-proofed and

ideally positioned to take advantage of a nimble network. They can

use big data, along with machine learning and artificial intelligence,

to refine their processes and better cater to their customers' needs

and thus remain relevant.

www.opportunityonline.co.za | 3

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ISSUE 104 | JAN / FEB / MARCH 2023














The speech by Advocate Mtho Xulu, President of the South African Chamber of Commerce and

Industry (SACCI), on the occasion of the 2022 SACCI Annual Convention, Emperors Palace, Kempton

Park, 24 November 2022.



As a leader in the field of mechanical engineering with an uncompromising attitude to quality,

Notefull Engineering has ambitious goals. Founder and CEO, Nokuthula Mpunzana, relates how

the business began and looks to the future.


Global logistics blockages present risks for the engineering and contracting sectors. Tyron Theessen

and Megan Jarvis of Weber Wentzel lay out steps that can be taken to mitigate that risk.


Riaan Koppeschaar, Financial Director at Exxaro Resources, describes how the biggest supplier of coal to

Eskom is weighing up the risks, responsibilities and opportunities on the road to a carbon-neutral future.


The Wärtsilä Energy team believe that there is a case for South Africa to re-evaluate its energy

consumption and turn to alternative solutions for its daily usage.


Opportunity caught up with Tracy-Lee Behr, Portfolio Director: Built Environment at dmg events,

on the sidelines of The Big 5 Construct: Western Cape expo and event. She is convinced that the

appetite for in-person events is coming back strongly.


Vulnerable communities must benefit from infrastructure investment, argues Kruger Gate Hotel

CEO Anton Gillis.


George Asamani, Managing Director, Sub-Saharan Africa, Project Management Institute,

interrogates creative responses to finding the project managers the world desperately needs

for economies to grow.


The welcoming address to the WorldSkills South Africa (WSZA) National Competition, held in

eThekwini in 2022, by Minister of Higher Education, Science and Innovation, Dr Blade Nzimande.


There are six vital things to consider if you want to keep a large shopping mall well supplied

with water, says Mannie Ramos Jnr, the COO of Abeco Tanks.


Entrepreneurs everywhere face tough challenges but in KwaZulu-Natal, issues like inflation

and Covid-19 temporarily took a back seat to rioting and flooding during 2021 and 2022.




Building better

this time around

Infrastructure is a popular word again. After the 2010 FIFA World Cup the construction,

property and engineering sectors were bullish about the prospects and everywhere there

was talk of how cranes would soon dominate the South African landscape. It didn’t happen.

Several well-known brand names in the construction industry are no more as a result.

But now there is a suggestion that things are getting better. More building plans were

passed in 2022 and the effects of national government’s 10-year, R2.2-trillion infrastructure plan

covering nearly 300 projects will be felt by many subsectors.

The establishment in 2020 of Infrastructure South Africa (ISA), a programme within the Ministry

of Public Works and Infrastructure, is an indication of the government’s seriousness. A recent

example of the work of ISA was the hosting of the South African Green Hydrogen Summit.

In this issue

In Opportunity 104, engineers, contractors and infrastructure share the spotlight with mining,

energy, climate change issues, tourism and skills development. A story of three entrepreneurs

who overcame the odds provides an inspiring final chapter.

Two lawyers from Webber Wentzel provide advice for engineers or contractors who might

be in legal jeopardy because of global supply-chain problems. Can a contractor protect himself

against the situation where a ship is held up in Shanghai with his materials on it?

With tourists starting to arrive back in South Africa after the long “lockdown stayaway”, two

industry leaders share their views. The return of the events industry is covered in an interview

with dmg events Portfolio Director Tracy-Lee Behr but infrastructure is also raised because one

of her key events is the Big 5 Construct, which takes place in several locations across South Africa.

An insight into the possible effects of upgrades at the Kruger National Park on surrounding

communities is provided by Anton Gillis, CEO of Kruger Gate Hotel.

The Project Management Institute notes that foreign direct investment increases in countries

with good skill levels and asks where the world is going to get the project managers it needs

to manage economic growth.

A speech by Higher Education Science and Innovation, Dr Blade Nzimande, on the occasion of

the opening of the WorldSkills South Africa (WSZA) National Competition, is reproduced because

of its focus on the matching of the training that is provided in South Africa’s colleges with the jobs

that are available and need to be filled in the workplace. The gap between these two things needs

to be filled, otherwise unemployment and a shortage of skilled labour will persist.

Exxaro Financial Director Riaan Koppeschaar lays out the path to sustainability in the era of

climate change for a company that used to be known only for its coal mining. He notes that the

company has invested in wind power and is preparing the path for a range of global climate

scenarios that range from “contained” to “slipping out of control”. The company is aiming to be

carbon neutral by 2050.

Climate change underpins the argument made by the Energy team from Wärtsilä, who argue

that optimising energy storage and thermal balancing are the way to go for South Africa.

Also related to climate change, Mannie Ramos Jnr, of Abeco, outlines some of the do’s and

don’ts when planning for sustainable water provision for big buildings such as shopping centres.

Costs can be considerably reduced and every bit helps in saving the planet if certain key

steps are taken.

Finally, three entrepreneurs share their inspiring stories of overcoming some hard shocks

on the way to recovery and finding a new path to business success. All of them are members

of the Entrepreneurs Organization and give credit to the body and its members for providing

support in tough times.

John Young, Editor

8 | www.opportunityonline.co.za


Editor: John Young

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No portion of this book may be reproduced without written consent of

the copyright owner. The opinions expressed are not necessarily those of

Opportunity, nor the publisher, none of whom accept liability of any nature

arising out of, or in connection with, the contents of this book. The publishers

would like to express thanks to those who support this publication by their

submission of articles and with their advertising. All rights reserved.

News & snippets

Industry insights from the past quarter

Fostering entrepreneurship

Tract Consulting Engineers is going beyond consulting in infrastructure projects. Founder and director Idah Nomsa

Deka is encouraging young engineers through Engineering Efficacy South Africa (EESA), a non-profit organisation

which she co-founded. The vision of the NPO is to bridge the gap between the worlds of industry and university

by providing practical industry seminars facilitated by practising engineers. In addition, courses outside of the

formal curriculum are offered to equip these aspirant engineers with the kinds of social skills that are needed in

the workplace and are often not part of the curriculum. Finally, EESA acknowledges that not all graduates will find

employment while some skilled professionals are also faced with job loss. To counter that possibility, the NPO

introduces the idea of entrepreneurship. Idah herself made the leap to become an entrepreneur and she wants to

share that experience with the next generation as well as her peers.

Wonderbag wins global recognition

Wonderbag, a South African product that allows food that has been brought to the boil by conventional methods to

continue cooking for up to eight hours without using an additional energy source, has placed in the top 10 of a global

environmental competition with a food focus, The Curt Bergfors Food Planet Prize. Wonderbag was shortlisted by Food

Planet as the only South African-based company and one of only two African entities that offered a game-changing initiative

to address the climate crisis through food solutions. Wonderbag was founded in 2008 by Sarah Collins who says that this

simple but revolutionary invention was driven by a yearning for equality and social justice that’s since developed into an

entrepreneurial solution to many of the world’s humanitarian and environmental problems. ”One Wonderbag can reduce

household air pollution by 90% and reduces the amount of firewood collected by up to 80%,” says Collins. The Wonderbag

is sold and distributed internationally, including in South Africa, Kenya, Rwanda, Syrian refugee camps in Jordan, the United

Kingdom, the United States, Australia, New Zealand, in continental Europe, Reunion, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland.

Inayo Mining is committed to uplifting communities

With the company’s headquarters located in Emalahleni, the focus of Inayo

Mining is often on communities within Mpumalanga Province. Two examples

of concrete help are the donation by the company of 30 food parcels to the

Thubelihle Old Age Centre in Kriel (pictured) and the gift of 150 school desks to

Makause Combined School, which is located in Phola. As company co-founder

and director Thando Maseko says of Inayo Mining’s mission, one of the most

important goals is to “uplift black communities who had been marginalised from

business opportunities in the industry”.

Inayo Mining offers a turnkey mining solution from topsoil stripping through to

rehabilitation. Contract mining is the company’s core business. Other services

include material handling and plant hire. The company’s steady growth has

put it in a position to buy assets and build in-house capacity in areas where the

company previously lacked the relevant skills.



Provocative thoughts on the

future of the chamber movement

The speech by Advocate Mtho Xulu, President of the South African Chamber

of Commerce and Industry (SACCI), on the occasion of the 2022 SACCI Annual

Convention, Emperors Palace, Kempton Park, 24 November 2022.

do not take our fiduciary responsibilities lightly, nor do we take the

public's trust in organised business for granted.

It is therefore with a clean conscience that I reaffirm the commitment

of our Board and Council, that for as long as we have the honour to

serve our members and the South African economy, we will uphold the

highest standards of corporate governance, professionalism, integrity

and value-adding service for our members and stakeholders.

The President of SACCI, Advocate Mtho Xulu, the Premier of Gauteng, Panyaza

Lesufi, and SACCI CEO Alan Mukoki.

It is a great honour to host you once again at this muchanticipated

SACCI Business Gala Dinner, in celebration of the

national business chamber movement and the private sector in

the Republic of South Africa.

This gala dinner is the third part of our statutory Annual

Convention, which includes the Annual General Meeting and the

Business Conference. We thank all our guests and stakeholders who

participated in the conference, which was meant to stimulate and

strengthen dialogue among industry peers on the state and future of

our economy and on how the private sector is willing and able to play

a constructive role in a society of shared prosperity.

I also have the pleasure of reporting to you publicly as our

stakeholders that at last month's AGM, we successfully concluded the

prescribed business of the AGM as determined by our Memorandum

of Incorporation. More specifically, the AGM adopted the annual

performance report, elected new board members and secured a clean

audit outcome from our external auditors. This year's successful AGM

is once again an important sign of our ongoing commitment to good

governance and accountability to our members and stakeholders. We

Year under review

Tonight's gala dinner is the first since 2019, following the past two

tough years that we had to endure under the Covid-19 pandemic. It

was indeed a difficult time for our economy, our members and no less

for us as SACCI.

On the negative side, the slowdown in the economy meant that our

stakeholders and members could no longer extend resources to the

chamber movement, as they rightfully attempted to save and readjust

their own businesses.

On the positive side, the pandemic amplified the resilience of the

team at SACCI and the relevance of our organisation in the South

African economic landscape.

Through this harsh episode of the pandemic, the staff of SACCI

voluntarily endured limited resources, at great sacrifice to themselves

and their families. Beyond this sacrifice, the SACCI team went on to

play a vital role in representing the private sector in collaboration and

negotiations with the state, labour and communities in the national

consensus which was created at the time to save lives and livelihoods.

SACCI was a founding member of Business for South Africa in 2020.

Business for South Africa (B4SA) is an alliance of South African volunteers

working with the South African government and other social partners,

as well as various other stakeholders, to mobilise business resources

and capacity to combat the Covid-19 pandemic.

The outcomes of the B4SA initiative form the bedrock of our

economic recovery strategy and are linked back into the SACCI

Organisational Strategic Pillars, for which we formed and continue to

run economic recovery workstreams in the following priority sectors:

• Energy and water

• Mining

• Infrastructure development

• Local manufacturing

• Transport networks

• Agriculture and agro-processing

10 | www.opportunityonline.co.za


While such costs still exist, they are dramatically lower for many

businesses; some businesses have become transnational to the extent

that they likely have more resources available to manage these issues

than chambers.

Thought 3: Competitive chambers

As business became more global, chambers have tried to manage

potential conflicts across boundaries on an ad hoc basis. Some

chambers market to businesses in geographies they don’t serve

in order to attract companies to their geography. In other cases,

chambers help members export goods or even business activities

to other geographies. In some cases, chambers can collaborate to

support businesses of mutual interest; a chamber may find its services

compete with another chamber.

Advocate Mtho Xulu delivers the presidential address to the SACCI Annual Convention.

• Financial services

• Telecommunications

• Tourism and leisure

• Education and skills.

New normal and the future of the chamber movement

As we emerge from the era of Covid-19 and acclimatise to the new

normal of the chamber movement and future of organised business,

SACCI will be implementing the internationally-renowned Chamber

Model Innovation, as developed by the World Chamber Federation.

Four Provocative Thoughts for the Future

We will begin implementing the models on the basis of what the World

Chamber Federation calls the four provocative thoughts for the future:

Thought 1: Reassessing the purpose of chambers

Our observation is that chambers of commerce have historically

focused on supporting businesses and business ecosystems for

a variety of purposes and outcomes. Some of these services,

such as government-policy advocacy, are both long-term and

distanced from most day-to-day challenges of businesses. Some

services such as networking and general business guidance are

commoditised by online communication and data systems. In

other words, while these needs still broadly exist for businesses

and business ecosystems, the supply and value associated with

serving these needs has changed dramatically.

Thought 2: The global chamber

Chambers of commerce have historically focused on supporting

businesses and business ecosystems based on geographic and

state boundaries. In South Africa, this tends to be city and provincial

boundaries. This made sense because the majority of business was

limited by transportation and communication costs as well as the

cost of managing multiple cultural and regulatory systems across

state boundaries.

Thought 4: Experimental business-platform chambers

Chambers of commerce have historically focused on supporting

businesses and business ecosystems for a variety of purposes and

outcomes. Almost all of these services, however, are focused on

current business activities (aside from, potentially, policy advocacy).

Many businesses, however, regularly explore new opportunities,

including business model innovation. Chambers of commerce

have potentially unique access to business trends and B2B customer

information. At the global level, chambers could provide trusted

access to the largest possible audience of business customers as a

resource for “lean startup” experimentation.


In conclusion, we commit ourselves to a new era for a privatesector-led

economic prosperity that will unlock new value building

through organised business formations. We will also support public

sector economic development initiatives such as the Gauteng

Provincial Government’s "Grow Gauteng Together", as this is the hub

of the economy and gateway into the South Africa economy.

The SACCI Gala Dinner followed the AGM and the Business Conference.

www.opportunityonline.co.za | 11


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Falala and Dr Tirhani Mabunda, and has since grown to become a worldclass,

full-service market research company.

Memberships and Affiliations

• SACCI: Member since July 2022

• Pan African Media Research Organisation

• Southern African Marketing Research Association

• European Society for Opinion and Marketing Research

• Corporate member of the Research Industry Transformation

Action Group

Contact details

Dr Sifiso Falala, CEO - Email: sifiso@plus94.co.za | Mr Rafal Pasich, Director - Email: rafal@plus94.co.za

Ms Takalani Mudau, Director - Email: takalani@plus94.co.za


2 Albury Road, Hyde West Building, Dunkeld West, Johannesburg 2196 | Postal address: PO Box 411070, Craighall 2024

Tel: +27 11 327 2020 | Fax: +27 11 327 2019 | Email: nubiz@plus94.co.za | Website: https://plus94.co.za

Tega Industries

Africa (Pty) Ltd

Tega designs, manufactures and supplies abrasion- and wear-resistant products and

services required for mining, mineral processing and the bulk-material handling industries.

Tega is the world’s second-largest producer of polymerbased

mill liners, which are critical components in driving

efficiency and lowering cost per ton of operation. It has

manufacturing facilities in India, South Africa, Australia

and Chile and exports its products and solutions to over

70 countries. It is a true Indian multinational with a global sales and

distribution network and a workforce of over 1 700.

With a reputation for product quality and durability as well as aftersales

service, Tega has established a strong presence in the world and

is well positioned to continue its impressive growth in the mining

consumables space.

Tega Industries Africa offers a range of specialised abrasion- and

wear-resistant rubber, polyurethane, steel and ceramic-based lining

components required for mining and mineral processing, screening,

grinding and material handling.



Tega’s philosophy is “Partnerships in Practice” – to uphold traditional

values through the empowerment of professionals, providing technical

and economically unrivalled solutions to complex problems in mining,

beneficiation, power, material handling and engineering.

Products and services

The company offers value-added consultancy services and solutions

in the areas of mineral beneficiation and material handling, which are

tailored to suit specific customer needs.

Tega supplies products such as mill liners, screen panels, chute

combination liners, hydrocyclones, conveyor accessories and other

mining and mineral processing consumables.

Target markets

Mining and mineral processing industry. BBBEE Level: Verification

planned for January 2023.


Tega is the flagship company of the Tega Group of Companies. It was

promoted by the Mohanka family in 1976 as “Tega India Limited”. The

company commenced operations in 1978 in India with a foreign

collaboration with Skega AB, Sweden with the objective of providing

Vishal Gautam, CEO

unique products and services for handling complex problems in material

handling and mineral processing industries. Madan Mohan Mohanka

acquired the entire equity stake of Skega AB in 2001. Tega Industries Africa

(Pty) Ltd (formerly Beruc Equipment) was incorporated in 1984, and is

governed under the laws of South Africa. Tega Africa was acquired in 2006.

Key facts and figures

Year established: 1976 in India, 2006 in South Africa

No of staff: + 130 in South Africa and + 1700 globally

Major clients: Anglo Platinum, Sibanye Stillwater, Glencore, Northam, Impala

Platinum, among others

Turnover: + R300-million

Memberships and affiliations

SACCI: Member since June 2022

CII: Confederation of Indian Industry

IBF: Indian Business Forum

MMMA: Mine Metallurgical Managers Association

Contact details

Vishal Gautam, CEO, Head of Operations

Physical address: 2 Uranium Road, Vulcania Ext 2, Brakpan | Postal address: PO Box 17260, Benoni

Tel: +27 11 421 9916/7 | Email: info@tegaindustries.co.za | Website: www.tegaindustries.com

www.opportunityonline.co.za | 13


14 | www.opportunityonline.co.za


Notefull Engineering creates harmony

in the composition, design and

execution of engineering projects

As a leader in the field of mechanical engineering with an uncompromising attitude to

quality, Notefull Engineering has ambitious goals. Founder and CEO, Nokuthula Mpunzana,

relates how the business began and looks to the future.

Please tell the story of how the company came to be founded.

In 2011 I had a business partner but we parted ways in 2016. In

2017 I opened my own proprietary company.

What inspired you to go into engineering and to start a company?

I enjoy finding out how things work. The fact that engineering is

so much an essential part of everyday life was part of it, plus the

fact that I like to challenge myself.

Another factor that led me to start my business was to improve

people’s lives. I have a desire to make this world a better place.

I always knew I wanted to run my own business even when I

was young. Early examples of that include selling candy in school

to doing catering while I was at university.

Where does the name of the company come from?

It is inspired by my music background. I studied music at the University

of KwaZulu-Natal. In music every song that is composed is made

up of specific musical notes that come together to shape the song.

Mechanical engineering is the same in that every single phase

in the engineering process needs to be composed, designed and

crafted to perfectly fit the structure that is being created. Nothing

can be allowed to be out of tune. Similarly, just like the notes

are carefully crafted, in engineering each process is methodically

executed with expert passion and skill to create a structure that

will be like a beautiful song – and stand the test of time.

What were the major challenges you faced in the early days?

Being in charge of an emerging company in an industry that is

dominated by men was a challenge. My dad always taught us as

his children to be constructive. He would always make us do the

sort of duties that were normally allocated to boys. I think this really

helped to build me up to be able to face challenges.

What else helped you get through those tough times? Did

you have support systems?

My number one supporter is my husband, Vezwa Mpunzana. Chief

Operations Officer Hlengiwe Gumede has also been very supportive.

These two people have been my pillars since the inception.

I am grateful to both my parents who instilled in me the message

from the Biblical passage, Phillippians 4, that I can do all things

through Christ, who gives me strength.

Have you found any obstacles to you as a woman in the

engineering field?

In this male-dominated industry, men always feel that they are

superior to women. My ability has been challenged on numerous

occasions. To survive in this industry, you need to stay strong, ignore

negative comments and speak up when you are treated unfairly

because of your gender.

Which section of your business has been growing the most in

the last two years?

Steel fabrication is growing at a steady rate and it is rising. The global

market is anticipated to rise at a considerable rate between 2022

and 2028.

Demand in steel fabrication is high in most countries due to an

increase in industrial activities and also because of the increased

demand in various end-user industries such as automotive,

shipping, railways and power and energy.


In engineering each process is

methodically executed with expert

passion and skill to create a structure

that will be like a beautiful song

– and stand the test of time


What is the nature of the work done by Notefull Engineering?

All steel fabrication, refurbishment, maintenance and repair, sandblasting

and painting.

www.opportunityonline.co.za | 15


Installation of power lines

Steel pipe fabrication and installation



Laser cutting


Plate bending and rolling

Steel structures

Engineering design

Computer numerical control (CNC) machining

You now have several blue-chip companies on your client list.

How did you build up your client base?

We started very small. Our unique selling proposition is providing

excellent customer service and support. This has helped to attract even

international clients and has been vital in maintaining our client base.

The other major factors where we are strong are:

• Uncompromising quality. We work around the clock to ensure our

clients get the best.

• Health and safety. We always strive for zero injuries. We are currently

implementing ISO45001 to provide for an even safer and healthier

workplace and to align with international best practice. The health

and wellbeing of our employees is very important to us. I have

seen that a team that feels cared for works better and produces

good results.

• Innovation. We exist to solve complex problems and we try to be

innovative as much as possible.

How many staff do you have?

We have 143 permanent staff which includes double-coded welders,

riggers, boilermakers, fitters, engineers, pipe fitters, fitter and turners,

supervisors, site managers, painters and semi-skilled workers.

Do you have programmes that encourage staff to further

their education?

We believe in training, education and the development of our

staff. This approach has helped us in improving our employees’

level of performance through the acquisition of skills, abilities

and knowledge. We have an annual budget of over R1-million for

education and bursaries.

All of the children of our employees who matriculated in 2022

will receive bursaries. We also work closely with TVET colleges

to provide learnerships and we have hired some of the students

who excelled at college.

Where do you see Notefull Engineering in five years’ time?

Our goals include:

• Registering on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange. This

would allow our employees to have a stake in the business

by buying shares.

• Creating Notefull as a franchise operator.

• Taking Notefull into the automotive sector.

• Establishing a global footprint.

When did you join SACCI?

November 2022.

Notefull Engineering


Quality mechanical engineering

that inspires confidence.

Since 2017, Notefull Engineering has grown to meet

the needs and ever-changing demands of the

mechanical-engineering industry.

Notefull Engineering is proud to be a leader within

the metal industry, specialising in all steel fabrication

such as welding, laser cutting, punching, CNC machining, plate

bending, sand blasting and painting, piping, steel plating,

structural steelwork and more.


• Teamwork

• Excellence

• Integrity

• Zero harm

• Innovation

Metal fabrication

Metal fabrication is the process involving the transformation of raw

metal into a product or item that can be used in construction or as an

assembly. As an alloy of iron and other metals, steel has a wide variety

of different variations which are used in structural and fabrication

operations. In essence, fabrication is taking metal and shaping it to

a desired specification.

Notefull’s custom-metal-fabrication services ensure fast and

cost-effective solutions for any parts that need to be made from

3D CAD files or engineering drawings to fabrication services.

Notefull offers a range of sheet metal materials, including

aluminium, copper, steel and stainless steel, as well as assembly

services like installing PEM inserts, welding and finishing services.


• Steel fabrication

• Specialised welding

• Mechanical engineering design

• Machine moving and rigging

• Boiler making and fabrication

• Sand blasting and painting


Notefull Engineering’s three branches are located in Richards Bay,

Tongaat and Pretoria. A large fleet of vehicles ensures the best

logistical value when delivering clients’ products and services. A full fleet of

19 vehicles includes a wide variety of trucks, 4x4s and panel vans.

Major clients

Lafarge, Eskom, Sappi, Tronox, Rio Tinto, Rand Water, Department of Public

Works, Tongaat Hulett, Corteva, Foskor, Transnet, Harmony Gold, Multotec.


Accreditation ISO9001:2015 QMS.

ISO 9001and ISO 3834 accreditations and the company’s BBBEE

certification ensure that clients get consistent, good-quality products and

services. The ISO 3834 is regarded as the global benchmark in welding

quality requirements.


Date joined SACCI: November 2022


Other memberships: JCCI; AFSA; SAIW; Zululand Chamber; PMB Chamber;

Durban Chamber; Cape Town Chamber; Durban Automotive Cluster;

American Chamber


Richards Bay (Main Branch): 9 Ceramic Curve, Alton, Richards Bay 3901 | Tel: +27 35 761 1015

Automotive Supplier Park, 30 Helium Road, Rosslyn, Pretoria | Tel: +27 12 564 3503

Email: nokuthula.m@notefullkzn.co.za | Website: https://notefullengineering.co.za

www.opportunityonline.co.za | 17


Contractors can protect themselves

from supply-chain risks

Global logistics blockages present risks for the engineering and contracting sectors. Tyron

Theessen and Megan Jarvis of Weber Wentzel lay out steps that can be taken to mitigate that risk.

Current logistical bottlenecks present high risks for contractors in completing capital projects

and they need to protect themselves against penalties.

Supply-chain disruptions, which emerged as a result of Covid-19 lockdowns in 2020 and

were joined by rising inflation towards the end of 2021, intensified in 2022. With the war in

Ukraine and the Covid-19 shutdown in Shanghai, disruptions worsened.

The other side of logistical disruption and the war in Ukraine is that it is causing a spike in the prices of

certain commodities so mining companies are more anxious than ever to accelerate expansion projects

– even as their contractors are battling to secure the necessary inputs. For example, the shortage of

microchips, which are used in a vast range of consumer products, including cellphones and automotive

vehicles, stemmed not only from the closure of factories but also rising demand for technology, when

more employees had to work from home. Three-quarters of microchip production is located in East Asia,

according to The New York Times.

Another area of acute shortage over the past two years has been steel. Not only were mills shut during

Covid-19 but, when they restarted, the extent of the economic recovery was underestimated. This has caused

a spike in the cost of certain steel products. The costs and timelines for importing goods have increased

dramatically, with a 500% increase in the freight costs of using a 12-metre container to send goods by sea from

China to South Africa.

Additionally, Covid-19 cases continue to affect the outputs of suppliers, manufacturers and contractors

at various levels of the supply chain. For example, an outbreak of Covid-19 at a supplier or sub-supplier

compromises its capacity to complete production timeously, which in turn delays delivery to manufacturers

and contractors. These delays and heightened costs are causing contractors and OEMs to seek ways to

manage risks and disclaim responsibility for time and cost overruns on large capital projects. Material Adverse

Event or Force Majeure clauses may not assist, as the materiality threshold may not be met in respect of the

former and supply-chain disruption is unlikely to be construed as an unforeseen or unavoidable event in

relation to the latter.

Ricardo Gomez Angel on Unsplash

Additional clauses

With no immediate prospect of this problem being resolved, contractors who need to procure critical

capital items reliant on inputs like steel, microchips or the logistics chain are having to consider

including additional clauses in their contracts to protect themselves from the ramifications of failing

to deliver within anticipated timelines. Contractors need to acknowledge that there are higher levels

of commercial risk and manage these differently.

Where there are concerns that a potential delay in the supply chain will have an unintentional knockon

effect on the construction period, the time for completion and the defects date (and these delays

are not attributable to the contractor), the contractor may consider including back-to-back provisions in

their contracts with suppliers in order to mitigate these risks. In addition to providing for contractual relief,

contractors should reduce their reliance on a single critical source of supply and look for alternatives. Sourcing

products closer to home or using local products may also alleviate risk.

The knock-on effect of risk to corporate reputation should be considered when selecting a supplier and

the relevant geopolitical risk ought to form part of this evaluation. Sustainability of supply may form an

important part of ESG reporting for contractors too.


We are the leading full-service law firm on the African continent, providing clients with seamless, tailored and commercially-minded business

solutions within record times. Our alliance with Linklaters and our relationships with outstanding law firms across Africa ensure that our clients have

the best expertise wherever they do business.

Born into engineering




TRACT Consulting Engineers is active across South Africa and

its founder is determined to help young engineers.

TRACT Consulting Mission

• To grow the company and provide employment opportunities for

skilled professionals and young engineers

• To identify gaps in the engineering industry and provide innovative


• To provide cost-effective solutions to clients

Biography: Idah Deka (Professional Structural Engineer)

From an early age, Idah Deka sometimes joined her late land surveyor father at work in

the mining towns where she was born and bred. Years later, as a youth, she took the leap

to form TRACT Consulting Engineers. She says the word ‘’theodolite’’ formed part of her

childhood vocabulary. Idah is a specialist Structural Design Engineer who has designed a

wide range of complex structures such as warehouses, car showrooms, office blocks, cullet

bunkers, structural steel for glass plants and shopping centres. Her experience in complex

commercial projects forms the foundation of TRACT Consulting Engineers. Idah is also

passionate about tertiary education, holding positions in various institutions as well as

co-founding an education-related NPO. The highlight of Idah’s career so far is the period

when she was a Structural Design Engineer responsible for large-scale commercial projects.

She says it is an opportunity she will always look back and smile upon as it afforded her the

chance to learn exceptional structural engineering skills.

Company history

TRACT Consulting Engineers is an 80% black female-owned company,

Level 1 B-BBEE contributor, founded in June 2019. The company

undertakes engineering consultancy services in various Civil

Engineering disciplines. In the time that TRACT has been in operation,

great strides have been made and a commendable client base has

been built. The company has been actively involved in development

projects in South Africa in both the public and private sectors. Services

have been provided to private clients such as consulting engineering

firms, manufacturers of transformers, mining companies, individuals,

body corporates as well as to government.

Aspirations and success

Idah has always been interested in the operations of a company, aspiring

to be an operations manager. Being the founder of TRACT Consulting

Engineers allows her to be involved in the management of the company

while still being involved in project delivery. Idah’s advice to other aspiring

entrepreneurs is to gain knowledge in business finance, among other skills.

In TRACT’s first year, Idah had weekly sessions with TRACT’s accountant,

who is also a tax practitioner. This has equipped her to keep track and be

involved with TRACT’s accounting and tax-related issues.

She attributes her success to four things: skills, perseverance, strong

family support and a strong network. “My immediate goal is to grow the

company and create employment opportunities for young graduates.

While working towards achieving my goals, I am mindful to enjoy every

step of the process and not be destination orientated,” she says.

Residential project at 1st floor level

Bulkwater-supply project at practical completion

Contact details

E: info@tractconsulting.co.za | C: 064 133 0192 | www.tractconsulting.co.za www.opportunityonline.co.za | 19


Freddy and Sons Maintenance

Engineering (Pty) Ltd

Offering quality solutions and services for two decades.

Freddy and Sons Maintenance Engineering (Pty) Ltd

is a 100% black-owned and managed engineering

company which has its headquarters in Bushbuckridge,

Mpumalanga. The company has been offering

solutions since 2012 and has steadily grown its client

base to include a range of private and public sector companies.

Freddy and Sons specialises in electrical, mechanical, project

management and air-conditioning services. With the combination

of the skills and expertise within the company, Freddy and Sons

Maintenance Engineering (Pty) Ltd has the capability and capacity

for most projects and has excellent working relationships with

other medium-sized companies (both established and emerging)

for additional capacity when required.


Freddy And Sons Maintenance Engineering (Pty) Ltd is a key national

player in Electrical and Mechanical Engineering and advisory field

within the South African and Sub-Saharan African regions, operating

in the following areas:

• Electrical and Mechanical Engineering Designs

• Project Management

• Infrastructure Asset Management and development

• Solar Energy Systems

• Performance Energy Management

• Electrification

• Air-conditioning

All divisions serve a wide range of local, regional and multinational

clients and remain recognised and grouped with market leaders in

multiple in multidisciplinary engineering services.

Qualifications and certificates

Founder and CEO Freddy Sibuyi has a Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical

Engineering and an MBA. In addition, he has Engineering Project

Management Certificate from the University of Pretoria, a Trade Test

(Electrical), a Wiremen's Licence and has undergone a Safety Management

Training Course (SAMTRAC) through NOSA. Before starting his own

business, Freddy worked for Transnet, Scaw Metals and Eskom. He has

been a winner in a national business plan competition for SMMEs run

by Business Partners Limited and SME Toolkit and has participated

in the Tholoana Enterprise Programme of the SAB Foundation.


A511 Millennium Building, Manyeleti Main Road, Thulamahashe,

Mpumalanga 1365 | Tel: 087 057 1105 | Mobile:078 618 3300

Email:info@freddyandsons.co.za | Website://freddyandsons.co.za

The founder of Freddy and Sons, Freddy Sibuyi, tells the story of how

the business began and how challenges were overcome.

Where do you offer your services?

To date we have grown to supply nationally

through four branches in South Africa:

Bushbuckridge, Witbank, Auckland Park

(Johannesburg) and Cape Town. As our

vision statement states, “To be the

world-leading Engineering Service

provider.” We have also managed

to grow, extend our footprint and

manage projects in other African

countries such as Mozambique,

Zimbabwe and Botswana.

Which aspects of the business

is showing the best growth?

The green energy sector, or

solar systems, has shown a very positive growth graph since

Eskom and municipalities have implemented loadshedding.

The failure of energy supply nationally has seen the demand

and the market for energy expand, which is reflected in revenue

and sales.

Have you signed any significant new clients in the last 18 months?

We have closed a number of new long-term, small, medium and large

contracts with Standard Bank, Afrimat, AfriSam, General Electric, Astron

Energy and Anglo American Mining.

Do you have partnerships with other companies?

At this point our company has grown to become an asset and valued

business which stands on its own in any project. We have the skills, acumen,

staff qualifications and accreditations to manage and complete every

project to the customer's expectations and scope, be it large or small.

What are some of the challenges you have faced to get your small

business started and to make it grow?

Building an Asset-of-Value business has never been easy, despite the

fact that I had qualified with a Master of Business Administration (MBA).

A standalone business has always been my dream, and this made me

able to tackle the many challenges to build, manage and operate

the successful business: financial, marketing, operational and human

resources challenges. It was very difficult to penetrate the engineering

market before we had responded to all of these challenges. But now

we are able to meet every project or business standard.



CTICC, Cape Town, 6 to 9 February 2023

Theme: Unlocking African Mining Investment: Stability, Security

and Supply

Whereas the focus of Mining Indaba 2022 was how best to

emerge from the lockdowns and other challenges presented

by the global Covid-19 pandemic, this year’s gathering explores

African mining’s opportunities to tap into the global rush for

the raw materials needed to ensure a cleaner future, while at

the same time considering responsible sourcing and sustained,

ethical supplies of these critical minerals.

A Green Metals Day, supported by keynote sponsor JOGMEC,

will cover the impact of COP27 outcomes on green-metal demand

and supply; battery metals and carbon neutrality; green-metal

outlooks; Africa’s hydrogen potential; as well as ways to build

domestic manufacturing industries as part of mineral value addition.

African mining and metals are critical to tackling the global

climate emergency. Home to 30% of the world’s mineral deposits,

including the critical minerals needed in green technologies and

renewable energy, the continent is positioning itself to benefit

from the green energy transition

Investing in African Mining Indaba, the world's largest gathering

of the most influential stakeholders in the African mining industry,

is gearing up to again deliver a record-breaking event that will

facilitate greater investment into African mining.

The 2023 theme captures the very real geopolitical shifts and

economic disruptions being experienced and which are providing

pressure points – and opportunities – within African mining as global

economies seek security of supply, especially for their own energy

transitions, as well as the raw materials and precious metals to bolster

their economic power.

This year’s programme will delve into integral economic empowerment

strategies, ways to support supply chain security for the energy transition

and seizing opportunities to capitalise on the commodities super cycle.

A number of new initiatives and programmes will also be launched.

These include the Explorers Showcase, the Junior MINE and the Official

Government Leaders Programme. The Explorers Showcase will showcase

early-stage explorers through presentations and core samples to help

stimulate those much-needed conversations with investors.

Website: www.miningindaba.com


CTICC, Cape Town, 7 to 9 March 2023

Theme: Solutions for Africa

The Africa Energy Indaba Conference will discuss, debate and

seek solutions to enable adequate energy generation across the

continent. Delegates, drawn from all continents, represent an

unrivalled combination of industry experts, project developers,

financiers, energy users, government officials and manufacturers.

Modern, affordable, reliable and sustainable energy is critical

for economic growth and the provision of access to modern

energy contributes tremendously to improved healthcare, better

education and opens up economic opportunities in both urban

and rural areas in Africa. The Africa Energy Indaba is the definitive

energy conference for Africa, providing an annual programme

that shapes energy policy for the African continent.

The Africa Energy Indaba Exhibition, taking place alongside

the annual conference, provides an excellent opportunity to

showcase and examine products and services with an audience

of decision-makers and influencers from the power and electricity

industry in the region and Africa.

Side events include the Africa Gas Forum, the IPP and PPA Conference,

the Africa Forum for Utility Regulators (AFUR) Conference and the EV

International Conference and Expo.

Website: https://energyindaba.co.za/


Climate change and mining

sector financial sustainability

Riaan Koppeschaar, Financial Director at Exxaro Resources, describes how the

biggest supplier of coal to Eskom is weighing up the risks, responsibilities and

opportunities on the road to a carbon-neutral future.

Exxaro Resources has been investing in wind power for more than two decades. Credit: Exxaro

Building a sustainable future as a mining company

requires an understanding of the financial risks

and opportunities that climate change poses for

the industry. The Intergovernmental Panel on

Climate Change (IPCC) has long identified increased

concentration of Greenhouse Gases (GHG) in the atmosphere

as the most significant contributor to global warming, caused

predominantly by the burning of fossil fuels. The rise in the earth’s

temperature not only leads to the disruption of ecosystems and an

increased likelihood of natural disasters, but also threatens political,

economic and social stability.

Exxaro recognises this and has a strategy in place that will allow

us to both mitigate risk and maximise our ability to take advantage

of the opportunities presented by the transition to low-carbon

economy. We will be a carbon-neutral company by 2050 and we

will build a portfolio that is resilient in a low-carbon future.

Of course, strategic objectives guided by scientific research

are important but to really power those objectives, companies

in the mining sector need to be committed to more than just good

returns and reduced risks: we need to be committed to having a

positive impact on society and the environment. If we are not guided

by this purpose, we will not be able to fulfil our responsibilities to the

communities and societies in which we operate.

A just transition to a greener future

While the global use of coal is expected to decline in the longer term,

it is likely to remain the predominant source of affordable energy in

South Africa for many years. As the largest supplier of coal to Eskom, we

have a responsibility to continue coal production in an environmentally

and socially-responsible manner. If we abruptly stopped producing

coal, this would have a devastating impact on our economy and our

people. As we shift to more sustainable energy solutions, informed

by the Just Transition framework, Exxaro will provide a range of social

interventions and an expanded renewable energy programme that

will secure jobs and livelihoods as we envision a low-carbon future

that leaves no-one behind.

22 | www.opportunityonline.co.za

SolarTurtle is transforming the

renewable energy market


Empowering entrepreneurs will boost local

economies and add value to communities.

At SolarTurtle we have always taken pride in the quality

of our work, the experience and professionalism

we bring and the robustness of our values and

behaviours. We are united by a common purpose

to “Inspire Renewable Energy Development across

Africa while empowering women and youth”.

We use a containerised model for exploration or construction

off-site offices, business hubs or shops, clinics and media centres. We

tailor the solution to your needs, through our solar PV technology.

Because our solar panels are fitted into the container they lock

from the inside, making them safe and secure.

The keys to our success are transparency, fairness, professionalism,

convenience, safety and security, underpinned by our core value

of integrity.

We promote women and youth, thus helping people help

themselves. We promote the green economy. Through our

entrepreneur initiative, we help create sustainable jobs, skills

transfer and provide business training through our management

and POS portal software app.

“Swap-out a powerbank-battery and carry on with your

smart day!”

The Solar Turtle offers unique safety, flexibility and innovation. In

the morning the solar panels unfold from their secure location to

feed on the rays of the sun. In the evening the panels fold away

into a tamper-proof hard shell.

Solar baby Turtle© is ideal for:

• Persons-On-The-Move

• Festivals

• Sports events

• Open markets (Hawkerville)

• Taxi commuter stations

• Bus and train commuter stations

Services include:

• Wi-Fi hotspot

• Airtime services

• Snacks and cooking

• Printing and copying

There is a gap in the market for a small solar kiosk that can provide

battery-charging and WiFi options to meet the ever-growing reliance

on smartphones and other ICT devices. People are on the go and

need to have their devices charged all the time. What if you can just

swap-out a powerbank battery and carry one with your smart day? This

service will offer convenience to city dwellers and rural communities alike.

The demand for accessible electricity in pay-as-you-go increments has been

proven across Africa. We at SolarTurtle just want to take it a step further.

The Solar Turtles will enable us to utilise the lessons we have learnt

over the years, of working with off-grid communities to produce costeffective

energy-kiosks ready for rapid scale-up across Africa.

Three new micro-solar-energy-kiosk designs, each with an integrated

SME e-learning and ICT management system. A small version that can be

transported on a taxi, a medium version that can be pulled or peddled

to trading locations, and a larger version, like a trailer, that can be used

for events and offer a wider range of products and services.

The solar panels unfold and it can start recharging batteries, phones

and other small rechargeable appliances for an income.

The SolarTurtle will be able to recharge solar-power-banks that

customers can take with them to power their devices for the day.

Solar Turtle is currently in production of mobile solar cold-storage

units and freezers.

SolarTurtle SA is an award-winning social business that has a proven

track record of promoting enterprise development in less-privileged

communities through tailored renewable energy technologies.

Please refer to the SolarTurtle material in the energy section of this magazine.


Lungelwa Tyali CEO: 0723219070 | Joeanne 0435550860 or 0795081326 | Email to: info@solarturtlesa.co.za | Website: www.solarturtlesa.co.za



We plan to ensure that our revenue

is primarily generated from lowcarbon

business operations.


As early as 2010, Exxaro began building this future by investing

in two wind farms through renewable-energy producer Cennergi.

As our investments in renewable energy increase over time, our

revenue from them will grow too.

The importance of transparency

We have completed our alignment assessment to the Task Force

on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) recommendations.

Going forward, we will be aligning our external climate-risk financial

disclosures to the TCFD recommendations. This will provide

transparency regarding our targets, strategies, climate-change risk

management and opportunities to our stakeholders. Investors, asset

managers and financial institutions are increasingly demanding

that companies disclose their climate-related financial risks and

opportunities. These disclosures allow more effective valuations

of risk exposure and empower markets to reward sustainable

and resilient business models. Reporting in line with the TCFD

recommendations is the strongest signal to our shareholders

that our business considers climate-related financial risks and

opportunities as critical.

As we transition to a low-carbon portfolio, we have engaged

consistently with our shareholders and financial partners on our

strategy to address the risks and opportunities of climate change

that may affect our operational and financial sustainability. We

have also participated in local and international climate-action

networks, such as being a headline sponsor of the South African

pavilion at the UN Conference of the Parties meetings. This

partnership approach to climate change has allowed us to share

our knowledge and seek new approaches to bolstering our

portfolio resilience.

Preparing for future scenarios

Coal demand will continue to come under pressure both domestically

and globally, which is why we have developed three climatechange

scenarios using IPCC and Internal Energy Agency (IEA)

data to guide our response strategy. These scenarios range from a

“contained” situation where global temperatures rise by 1.5°C, to a

“partly contained” 2°C scenario, to a “slipping out of control” global

scenario (with a rise of 3°C or more) where the Paris Agreement

objectives have not been achieved, but finance for low-carbon

projects will be more readily available.

What is important to consider, however, is that even if the

2°C objective is achieved, Southern Africa warms on average at

Exxaro is the largest supplier of coal to Eskom and will not abruptly stop

producing coal. Credit: Exxaro

almost twice the global rate, which would result in an unthinkable

domestic temperature rise of 4°C. A low-carbon transformation will

be vital to mitigate the exposure risk, not only for our business but

also for the broader national economy. Therefore, over the next

decade, we plan to ensure that our revenue is primarily generated

from low-carbon business operations.

Looking forward

Despite the challenges of today’s economic environment, Exxaro

continues to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and will leverage

opportunities that are presented by the transition to cleaner energy.

Although mitigating climate change is critical to our company, we

depend on good financial performance to support our investments in

low-carbon innovations. With a portfolio in both high-quality coal and

renewable energy assets, as well as our strong credit rating, prudent

capital management, history of transparency with climate disclosure

and active engagement with stakeholders, we have established

ourselves as a trusted and

responsible provider of energy

in South Africa.

Climate change may pose

unprecedented risks, but if

we are prepared to respond

strategically and meet our

responsibilities, it presents

even greater opportunities

– which we will engage with

stakeholders to be on an

ongoing basis.

Riaan Koppeschaar, Financial Director at

Exxaro Resources

24 | www.opportunityonline.co.za





High-intensity mapping

is attracting major

investments to South Africa

Council for Geoscience CEO, Mosa Mabuza, is upbeat about the country’s mining

potential, based on new finds being unearthed by scientists.

Mosa Mabusa, Council for Geoscience CEO

After qualifying as a geologist from Wits University, Mosa held various positions

at De Beers and Anglo American and worked in jurisdictions as varied as West

Africa and Canada. From his appointment as the Director of Mineral Economics

in the former Department of Minerals and Energy, he was promoted to Deputy

Director-General of Mineral Policies and (Investment) Promotion in 2012. He has

been CEO of CGS since 2017.

What are some of the major goals of the Council for


We have neglected geology in South Africa for the past

four or five decades. Our predecessors did a fantastic job

of conducting geoscience research but, for the past three,

four, maybe five decades we have neglected this work in

South Africa. The correlation between what our forebears

did geologically and the major discoveries that were made,

these things go hand-in-glove. Unfortunately, we have not

built on their work. Previously, we were mining gold; we

were excavating deeper and deeper. Merensky found the

Bushveld Complex and we knew about the manganese

fields and the iron-ore fields. Other than those traditional

mines, the geology of South Africa remains untouched, in

my view. Because we have not continued the excellent

work of our forebears, a huge gap in exploration has been

created. In fact, we seem not to have made any progress

over the last two decades. We used to have 10% share of the

global exploration expenditure budget annually. However,

nowadays, we are sitting below 1%.

The Minister has assured me that cabinet has expressed

a renewed commitment to investing in the geosciences.

Therefore, we have set ourselves the target of working

towards achieving a minimum of 5% of the global

exploration spend.

What are some of the broader economic implications

for exploration arising from surveys conducted by the

Council for Geoscience?

I imagine that one of the most important results is the

amplification of the national mining industry’s contribution

in supporting agriculture. Hopefully, we can lower the cost of

fertilisers and make farmers more successful. Exploration must

target the right minerals to support food security and health.

What is the significance of the new mapping undertaken

by the Council for Geoscience?

Higher-intensity mapping provides much clearer and

detailed information, enabling the exploration community

to make informed investment decisions.

26 | www.opportunityonline.co.za

We have always known about the pegmatite rocks in the Northern

Cape. Pegmatite is a lithium-bearing rock and possibly hosts other

rare earth elements. With mapping at this scale, we can confirm that

we will extend coverage of pegmatites by a further 67%.

The Council for Geoscience published a map in March 2022 presenting

these critical minerals as a new focus area for investors. We presented the

data as a test case to demonstrate that money that goes into geoscience

should not be regarded as a cost centre – it is an investment.

Has Council for Geoscience work attracted investment?

Regarding the pegmatites I spoke about earlier, since the beginning

of the project and following the publication of the map, the DMRE

has received hundreds of applications for prospecting rights in that

area. These applications were directly triggered by the discovery and,

ultimately, the publication of the work that we carried out in that area.

If we accept that an average prospecting right amounts to around

R5-million, I would argue that the work of the Council for Geoscience

has triggered several billion rands in investment from people who

are looking for lithium and other critical minerals.

So mining might be revitalised?

Notwithstanding our 150 years of mining, South Africa’s mining

industry has not even begun! I am hoping that the Council for

Geoscience will help South Africa to properly develop into a new

and world-class mining jurisdiction.

Are there other hotspots besides the Northern Cape?

In the Northern Cape we know that there are abundant base metals,

rare earth elements (REEs), iron ore and manganese. In the North

West Province we have discovered phosphate which is critical,

not only in the production of phosphoric acid but also for other

investor applications. We are aware of abundant fluorspar, which

has application in fertiliser manufacture which will contribute to

food security. In Limpopo Province, we are looking at gold and


Have those minerals occurred in these areas before?

We know that gold is often encountered in Barberton greenstonebelt

type rocks, so we are investigating whether there is economic

mineralisation potential. Accordingly, we have identified targets and

have commenced drilling.

In KwaZulu-Natal we have discovered incredible finds. There are

rare earth elements and we think that there are as yet unconfirmed

prospects for base metals.

So, are you upbeat about prospects in general?

These discoveries are really positive and I am optimistic about future

prospects. That said, we can’t change what is in the ground. Our role

is to test what is there. There are even better possibilities in provinces

that we had always thought did not have much mineralisation. In

the Eastern Cape we are testing a nickel and copper prospect as well

as rare earth elements. If we are successful, this will change how we

look at the Eastern Cape.

New mineral discoveries are being made in many parts of South Africa.

The proximity of the area to ports makes it even more attractive to

prospective investors and developers. We are also looking at mineral

potential and water security in the Western Cape. Recently, when Cape

Town was hurtling towards Day Zero, this was national disaster. We need

to start planning well in advance to avert future crises. Politics must be

taken out of the equation, as we as scientists don’t like that space.

So how do geoscience and Day Zero come together in terms of

aquifers and that sort of thing?

We are looking at characterising and better understanding aquifers and

their potential so that we can begin to plan the water infrastructure of

municipal and provincial authorities for a more sustainable approach to

water management. We need, where possible to help them augment

their water supply.

To give people the information they need to formulate policies?

To make developmental decisions. Our job is to use the science as a

basis for informed policy and human development choices. That is our

job. But we don’t make decisions for authorities, we can only come to

the Minister, MEC or mayor and say, we have done this work and here

is what it says and these are the options that you have.

Can you give me an example?

Our focus is on infrastructure and land use work that has historically

or recently not been given sufficient consideration in infrastructure

development. We supported Eskom with a probabilistic seismic hazard

assessment study for the application of the extension of Koeberg

nuclear power plant. We are working on groundwater and modelling

to obtain a much better understanding of groundwater as a national

asset and how to use it to augment water supply.

www.opportunityonline.co.za | 27


Northam Platinum scores

environmental wins as it increases

output and improves efficiency

Unique and innovative systems help the group expand

production and go greener at the same time.

Northam Platinum’s expansion project at its

Metallurgical Complex has successfully combined

increased output and greater efficiency with

improved environmental outcomes.

Northam Platinum is a major producer of

Platinum Group Metals (PGMs) and Base Metals. These include

platinum, palladium, rhodium, gold, ruthenium and iridium. Base-

Metals such as copper and nickel are also produced. The PGM

concentrate is further refined through a Precious Metal Refinery

(PMR) to produce marketable products.

Improvements were introduced in terms of slag handling at

the PGM Furnaces where an innovative new process has broken

successfully with conventional PGM slag handling practices.

Part of the broader expansion project was to align the Base Metal

Removal Plant (BMRP) to the expansion of capacity at the Processing

Plant. The focus here was on the optimisation of the current plant.

In July 2021, the BMRP began to implement the first phase

of its expansion and debottlenecking project to address the

strategic production growth within the Northam Group. Among

the innovations used in the process was the installation of a

chilling circuit to enhance the process, which is unique to the

Zondereinde Refinery.

Slag handling at the PGM Furnace

Furnace slag across the PGM industry has historically been handled

in what is commonly known as a wet granulation process, which

involves molten slag being quenched in a launder containing

rapidly flowing water. The quenched slag forms granules

which is then transported through various means.

The water used during this process is circulated through

an array of ponds and cooling towers, then reused. Reusing

this water minimises the environmental impact but this

process does have significant water losses due to the steam

that is generated.

In a departure from the PGM industry standard, the Smelter

at Northam Platinum’s Zondereinde operation has taken a leap

into the future by completely changing the way furnace slag

is handled.

During December 2020, after months of planning and

preparation, the granulation system at one of Northam’s

Furnaces was demolished and replaced by built-for-purpose

slag bays.

In a PGM-industry first, molten slag is now deposited

straight into slag bays where it is allowed to cool. Once cooled

it is broken by means of Trackless-Mobile Machinery (TMM)

and transported to the slag stockpiles.

Among the benefits realised through this ground-breaking

innovation is a major reduction in the risk involved in the

slag-tapping and slag-handling processes. The exposure to

water in excess of 70 °C has been completely eliminated and

the frequency of opening and closing of tap holes has been

reduced significantly. Notably, 80% of the injury incidents in

the Smelter were related to this hot water.

A system that continually circulated 800m3 of water through

an intricate system of tanks, pumps, pipes and launders with

all the relevant wear, breakdowns and maintenance was

effectively made obsolete overnight, resulting in a 1 MW

power saving.

A major constraint of the wet granulation system is the fact

that there is a maximum tapping rate which inhibits the use

of slag tapholes during emergency events. The new process

allows the flexibility to run both slag tapholes simultaneously

for extended periods if the need should arise.

The biggest benefit has been the de-coupling of the

Furnace from the slag handling which was the single largest

28 | www.opportunityonline.co.za

cause of downtime on the Furnace. An increase of 15% in the

Furnace-operating factor was realised.

On the back of these realised benefits, a decision was made to

implement the same system on Northam’s newly rebuilt 6-In Line

Furnace at the end of 2021, further compounding the benefits

across the Smelter Operation.

Since starting this journey, Furnace downtime related to

slag tapping and handling has been virtually zero which is a

testament to the quality of the new system and the buy-in from

all parties involved.

Installation of a spent electrolyte-chilling circuit

Exothermic oxidation reactions of the sulphide minerals within the

pressure-leach circuit generate a tremendous amount of energy

which must be quenched by spent electrolyte to control the reaction

temperature of leaching operations. The heart of the new spent

electrolyte-chilling circuit is a two-stage system which reduces the

temperature of the spent electrolyte from 46 °C to 26 °C through

contact with cooled water in a plate-heat exchanger. Subsequently,

the water is cooled to 16 °C through contact with chilled water supplied

from a 235kW water-cooled chiller with a helical rotary compressor.

Good outcomes

Power: 1MW less power is used in slag handling.

Water use: Significant reduction in water use.

Reduced downtime: Improved efficiency.

Furnace capacity: Increase Furnace capacity by 2.5 MW.

Safety: Significant reduction in incidents and accidents (1) due to

the hot water circuits, or (2) by the removal of the hot water circuits.

The BMRP project

A third party metallurgical consultancy conducted a capacity

assessment of the existing BMRP and through processmodelling,

identified the areas of the BMRP which required

additional capacity. The four areas of focussed interventions

that were identified and have been transformed are:

Expansion of the Copper Electrowinning Circuit

The unique two-stage chilling system.

Installation of Vacuum Pan Driers

The final stage of processing before the PGM concentrate is sent

to Northam’s PGM refinery is a roasting step carried out at 300 °C

for a period of 24 hours. In order to minimise the environmental

impact of roasting the PGM concentrate, two Vacuum Pan Driers

were installed. The Vacuum Pan Driers enable the moisture

content of PGM concentrate-filter cake to be gently removed

through agitation and contact with a steam-heated surface. This

prevents the oxidation of the sulphide mineral and eliminates

fugitive gas emissions.

Copper electrowinning.

This expansion involved the addition of six new polymer concrete

cells to the existing 14 cells, together with new antimonial lead

anodes and stainless-steel starter sheets in each of the new cells.

Circuit flexibility was also built into the expanded circuit with

the installation of DC bus-bar isolators which enable the circuit to

be operated with two independent electrowinning cell banks of

10 cells or the full circuit of 20 cells. A new transformer was also

installed to ensure sufficient voltage for plating in the expanded

circuit. The expanded circuit will enable the BMRP to plate

160-tons of copper per month, which is in line with projected

production growth

Installation of additional aging capacity

Recent process changes and future strategic expansion have resulted

in the need of additional aging capacity within the Selenium/

Tellurium precipitation circuit of the BMRP to prevent contamination

of the electrowinning feed solution. A new 200m3 stainless-steel

steam-heated insulated tank has been successfully commissioned

in the BMRP circuit to achieve the required aging capacity.

Good outcomes

Throughput: increased from 380 tons to approximately 480 tons.

Production volume: Increased to one-million ounces.

Atmospheric emissions: Vacuum Pan Dryer reduced emissions and

PGM roaster is in the process of being phased out.

www.opportunityonline.co.za | 29


Inayo Mining

Working together for client satisfaction.

Inayo Mining is a resource-division company which was

formed as a result of a successful joint venture partnership

between Inala Mining Services and Ayona Mining.

The company operates in the mining industry and provides an

array of services including open-cast mining, mine rehabilitation,

extra-large mining plant hire, component refurbishment, mining

equipment and repairs.

Current operations are based in the coal fields of Emalahleni

with plans to extend beyond this basin in the near future. These

expansion plans are consistent with the strategic intent of Inayo

Mining to grow its geographical footprint throughout South Africa.

Inayo Mining qualifies as an SMME and with its unique model of

cooperation and working together, the company is able to merge

the capacity of the various partners to deliver value to clients.


Both directors of the company have considerable experience in the

mining sector. Thando Maseko is an experienced Mining Engineer

and holds a BSc (Hons) Mining Engineering from the University of

the Witwatersrand.

Gideon van Heerden has been a contract miner for more than two

decades and he has a Higher Diploma in Mechanical Engineering

from the University of Pretoria.


Open-cast mining

This method of mining does not use tunnels or deep shafts dug into the earth to

extract minerals. Rather it is a surface technique that extracts ore from an open pit.

Mining rehabilitation

If a mine reaches the end of its useful life for mineral extraction, a number

of environmental or safety hazards may need to be dealt with. Mining

rehabilitation is then undertaken. It can take several forms, including

water treatment, demolition of infrastructure and re-vegetation. It can

also happen during mining operations or as a technique to bring a mine

back to life after it has lain dormant for some time.

Extra-large mining plant hire

Component refurbishment

Mining equipment and repairs.


Inayo Mining has established a strong relationship based on good service

over the years with companies such as:

• Thungela Resources

• Glencore

• The Puckree Group

• Universal Coal

Established: 2017 | Rating: Level 2 BBBEE rated company, with 51% black-woman ownership.


Plot 26, Naauwport, Benicon Park, R544, Emalahleni 1035

Tel: +27 13 590 6884 | Fax: +27 86 543 7751 | Email: admin@inayo.co.za

Website: https://inayo.co.za

30 | www.opportunityonline.co.za

High standards, transformation

and upliftment are the

bedrocks of Inayo Mining

Strategic partnerships are the key to success, says co-founder and director

Thando Maseko, as this growing mining company eyes expansion into Africa.


When was the company founded?

Inayo Mining was founded in October 2017.

What was the motivation behind starting the company? What

inspired you?

As a professional mining engineer, I identified a gap in professional

black individuals participating in the industry. BBBEE was seen as

a policy benefitting a few black elite individuals and those who

are politically connected. This resulted in transformation in the

industry being seen as failure, as BBBEE was not producing black

professionals who could participate meaningfully in the industry

and most importantly, uplift black communities who had been

marginalised from business opportunities in the industry.

This motivated me, a young, black, female mining engineer, to

take the opportunities presented by the policies of this country

and create a truly transformed company which can operate to

high business standards while uplifting those who had been

marginalised before democracy.

How important have partnerships been in your business


Inayo Mining has been built through partnerships. Leveraging on

the strengths of different partners has been the foundation of the

business. Through strategic partnerships with Sandton Plant Hire

and Inala Mining among others, Inayo Mining has managed to

secure contracts and successfully execute these contracts.

This has grown the company to a position where it can buy

assets and build in-house capacity in areas where the company

lacked skills during its inception phase.

Are there any women mentors who have assisted you along

the way?

Due to the nature of the industry most of my mentors have been

male but a female mentor who has been instrumental in my

entrepreneurship journey is Mrs Sindi Mabaso Koyana.

What are some of the particular obstacles that women face

in the mining industry?

Obstacles faced by women in the mining industry are not unique

to problems faced by women in other industries. From a senior

leadership perspective, the patriarchal nature of our society is

mirrored in the industry. This often means women are seen but

not heard.

At the industry’s entry level,

harsh physical conditions in the

workplace mean that women are

subject to physical work which

is often extreme for the female

physique, making it difficult to

perform at high levels.

What are the major services

you provide?

We provide a turnkey mining

solution from topsoil stripping

through to rehabilitation. Our

other services include material

handling and plant hire.

Which of these divisions is

showing the best growth?

We have achieved high growth in contract mining, which is our core

business. This in turn has led to other services growing, such as material

handling and plant hire.

Thando Maseko, co-founder and director, Inayo Mining

Who are some of your biggest clients?

Our biggest clients include Thungela Resources, Universal Coal, Glencore

and the Puckree Group.

Do you have ambitions to grow your geographical footprint?

Inayo has ambitions to grow its footprint, firstly with regard to working

with a different commodity other than coal. We aim to expand from

Mpumalanga in the course of 2023 and move into the African continent

as mining still remains the backbone of most African economies.

The Inayo Mining website refers to a “unique model in the mining

industry” – please tell us more about that.

Inayo considers itself unique as it has built up a company by adopting a

principle which is similar to the likes of Airbnb and Uber. We have grown

a successful company through leveraging of assets and resources from

our strategic partners. This has minimised the risk we face as company

during economic turmoil such as the world experienced during the

Covid-19 pandemic.

We continually evolve our business model to ensure the business

remains sustainable while ensuring our social partners benefit from our

existence, making mining a beneficial venture for all stakeholders.


Optimising energy storage

and thermal balancing

The Wärtsilä Energy team believe that there is a case for South Africa to re-evaluate its

energy consumption and turn to alternative solutions for its daily usage.

South Africa, as an energy-intensive economy, is a

major contributor to greenhouse carbon emissions,

sourcing an estimated 77% of electricity from coal.

However, together with many other countries

across the world, South Africa is committed to

making the necessary transitions to reach net-zero carbon

emissions by 2050. With increasing power outages and the

ongoing threat of loadshedding, the need for sustainable

energy production in the country is becoming more apparent.

This presents an opportunity for South Africa to re-evaluate

energy consumption and turn to alternative solutions for its

daily usage.

Challenges in the energy sector

The latest COP26 finance arrangement, which is assisting South

Africa to transition to renewable energy sources, has gained large

momentum and was vigorously discussed by many participants

at COP27. Of all the energy sources, solar is the most viable and

the most sought-after. However, even in the hottest regions,

the panels can only produce electricity for a maximum of 12

hours a day, therefore only converting a small percentage of

available power into usable energy. This is also the case with

wind turbines. The wind doesn’t always blow hard enough, and

sometimes doesn’t blow at all, to produce the energy needed.

Energy use and preservation is rife with challenges and there is a

need for improvements.

This is where thermal balancing becomes beneficial, as it can store

excess energy from renewable sources. Thermal systems can assist in

creating balance for energy demand and supply, reducing peak demand

and consumption by storing energy for when it is most needed and

increasing its efficiency and reliability. Thus, the conversion and storage

of renewable energy in the form of thermal energy can also aid in the

acceleration of renewables in the energy mix.

The Integrated Resource Plan (IRP), which coordinates the national

drive for generation expansion and demand-side intervention

programmes, supports a diverse energy mix, aiming to develop an

effective balance of energy supply and demand. However, guaranteeing

that people get power when and where needed is not as simple as it

sounds. South Africa’s population is growing at an unprecedented rate,

and with the upsurge of industrialisation in a developing nation, the

need for a continuous supply of energy is skyrocketing. The increase is

due to mounting energy use in households – by heating and cooling

systems for example – and in commercial businesses, like warehousing.

Energy storage: maintaining supply and demand

So, how do we keep the lights on in South Africa with an energy mix

where we have an increasingly higher share, and is energy storage a

solution? To avoid excess energy from being left unused in off-peak

32 | www.opportunityonline.co.za


explosions can

lead to death.

Pipelines are safe when not tampered with. Due to the risk of

tampering with the high-pressure petroleum pipelines, vandalism

and theft incidents can result in fire, burns or death.

Report any suspicious activity near our Pipelines,

call our toll-free number 0800 203 843 or 031-361 1500



Minerals Council South Africa has a fuel cell on the roof of its headquarters in Johannesburg.

periods, we need to store energy correctly. Energy and thermal

storage enable us to save on electricity costs. Wind energy, for

example, can be leveraged overnight, when you use the least

amount of power as everyone is sleeping.

The South African energy storage market is expected to continue

to expand in the coming decades, growing as a key area of energy

services in the future.

The anticipated development in energy and thermal storage

will create opportunities for further growth, and encourage

involvement for manufacturers, suppliers and investors.

Working with a well-developed global logistics chain and

having long-term agreements with trusted suppliers, Wärtsilä‘s

energy storage and thermal solutions match the existing demand

in energy supply by integrating traditional and renewable power

sources and optimising multiple generation assets.

Integrated energy mix solutions

While becoming a global leader in energy supply may seem

ambitious, Wärtsilä affirms that it’s possible for the country to

reach a complete renewable-energy system. Achieving this will

require an energy transition that is supported by

thermal balancing, a mix of energy technologies and

effective battery-energy solutions. One of the ways

in which Wärtsilä enhances the energy lifecycle and

integrates renewables is through the GEMS Digital

Energy Platform. The software suite monitors,

controls and optimises energy systems in realtime.

It can also determine what type of generation

is needed at a particular moment, whether it be

renewables, energy storage or engines. In the case

that a cloud momentarily obscures the sun, GEMS

can prompt the system to rapidly release energy

stored in batteries. This ensures that consumers

have energy stored for when they need it the most

– and the least – and coincides with COP's objective

for reduced carbon emissions.

Government and stakeholder support

Wärtsilä is committed to enabling South Africa’s decarbonisation

objectives. These can be seen in the South African energy mix,

which comprise coal, renewables, gas, hydroelectric and nuclear

power. In alignment with the local zero-carbon emission goals,

green hydrogen is one of the sources that will provide several

opportunities for sustainable energy for the region. Unlike most

hydrogen that is produced from natural gas, green hydrogen is

extracted from water and has the capacity to be stored more

easily, and for a prolonged time, compared to other renewable

resources. As a result, it positively contributes to and promotes

energy security. In support of low-carbon production, industry

stakeholders will need to engage with government and compile

policy reviews and re-evaluation.

The increase in investment in the energy mix and distributedgeneration

capacity will allow for effective operation on the demand

and supply of electricity. If the energy sector can build equilibrium in

this regard, South Africa will ultimately stand a chance of becoming

a supplier in green hydrogen and energy storage and play a more

dominant role as a global competitor in energy supply.

About Wärtsilä

At Wärtsilä, energy storage plays a key role in the company's vision towards a 100% renewable grid. Wärtsilä has built, operated and maintained baseload power plants in Africa

for many years, providing electricity to national grids, mining and industrial clients requiring security of supply. Wärtsilä power plants are the ideal solution for decentralised power

production and an attractive alternative to the conventional model of centralised power plants.

Wärtsilä power plants can be used for base-load applications or for peak-load needs or to complement renewable energy. The company’s engines can handle liquid fuels such as

HFO/LSHS, LFO, LBF or natural gas. Versatile dual-fuel engines can switch between liquid fuel and gas online. With regards to researching hydrogen as a fuel, Wärtsilä is developing the

combustion process in its engines to enable them to burn 100% hydrogen, and engines have been tested with blends of up to 25% hydrogen and 75% natural gas.

34 | www.opportunityonline.co.za

Making renewable

energy accessible

Unlocking sustainable economic

development through Renewable

Energy across Africa and beyond.

SolarTurtle is an ecosystem company. Our vision is

to promote, educate and aid in making renewable

green energy more accessible to traders and small

business entrepreneurs. We envision changing the

lives of women and youth entrepreneurs, two critical

and under-developed sectors of the economy.

Both of these sectors could become critical employment

generators, especially in the post-Covid-19 era. Furthermore, we

are at a stage where we are developing cold storage for off-grid,

emerging farmers. No wastage and a sustainable income. We are

addressing six of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals, namely:

• Zero hunger

• No poverty

• Affordable clean energy

• Reduced inequality

• Industry innovation and infrastructure

• Promote sustained, inclusive economic growth, full and

productive employment and decent work for all.

We believe that naturally, women are nurturers of our society,

who, when empowered, run sustainable green enterprises that

benefit their entire community. Our business model currently

has built-in support and software systems that makes it easier

for aspiring young people to become the social and green

entrepreneurs the African continent needs. Connecting off-grid

communities to reliable, mobile energy sources will create untold

business opportunities for micro entrepreneurs, especially those

in rural areas, peri-urban and in the informal sector.

At SolarTurtle we have always taken pride in the quality of our work,

the experience and professionalism we bring, and the robustness

of our values and behaviours. We are united by a common purpose

to “Inspire Renewable Energy Development across Africa”.

Our vision

To help people help themselves. Our aim is not-for-profit but to create

a business that gets people to realise that if they want to change the

world, they should do it themselves – allowing them to take care of

themselves and their community. This will result a brighter future for

all by alleviating poverty and creating a greener future.

It comes down to a choice. Either you believe anything is possible

and the state of the world can change for the better, or you resign

yourself to the fact that there’s nothing you can do. Arthur C Clark

wrote, “When a distinguished but elderly scientist states that something

is possible, he is almost certainly right. When he states that something is

impossible, he is probably very wrong.” The same principle applies to life.

If you believe that you can’t make a difference then you won’t. It takes

visionaries to point out that anything is possible. As long as you believe

that there is a way you, will never stop looking for it.


Promote women-empowerment

SolarTurtle aims to provide women with the opportunity to run green

enterprises, as carers of the community. By empowering women to run

businesses, we are allowing them to add value to their communities, to be

inspiring role models and to take care of our future generations.

Promote youth-empowerment

SolarTurtle aims to provide youth with the opportunity to run green

enterprises, as the youth are the future of their communities and our country.

By empowering youth to run businesses, we are equipping them with the

tools and experience to become inspiring social green entrepreneurs, thus

allowing them not to be held down by past limitations and allowing them

to create their own inspiring greener futures.

Promote green economy

By starting micro-utility enterprises in rural and informal settlements, a

tangible difference can be made for people who still have to live in the

dark. By exploiting the versatility of renewable energy and a simple business

model, these micro-utility businesses can be started across Sub-Saharan

Africa. SolarTurtle offers less privileged communities products required to

launch their own small mobile-power station businesses, giving them the

power to empower themselves and create a greener future for us all.


Lungelwa Tyali CEO: 0723219070 | Joeanne 0435550860 or 0795081326 | Email to: info@solarturtlesa.co.za | Website: www.solarturtlesa.co.za


Oil and gas


have vast


Petroleum Agency

South Africa sees gas as

a way of transitioning

to a greener future.

The extensive Brulpadda and Luiperd discoveries recently

made by TotalEnergies and its partners have opened up a

world-class hydrocarbon play in the deep ocean off South

Africa’s south coast.

Petroleum Agency South Africa (PASA) is charged with

encouraging and regulating the exploration and sustainable

development of oil and gas, thereby contributing to energy

security for South Africa.

These discoveries are extremely encouraging, and all

evidence suggests far more potential in the area. What is more,

the consortium applied for a licence to produce in 2022, a

promising sign for the creation of a gas market in South Africa.

More specifically, it opens up the prospect of reviving Mossgas,

the gas-to-liquid facility in the coastal town of Mossel Bay.

The field called Luiperd (where 2.1-trillion feet of

contingent gas resources has been found, enough to power

a city the size of East London for five years) and the other

one, Brulpadda (1.3 Tef ), are part of Block 11B/12B.

If this gas were to be piped to Mossgas, then instead of

spending about R12-billion on decommissioning the plant, the

facility could instead start generating R22-billion in taxes and

royalties and save South African taxpayers R26.5-billion through

not having to import oil and refined products.

PASA estimates that the gas found in these blocks could

produce 560-million cubic feet per day of gas for more than

15 years. TotalEnergies’ expenditure on stream phase one

could amount to $3-billion in 2027 and create 1 500 direct

jobs, 5 000 indirect jobs and increase the country’s gross

domestic production by R22-billion.

The plan is to run the gas via a pipeline to a new fixed steel

platform, and from there to use the existing pipeline to get the

gas to Mossgas. Up to 18 000 barrels per day of condensate

and 210-million cubic feet per day (MMcfd) are expected to be

pumped to the facility. Gas condensate is a hydrocarbon liquid

stream separated from natural gas and is used for making petrol,

diesel and heating oil.

One of the most important roles that PASA plays is to evaluate

the credentials of potential explorers or developers. Applicants must

demonstrate that they have the technical capability and financial

resources to carry out the work programmes agreed, as well as any

future development that may ensue. A track record of experience,

a good health and safety record, environmental compliance record

and compliance with oilfield practice is essential. At the same time,

PASA is determined to increase involvement of local companies in

the upstream industry and to develop local capacity. One way of

achieving this is through partnerships between international and

local companies.

Gas as a transitional resource

The transition to cleaner fuels and renewables is inevitable if the

world is to reduce the negative impact of climate change. South

Africa is a signatory to the Paris Agreement and has committed to a

“Peak-Plateau-Decline” carbon emission trajectory. The government’s

policy is to diversify the country’s energy mix which is currently coaldominated

to a lower-carbon future by introducing proportionately

higher renewable-energy resources such as wind and solar into the

energy mix as well as gas-to-power. Gas burns with less than half

the CO2 emissions from coal and additionally has no SOx emissions.

Gas is therefore a suitable transition fuel towards a lower-carbon

economy for South Africa especially since gas-to-power technologies

36 | www.opportunityonline.co.za


are flexible and would therefore complement the intermittent

renewable energy being added to the national grid.

Africa Energy Outlook 2022, a report produced by the

International Energy Agency (IEA), makes the point that Africa

has barely begun to properly exploit its hydrocarbon resources.

Dr Phindile Masangane, PASA’s CEO, references the report’s

statistics to support her contention that Africa could comfortably

continue to export oil and gas even if it started using much more

for its own use. As she told a Moneyweb podcast, “We just need to

make sure that the primary production is used for developing Africa.”

A lot of that produce, she argues, should be used “for our

economic development and reindustrialisation”.

Another benefit of the IEA report is that it demystifies some

preconceptions about gas. Says Masangane, “I think there is a

misconception – sometimes I think it is deliberate – that the use

of oil and gas is not consistent with the decarbonisation strategy.

The report unpacks that.”

Many of the 600-million African citizens who are without

electricity use distinctly environmentally-unfriendly methods to

cook. Masangane notes, “If they were to use gas, whether it is LPG

or natural gas or another form of gas for cooking, that in itself is

decarbonisation because then you arrest the negative impact of

deforestation.” She describes as a “false narrative” the idea that the

use of oil and gas cannot be part of a decarbonisation strategy and

is pleased that the IEA report puts that argument to rest.

The transport sector is another place where gas can play a role

in helping South Africa’s (and the continent’s) transition to a lowercarbon


The uptake of electric vehicles in Africa is very low, with diesel and

the international combustion engine continuing to dominate. “Now

we have seen a trend lately,” says Masange, “where heavy vehicles

switch to natural gas and that reduces your carbon emissions by

more than 30%.” The amount of fine particulate matter (air pollutants)

is reduced in this way, which cleans up the environment and helps

with the decarbonisation strategy.

Mossgas will again become a vital part of the fuels industry if feedstock starts flowing from the promising

Brulpadda and Luiperd discoveries made off the south coast. TotalEnergies and its partners applied for

a production licence in 2022.

petroleumagencysa.com Petroleum Agency SA @sa_petroleum Petroleum Agency of South Africa @petroleumagency


The floor is

buzzing again

Opportunity caught up with Tracy-Lee Behr, Portfolio Director: Built Environment at dmg

events on the sidelines of The Big 5 Construct: Western Cape expo and event. She is

convinced that the appetite for in-person events is coming back strongly.

In terms of the events you run, are you fully back

after Covid?

I would say we are getting there. Our flagship show in

Johannesburg in June 2022 was our first time back. We

saw participation from internationals not being that great

because of shipping backlogs and currency fluctuations

which really impacted the market. So that resulted in

international participation not being where it was in

2019 terms. However, we have seen that the local market

appetite is there. The local market needed to get back to

business and they’re very keen on face-to-face events as a

platform for business engagements again.

Which is your flagship event?

Our flagship show is The Big 5 Construct Southern

Africa which is held in Johannesburg in June and

then we have the regional events in the Western Cape

and KwaZulu-Natal in September. Those are more

regionally focussed, looking at the challenges and the

opportunities within it.

How does the activity at events this year compare with

the last one of these that you hosted?

The floor is buzzing, which is a great indicator that things are

back. At the Western Cape event we had 75 exhibitors, which

is comparable to the last edition. The market is constrained,

though. There are budgetary constraints and that leads to

a cut in marketing.

The construction industry has been hard hit by the last

few years. Now they are dealing with increasing fuel prices

and input costs going up. But definitely the feeling on the

floor is that South Africa as a country is ready for business.

Tracy-Lee Behr, Portfolio Director, dmg events

Have your panel discussions been well attended?

At each of our events we have a stakeholders’

engagement forum. That actually started at what

used to be called the Cape Construction Expo but it’s

evolved now to fit in with our greater portfolio which

is worldwide. The mothership of all events is the really

38 | www.opportunityonline.co.za


large one, Big Five Dubai, which is over 40 years old, and then

we have other regional events in Africa as well.

What is your target market?

Our remit is to get the whole value chain on the floor. We are not quite

there yet, but we do have a number of sectors like building materials,

tools and equipment, mechanical, electrical and plumbing, machinery

and vehicles. In all these sectors we look at getting exhibitors because

we believe that they underpin the value chain.

Our government stakeholders are really important as well. Our

events are geared around an open platform of engagement and

also the strengthening of relationships between the public and

the private sector. The stakeholders’ engagement forum has been

taken to all of our events because it is such a great platform of

engagement. It gives an opportunity to the man on the street who

doesn’t have access to the government stakeholders or the big

private companies to have the conversations and ask the questions

about the challenges that they are experiencing. To try to address

those and look at the solutions that the cities or the provinces are

providing, for example, why it takes so long to get a permit.

This time around we were looking at breaking barriers and

building a better tomorrow. The Western Cape Government has

a red-tape-reduction department and it was good to have the

director talk about exactly that.

Has the conference and events sector come back any different

after Covid?

One thing that we have learnt through Covid was to diversify. We saw

that a lot of our clients had to do just that in the crisis situation that

was Covid. You look at your product mix and you have to diversify, so

we did that in respect of digital events.

While that was very successful, we still feel – and we know –

that people want face-to-face connections. For us, it was about

coming back and doing what we do well and making sure that we

are connecting, that our quality of visitor is very high, that we’ve got

the right people attending the event.

We are connecting buyers and sellers, so the right buyers and

the right sellers. So that that tangible business is being done.

At the Western Cape event I heard from somebody on the floor

who walked in the door and did a deal within 10 minutes. So

that’s fantastic.

Construction vehicles on display at The Big 5 Construct:

Western Cape as the events industry rebuilds after Covid.

Big Five Construct Southern Africa. That is looks at Africa’s readiness

for smart cities and not necessarily building beautiful and pricey

cities that no-one can use. It is really looking about integrating

the communities into the current infrastructure that we have in

terms of smart solutions and looking at what we’ve got, how do we

update it or make it work. We want to integrate that community

that surrounds it, not just a stand-alone white elephant in the

middle of nowhere.

Is Infrastructure South Africa involved in that initiative?

We got to know Infrastructure South Africa for the first time this

year. The desk within the Presidency knows about our events,

they are more invested and involved in our events. We are more

aligned with government stakeholders now than we have been.

Infrastructure South Africa’s remit is to look at the projects that are

feasible and get to market quickly where they can create jobs and

give investors a return on investment, so it’s a good initiative.

Does The Big 5 Construct also have a digital component?

It is not being run as a hybrid this time around. We want to

encourage down-the-line benefits. We want to draw investment

into the country and the region and create those benefits in

terms of business tourism and job creation. We have a very

important part to play in the economy in terms of driving

business tourism.

Your portfolio includes these three conferences. Are there other

built environment expos or conferences that fall under you?

The company also hosts the African Smart City Summit which is

an annual event. It is held in Johannesburg and runs alongside

Exhibitors and visitors enjoy personal interaction after

months of hybrid events.

www.opportunityonline.co.za | 39

Can Kruger’s upgrades go beyond

providing a better park experience?

Vulnerable communities must benefit from infrastructure investment,

argues Kruger Gate Hotel CEO Anton Gillis.

Kruger National Park is set to receive a R370-million

upgrade. The upgrades –which include rebuilding

a gutted shop and petrol stations (burned down

in separate fires), revamps of various tourist and

accommodation facilities around the park and

resurfacing of roads – are set to take place over the next three years.

As welcome as these upgrades will undoubtedly be to park

visitors, they could potentially have a much wider impact. If

implemented correctly, they could also have a positive knockon

effect on the businesses and communities in and around

the park.

One person who knows this all too well is Anton Gillis,

CEO of the Kruger Gate Hotel. Situated on the banks of the

Sabie River at the park’s Paul Kruger Gate, the hotel is close to

Skukuza – the park’s biggest rest camp and the location for its

administrative headquarters.

That means that the hotel doesn’t just have a front-row seat to

Kruger’s abundant flora and fauna, but also to many of the comings

and goings in and around the park.

“Kruger attracted nearly two-million visitors in 2019 and is firmly

established as one of South Africa’s most popular tourist attractions,”

says Gillis. “But it doesn’t exist in a bubble. Communities in and

around the park depend on it for their livelihoods.”

These communities provide the waiters at the restaurants

in and around the park, the hospitality workers at the various

lodges and hotels and the drivers that ferry tour groups around

the park. They also staff the three airports that service the park,

help grow at least some of the food that park visitors eat, produce

the crafts that visitors take back with them as mementos, and so

many other things.

“In 2020 and 2021, the Covid-19 pandemic seriously dented the

fortunes of those already vulnerable communities,” he adds. “With

40 | www.opportunityonline.co.za


how much need there is for increased localised economic activity

in the area.

“In order for that economic activity to come,” he says, “people

need to be excited and incentivised to come to the park. While the

families that come year in and year out are important, you also need

to attract new visitors and give people who haven’t been for a few

years a reason to come back.”

even domestic travel severely curtailed during the early part of

the pandemic and international flights still getting back up to full

speed, it’ll take more than just a resumption of normal services to

revitalise them.”

With Kruger Gate Hotel involved in several community

initiatives, most notably sponsoring upgrades to a nearby primary

school, Gillis is intimately aware of how important the park is and

R100-million expansion

It’s that kind of thinking which informed Kruger Gate Hotel’s

own R100-million expansion, completed in November 2019. The

upgrades included the addition of a specialty coffee shop, an

expanded room count and the construction of a helipad. The hotel’s

Kudyela and Lapa restaurants were also expanded and modernised.

“When we made the decision to invest in the hotel’s upgrades and

expansion, we had a specific vision in mind,” says Gillis. “While we’ve

always tried to blend the majesty of the Kruger National Park and

all the comforts of an upmarket four-star hotel experience, we knew

that we could take that idea to the next level. This is most visible in

our presidential and executive suites, which allow executive groups,

whether family or corporate teams, to have an exclusive, private

experience of the hotel.

“The hospitality sector is constantly evolving and the upgrades to

the hotel allow us to cater to that evolution,” he adds. “They’ve also

allowed us to bring in new guest categories and provide improved

experiences to all guests.”

The Kruger Gate Hotel CEO believes that if the park upgrades are

to make a real and lasting difference, they must always have a bigger

picture in mind.

“Ideally, the upgrades should provide short-term working

opportunities for people around the park,” he adds. “Beyond that, they

should form the basis for ongoing initiatives aimed at attracting new

visitors to the park.

“The Kruger National

Park is one of South

Africa’s greatest assets and

we should aim to get as

much out of it as possible,

in the most responsible

and ethical manner,”

concludes Anton.

About Kruger Gate Hotel

The Kruger Gate Hotel is a lodge-style hotel, with soaring walkways and treetop ambience, which uniquely offers Big Five

safaris in the Kruger National Park with all the comforts of an upmarket four-star hotel experience. Guests' adventures into

the wilderness are perfectly balanced by the hotel’s contemporary relaxation options. Set in a tranquil riverine woodland

of immense trees, a range of elegant accommodation options are on offer, from standard and large rooms to executive

and presidential suites. Special highlights include game-viewing from the Pool Bar with its stunning infinity pool, luxurious

care at the spa and sumptuous dining in the glow of stars and wood fires in the outdoor Lapa.

Anton Gillis, CEO of the Kruger Gate Hotel

www.opportunityonline.co.za | 41


Skills are an

essential driver of FDI

Graeme Williams/Brand SA

George Asamani, Managing Director, Sub-Saharan Africa, Project

Management Institute, interrogates creative responses to finding the

project managers the world desperately needs for economies to grow.

Countries on either side of the equator compete

intensely for foreign direct investment (FDI). It brings

much-needed capital for growth and development,

including technology transfer and skills. It is also a vote

of confidence for the host country.

While multinational companies are always on the lookout for

the next growth market, their decision to invest is driven by a

myriad of interests and strategic reasons, some more important

than others.

According to Investment Monitor, availability and quality

of labour are arguably even more important than cost. Some

multinational companies invest abroad as they require higherskilled

labour, especially in the pharmaceuticals, electronics

and telecommunications industries. When associated with low

cost, higher-skilled labour makes certain countries particularly

attractive to companies in specific sectors. The quality of

labour is fast becoming one of the most critical drivers of FDI, if

not the most.

Data collected from the UN Conference on Trade and Development’s

(UNCTAD) World Investment Report 2020 and the World Economic

Forum’s (WEF) Global Competitiveness Report 2019 shows that countries

with higher-skilled and better-educated workforces tend to attract

more greenfield FDI projects.

At the Africa Summit in London, where PMI was joined on a panel by

Development Partners International, Diageo and Summa, conversations

swirled around the importance of project-management skills. Many

commentators on the day were of the opinion that entering a foreign

market required more than just a business plan and deep pockets. It

involved a strategic process that guides project execution within scope,

allocated budgets and on time, an ideal brief for a project manager.

The global economy needs 25-million new project professionals

by 2030 due to economic growth and development, an increase

42 | www.opportunityonline.co.za

South Africa’s technology-focussed universities are working

together to improve the country’s skill levels.


Technological Higher Education

Network South Africa

As a consortium of technology-focussed universities,

the Technological Higher Education Network South

Africa (THENSA) is geared to address the lack of critical

skills in South Africa. This is especially important in

light of the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR), which

will not only change the nature of how we work, but also create a

host of new jobs that demand new knowledge and dynamic skills.

THENSA’s primary aim is to support the work of its member

institutions and advance knowledge-sharing and good practice.

The network consists of Full and Associate members located across

South Africa, Africa, Europe, the United States of America and

Australasia. THENSA strives to promote relevant, impactful and

globally-competitive qualifications, skills, research and innovation

in partnership with business, industry and research institutes.

THENSA has a track record for developing programmes which

tackle the absence of critical skills and outputs in South Africa.

THENSA’s bespoke PhD, Masters and Supervisory Enhancement

Programmes have contributed significantly to giving lecturers

the opportunity to acquire their PhDs and grow as academics.

This programme, in partnership with the Tshwane University of

Technology (TUT), and with funding from the Department of Higher

Education and Training (DHET), responded to the transformation

agenda and the National Development Plan (NDP) 2030, resulting

in 70% of its cohort of PhDs being black women academics.

Prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, THENSA developed an Online and

Face to Face Entrepreneurship Programme, equipping students with

the skills to support business start-ups and new venture creation.

These Entrepreneurship Programmes are currently available to the

higher education sector. In addition, THENSA developed its Graduate

Employability App (GEA), a portal which tracks graduates, provides

updates on employment opportunities, allows businesses to select

suitable candidates for internships and offers online assistance for

the preparation of interviews and CV building. It delivers information

to universities about curriculum relevance and challenges students

have in industry, ensuring that curricula remain responsive.

In 2019, THENSA partnered with MILZET Institute to run

a programme that upskills and reskills South Africans in the

Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) database, specifically

in the fields of hairdressing, beauty and nails, real estate and

environmental practice.

In collaboration with OBREAL-Global Observatory in Spain

and six European countries, THENSA, through the Erasmus Plus

grant, formed the Higher Education Reform Experts in South

Africa (HERESA) within its member institutions. HERESA seeks

to develop policy that will improve teaching and learning strategies,

Work- Integrated learning (WIL) strategies, Competence-Based Learning

(CBL), Curricula for the 4IR and Entrepreneurship Education.

At the THENSA International Conference held in South Africa in March

2022, THENSA launched WILSA and became a member of the World

Association for Cooperative Education (WACE).

The most critical outcome of the THENSA delegation visit to Ireland

in 2022 was the discussion of the Tourism Education Gateway Platform

(TEG), based on a similar model in Ireland, which THENSA will host for the

purpose of upskilling and reskilling tourism personnel, providing them

with portable qualifications that will contribute to the professionalisation

and internationalisation of the tourism sector.

THENSA was delighted to have secured a three-year grant from

the Department of Science and Innovation (DSI) to build capacity in

strategic areas of academic programming and innovation within the

public higher-education sector. The purpose of this project is to bolster

capacity in the fields of Technology Transfer Innovation, Entrepreneurship,

Research Capacity Development and Commercialisation.

In October 2019, THENSA, in partnership with Technological Higher

Education Association (THEA) in Ireland, established the South Africa-

Ireland Research Cluster Programme, involving a select group of their

respective member institutions. These clusters focuses in the fields of

International Tourism, Research and Training, Work-Integrated Learning

(WIL) and Curriculum Development for the 4IR, Agriculture and Food

Security, COVID-19 Pandemic Management, Waste Management and

the Circular Economy, Space Science, Innovation Hubs and ICT and

Biomedical Engineering, Robotics and Advanced Manufacturing.

Since the conclusion of this Programme, THENSA is happy to report

that the Agriculture and Food Security Cluster has attracted co-funding

to conduct a study on low-cost biological treatment of dairy waste

water. The Space Science Cluster has submitted a grant on the use of

satellite imagery for seaweed farming, and initiated a project aimed at

establishing a Space Academy in South Africa which will offer curricula

that are co-developed and co-taught by South African and Irish academics

and industry experts.

Given the tremendous success of the Research Cluster Programme,

THENSA has received a second round of funding from the Irish Embassy

in South Africa. The new clusters will focus on the Circular Economy

Research Innovation Curriculum for the 4IR, Science Parks and Business

Units and the continuation of the Tourism Research Cluster.

THENSA’s cross-collaborative and inter-organisational approach to

building critical skills will not only address our country’s most pressing

issues, but set a standard of global excellence and competitiveness

that will benefit the lives of all South Africans.

Contact: THENSA Office

Alma du Toit House, 210 Steve Biko Road, Sunnyside, Pretoria 0002

Tel: +27 12 382 4896 | Email: admin@thensa.co.za | Website: www.thensa.co.za


in the number of jobs requiring project management-oriented

skills and retirement rates. As a result, to close this talent gap,

2.3-million project managers and changemakers will be needed

to fill these roles every year to keep up with the demand. In Sub-

Saharan Africa, the market for project management-oriented

employment is expected to grow by 40%, the biggest such

growth in the world.


Rome wasn’t built in a day, nor

was it built by one person. I am

equally sure it had project managers

to ensure it was delivered within

scope, budget and on time.


Skills-based hiring

Domestically, the nature of work has rapidly changed during the

last decade due to emerging technologies and disruptive forces

such as 4IR, AI and automation. Moreover, the skills reset is due

in no small part to the pandemic.

Employers cannot solve the skills gap issue alone; they need

support from educators to build talent pools with skills relevant

to today’s business needs. Studies have highlighted mismatches

between the skills African students obtain and those required

by employers. Governments and youth-serving NGOs have

attempted to address this through skills development

programmes, including entrepreneurship training. Still, the

assumption that every African youth without a job will be

inclined to be an entrepreneur is hardly inclusive.

Despite earning monikers like “last frontier of growth”, Africa

is not without its challenges. The African Development Bank

reports that while 10- to 12-million young people enter the

workforce every year in Africa, only three-million formal jobs

are created annually.

Every project needs a manager. PMI reports that the global economy needs 25-million new project

professionals by 2030. Credit: SANRAL

The answer may be to focus more on skills-based hiring, which

emphasises the specific skills needed for a position rather than

educational credentials or prior experience.

Skills-based hiring can help ensure you fill open positions with

the right talent – whether that person comes from outside the

organisation or your workforce. It can expand your talent pool and

help level the playing field by eliminating some of the unconscious

biases that can creep into the hiring process.

This approach is ideal for Sub-Saharan Africa, where many

people cannot afford to put themselves through universities. You

can only start where you can start and from where you are now.

If you’re currently employed, that is the place to begin with the

skills development opportunities available. If you are unemployed,

there are several free resources online, like KickOff, for you to test

your aptitude for project management.

Rome wasn’t built in a day,

nor was it built by one person.

I am equally sure it had

project managers to ensure

it was delivered within scope,

budget and on time.

About PMI

Project Management Institute (PMI) is the leading professional association for project management and the authority for

a growing global community of millions of project professionals and individuals who use project management skills. PMI

empowers people to make ideas a reality. Through global advocacy, networking, collaboration, research and education,

PMI prepares organisations and individuals to work smarter so they can drive success in a world of change. Building on

a proud legacy dating to 1969, PMI is a not-for-profit organisation working in nearly every country around the world to

advance careers, strengthen organisational success, and enable project professionals and changemakers with new skills

and ways of working to maximise their impact. PMI offerings include globally-recognised standards, certifications, online

courses, thought leadership, tools, digital publications and communities.

George Asamani, MD, Sub-Saharan Africa, PMI

44 | www.opportunityonline.co.za

House of Kreationz – Your Solution for Stylish Events

House of Kreationz is a leading events décor

styling company, with branches in the Western

Cape and Gauteng. Our extensive client-base

of brands and companies includes trendsetters

and leaders in their respective fields.

Through the collective team we possess a

wealth of experience that spans over 20 years.

The company focuses on high-end event styling,

conceptualising and curating each event

into a unique experience. No job is too big or

small for our team of creative event planners,

meticulous coordinators, resourceful project

managers and problem-solving thinkers,

Started shortly after the devastating global

pandemic, the birth of House of Kreationz

was a huge leap of faith. Kreationz, as we are

commonly known, wasted no time in filling a

vacuum in the events industry. The events

market needed an injection of innovative

ideas, fresh creativity and a spiced-up services

offering that would leave clients with an event

experience that will be talked about long after

the last chair is packed away and every power

cord is rolled up.

The Kreationz offering is more than just contemporary

event styling – the company’s alliances

and contacts ensure a seamless turnkey

project management solution.

Our overall offering includes, but is not limited

to, event conceptualization and styling curation,

management, co-ordination, production

and planning.

Kreationz boasts a clientele that includes

major clients like the CSIR, Big Concerts, ZA

Fanzone, GPA Group, Mushroom Productions,

Black Creatives, NCPC-SA and Travel with

Flair to name but a few.

BBBEE Level: 1

Key contact people:

1. Franco Beginsel Position: General Manager

2. Rufus McCarthy Position: Operations Manager

3. Natalie Koopman Position: Director

Physical address: 10 Banchory Road, Blue Valley Golf Estate,

Kosmosdal, Centurion

Tel: 010 157 3266 Cell no: 072 858 7870

Email: franco@kreationz.co.za / ops@kreationz.co.za

Postal address: 10 Banchory Road, Blue Valley Golf Estate,

Kosmosdal, Centurion

Website: www.kreationz.co.za


SETAs and TVET colleges

must up their game in

support of work placement

Extract from the welcoming address to the WorldSkills South Africa

(WSZA) National Competition, held in eThekwini in 2022, by Minister of

Higher Education, Science and Innovation, Dr Blade Nzimande.

It is with great pleasure that we are hosting our 4th WorldSkills

South Africa (WSZA) National Competition, this time together

with a Conference and Career Festival 2022 under the theme:

“Ratcheting up the Production of 21st Century Artisans”.

Ratcheting means the process of taking irreversible steps

in a particular direction.

The direction is the gradual and systematic rejuvenation of

the apprenticeship system. The focus is now on implementing

and scaling up “The National Apprenticeship and Artisan

Development Strategy 2030” with a view to produce artisans fit

for the future as well as the 4th Industrial Revolution.

As South Africa we are, in many respects, fortunate to have a

youthful nation. However, the recent unemployment statistics on

young people are a cause for concern. The 2020 fourth quarter

Credit: College of Cape Town

Labour Force Survey found that about 8.6-million young people

aged between 15 and 34 years are not in education and not in

employment (NEETs).

At the heart of the challenge for post-school education and

training (PSET) is to cater for these youth in our college system,

with vocational education and training as the most important point

of access.

We are determined to grow the Technical Vocational Education

and Training (TVET) sector faster and to enable subsidy and

infrastructure funding that can support its rapid studentenrolment


We now have taken a decision to fund skills programmes offered

by our former Adult Education Centres, now known as Community

Education Training (CET) colleges, to the tune of R200-million.

Furthermore, in helping to draw more young people into

the economy, government has, under the Presidential Youth

Employment Intervention, initiated various youth development and

empowerment initiatives to support young people.

These range from formal education and training, learnerships

and internships as well as support for youth entrepreneurship. Our

initiatives provide the necessary support for young people to take

on their challenges and succeed.

I urge all students to look out for these opportunities, especially

the Workplace-Based Learning opportunities as presented through

our Sector Education and Training Authorities (SETAs) in partnership

with the private sector.

This WorldSkills South Africa programme supports the "Decade

of the Artisan" programme which we launched in 2014 after a

very successful Year of the Artisan in 2013. We host WorldSkills

Competitions in order to stimulate interest of learners, especially

in our TVET sector.

This will contribute towards alleviating skills shortages in South

Africa, especially midlevel skills, as captured in our Occupations in

High Demand, Critical Skills List and the Skills Strategy in support of

the Economic Reconstruction and Recovery Plan.

Further to this, this WorldSkills Competition provides a

platform from which industry partnerships can be established.

Critical to this partnership is the development of a co-leadership

46 | www.opportunityonline.co.za


model in curriculum development, standard setting and tradetest


Government has already spent vast amounts of money to

support our youth through the TVET system, and therefore it

is important that we assist them to transition to the workplace

through appropriate placements.

To this extent, we have, among others, established partnerships with:

• Japan/Toyota on automotive industry training

• Germans on the dual system

• UK to address youth unemployment

• Huawei on ICT skills academies in 22 TVET colleges

• SAMDRA on repair and maintenance of mobile devices.

These agreements include the provision of training for both TVET

college students as well as to give workplace exposure to TVET

college lecturers so that they teach and train in what is currently

needed by industry.

Workplace availability

One of the challenges facing our artisan-training system and

the apprenticeship system is the insufficient workplace-based

learning spaces and opportunities for apprentices. Workplace

availability is the backbone upon which our apprenticeship and

artisanal training system is built.

It therefore follows that much advocacy work and engagements

are required with industry in order to ensure that a conducive

environment is established for the development of Public Private

Partnerships (PPP) to implement apprenticeships and other

required training programmes.

We expect the SETAs to up their game in supporting work

placement of college students and other trainees. In fact, private

training providers in the SETA system must be expected to also

arrange work placement for trainees. Without such work placement

we have no vocational or skills-development system.

Employers are critical in our artisan development as they should

also be in a position to advise our colleges around the curriculum.

We need to come up with even more creative solutions on how to

incentivise and partner with employers and industry to support

skills development.

As we plan massifying the enrolments and building of more

infrastructure in our TVET sector, our colleges should therefore

implement quality industry-driven curricula by engaging the

employers with the purpose of strengthening and improving the

curriculum so that students can be directed on the right path.

We have now also incorporated into our plans that all college

principals must have in their performance agreements with the

department the issue of work placement and partnership with

industry. Any college principal who does not promote work

placement has no place in our TVET college system!

As we near the end of what has been a successful Decade

of the Artisan Programme and the 10th Anniversary of the

White Paper for Post School Education and Training, we need to

escalate artisan training and deepen partnership with employers

and industry.



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or call us on +27 21 137 1744


Shopping centres are wising

up to water security

Big shopping centres such as the Table Bay Mall are encouraged not to rely solely on water infrastructure provided by local authorities. Credit: Zenprop

There are six vital things to consider if you want to keep a large shopping mall well supplied

with water, says Mannie Ramos Jnr, the COO of Abeco Tanks.

Even though Cape Town narrowly escaped a drought

four years ago, water scarcity still plagues most

of South Africa. Recent research from the Water

Resources Group suggests the lack of available water

will worsen in the next few years with a third of the

world’s population expected to be living in significant water

stress come 2030.

For big businesses like shopping malls, which have just about

recovered from the pandemic, the threat of unreliable water

sources spells disaster. Without water, mall tenants like restaurant

chains and hair salons will be unable to operate and shoppers would

be unable to use toilets. Everyone’s health, safety and hygiene would

be at risk if the mall doesn’t have enough water to maintain cleaning

standards and be able to put out a possible fire.

Several South African shopping centres did implement some watersaving

measures during South Africa’s most recent water crisis, but

according to Mannie Ramos Jnr, the COO of Abeco Tanks, installing a

few tap aerators is simply not enough.

Abeco has been supplying steel water-storage tanks to large malls

across South Africa for more 40 years now. The number of malls is now

48 | www.opportunityonline.co.za


close to 80. Abeco’s mall clients include some of the largest in the

country like Cresta, Mall of Africa and Sandton City in Johannesburg,

Canal Walk in Cape Town, Mall of the North in Polokwane and

Oceans Shopping Centre in Umhlanga.

“Malls are a major economic driver in South Africa with more

than 300 000m2 of new leasable retail space set to be completed

across the country in 2022 alone.

“We are seeing a lot of this new retail space being developed

outside of major cities where there is unmet demand. This is

concerning, as we know that remote regions often don’t have

reliable water infrastructure to begin with,” says Ramos.

For them to reduce, harvest, store and recycle enough water to

be self-sustained in the future, shopping malls developers, their

owners and managers must act now. Ramos shares six tips of what

some malls have been doing to secure their water supply:

Storage is key

As many of us have learned from loadshedding, failing to plan is

planning to fail. Storing water in tanks has been done for centuries,

allowing us to measure water consumption and track water saving

for continuity of service. Longbeach Mall in the Western Cape for

example installed five 10 000-litre tanks, which will be used as

backup if the taps ever run dry.

Ensure rainwater harvesting

Although rainfall in South Africa can be unpredictable, using a

combination of rainwater harvesting and innovative storage reduces

the reliance on other sources of water and ensures year-round

supply. “Table Bay Mall is a relatively new shopping development

on Cape Town’s west coast and over the past six months have been

using the contents of their 10 000-litre rainwater harvesting tank

for cleaning and waste management purposes,” explains Ramos.

Filter, filter, filter

Correct filtration can mean grey water can even be used in airconditioning

cooling towers, which tend to use a lot of water. The

two boreholes at Table Bay Mall each have filtration plants so that

the water can be used in the main toilets and urinals and not just

for irrigation purposes.

Building with sustainability in mind

Shopping-mall developers should consider closed-circuited water

systems, where unused water can be collected and then passed

through various systems before being reused around the property.


Several South African

shopping centres did

implement some watersaving

measures during

South Africa’s most

recent water crisis.


Reducing reliance on public water infrastructure

Consider installing low-flow toilets and sinks which connect to

a greywater system. Any non-potable water can be drawn from

large, on-site storage tanks that are filled with rainwater and only

topped up by the municipal grid if necessary. At Table Bay, the

municipal water supply is collected in nine domestic water tanks

(each with 20 000-litre capacity). These have been designed to

supply the mall with reserve water for approximately three days

in the case of water interruptions.

Keeping tabs on global developments

Water technology is constantly progressing with some incredibly

efficient desalination plants already in operation in places like Israel.

Even architects are playing their part, designing buildings in such

a way that they maximise rainwater harvesting. “At Tyger Valley

Shopping Centre in Cape Town, the centre has even appointed a

water expert to assist with scientific water-saving methods for the

future so don’t be afraid to think outside the box and try something

revolutionary,” concludes Ramos.

Water is a scarce resource and yet is one of the most important

in the world, second to air. Without water, nothing can survive,

including business, so it is essential we act now to secure this

precious life-sustaining resource.

About Abeco Tanks

Abeco Tanks is the World’s First Bank for the Business of Water, trusted for nearly 40 years to protect against water scarcity. The company’s steel water-storage tanks are found

in over 35 countries across the globe including Africa, Central America and the Middle East. Abeco is a private, family-owned business together with equity stakeholder and

funding partners, Investec Private Capital and Global Capital empowerment fund.

With its 269 000-square-foot manufacturing facility in South Africa and hundreds of employees, Abeco has erected more water tanks than any other company in Southern Africa,

making it the definitive leader in water-storage solutions. Blue chip clients include Anglo American, Sasol, Chevron, FNB, BP, JP Morgan, Shell, GlaxoSmithKline and Investec.

www.opportunityonline.co.za | 49


Entrepreneurs Organization

provides the backbone

during times of crisis

Entrepreneurs everywhere face tough challenges but in KwaZulu-Natal, issues like inflation and Covid-19

temporarily took a back seat to rioting and flooding during 2021 and 2022.

Entrepreneurs were tested like never before in KwaZulu-

Natal. Cindy Norcott, marketing chair for the peer-to-peer

Entrepreneurs Organization (EO), who herself has survived

the past 28 years running her own recruitment business, says

that having a support network is key to an entrepreneur’s

ability to bounce back.

She believes that to be an entrepreneur, a key success factor is


“Having a sense of optimism, self-belief and courage, despite the

odds, are important characteristics to have if one is considering

starting your own business,” she says, adding that three of her fellow

EO members have demonstrated an inspirational ability to turn

adversity into opportunity during recent tough times.

Credit: Pexels

Connect Space is now in a good space

Bradley Porter: formerly of Flexible Workspace, now Connect Space

Bradley Porter of Connect Space,

a specialist property management

company, was tripped up by both

the Covid pandemic and an ill-timed

decision to expand the business.

He explains what happened to his

former company, Flexible Workspace:

“At its peak, Flexible Workspace had

20 full-time employees, supported

several partner businesses, and

managed six centres split over two

regions totalling over 8000m2.

We didn't realise the long-term

Bradley Porter

impact of the Gautrain on the Sandton

property market. To recover the massive investment in this project,

the city of Johannesburg increased the bulk allowance to boost its

rates base. The result was that the market became a game of musical

chairs with big law firms and other head offices moving out of their

old stale spaces into flashy new ones.

With no new entrants into this market, vacancies remained

high. Couple this with the increasing popularity of serviced offices

which meant that brokers and opportunists were fueling a market

that could never be sustained. The result was an oversupply of

stock and dwindling demand.”

50 | www.opportunityonline.co.za


Connect Space has prime locations available in KwaZulu-Natal.

A failed turnaround strategy and unsuccessful business rescue

attempt left the company facing voluntary liquidation.

“Feeling like our world had just come to an end, we began

navigating our way through the liquidation. At the time I envisaged

locks on doors, ruined lives, repossessed equipment, the sheriff at

my home, rejection and alienation. What we witnessed was love,

compassion and support,” he says.

They found creditors who were prepared to engage, supportive

customers and motivated staff. “This drove us to find a way out,

but we had to get the support of the liquidators. Having presented

our case to them, they agreed to a ’holding pattern’ where we

could continue trading under their administration. In essence, the

old business was dead, but they were giving us the opportunity to

birth a new one,” he says.

It was January 2021. His previous business partner took charge

of the Johannesburg businesses, leaving him two in Durban.

Bradley says that the Covid landscape has created a unique set

of circumstances where the skills he had honed operating in the

short-term and small office rental market over the past 15 years

were perfect to support landlords.

“Today, we’re a startup, a new brand and a new business but

100 times more prepared than before. The market has changed

and so have we. We’re developing a new model, one that suits the

future of space and services and one that will better benefit the

user. Our immediate goal is to build the brand and dominate the

market with a range of products more suited to the agile, workfrom-anywhere


Throughout this change, remembers Bradley, EO provided him with

a safe space and support base while he was “figuring things out”.

Recovering and connecting

Saskia Hill: owner of MCS Debt Recovery and founder of

Connect BPS

Saski Hill’s business was completely destroyed during the July

2021 unrest in KwaZulu-Natal.

“How do you react when you are told that your entire business

has been burnt down? Not through negligence but by political

unrest, something which is totally out

of your control? This is something that

you never expect to happen. It was an

emotional, stressful time,” she recalls.

MCS Debt Recovery counts leading

banks, financial service providers,

insurance companies and retailers

as clients. Connect BPS’s clients are

American based.

It was these clients, together with

staff, suppliers and her network of

business associates who helped her

begin to rebuild her business and,

quite literally “rise from the ashes”.

Saskia Hill

“Every challenge you face in business allows you to build resilience

and endurance which ultimately makes you stronger. When tragedy

struck with the burning of the MCS/Connect building, I had to tap

into that resilience to move forward. My inner strength and courage

was supported by an amazing group of people.

“It is during these challenging times that you call upon the

relationships in which you have invested through the years, your family,

friends, industry associates, mentors and business supporters.

“This includes our EO tribe! Members from around the world

reached out to me to offer assistance. The members were there

to encourage, support and motivate me through the journey of

rebuilding,” she says.

One year later, the building is still not rebuilt. However, she has been

able to re-establish her business and continue her entrepreneurial

journey despite the turbulent economic times.

“As entrepreneurs, we need to have a good understanding of the

operations from the shop floor to the disaster-recovery procedures

The building might not be ready yet, but the staff of MCS Debt Recovery are raring to to.

www.opportunityonline.co.za | 51



“We had to turn to them in a time of need

and they were all there for us!”


(and this cannot be a mere tick-box exercise). It is imperative that you

understand all the processes in your business so that when you need

to rebuild from the ground up, you are aware of all the challenges

that need to be overcome.

“With EO, members don’t merely give advice, they provide

experiences shared, which is a hugely beneficial way to share

information and guidance. It’s great to have members to bounce

questions off,” Saskia recalls.

For Saskia, the quote which is most apt at this time is, “I didn’t come

this far, to only come this far.”

From Covid contraction to African expansion

Matthew Fitzsimons: founder BigEye Branding Africa

In 2021, Matthew Fitzsimons and his

twin brother and partner realised that,

even if their top income projections

materialised, they would not get

through the prolonged Covid-19 crisis.

His now Ireland-based partner had lost

his usual optimism and positivity in the

wake of a complete fall-off in orders and

the shrinkage of the marketing sector

across the continent.

“Most events in Africa had been

cancelled. We have supplied

equipment to mainly big breweries

Matthew Fitzsimons

and soft drinks companies in 47

countries in Africa, and suddenly none of them was having events.

The orders had dried up,” he recalls.

Perhaps the most positive thing to emerge from lockdown, which

forced staff to work from home, was that the whole business began

operating off the cloud. “We realised that there’s no-one that couldn’t

operate from home other than a few warehouse guys. We got rid of

our servers and moved all our systems into the cloud. We challenged

every single system that we had.”

They also cut costs to the bone. “We looked at every single

cost. Is it critical? If not, it must go. It was an opportunity to cut

everything to the minimum. Our staff all agreed to cut their

salaries. The one thing we didn’t stop investing in was our staff

BigEye Branding Africa can create branding for just about anything.

culture. We still ate together once a week. In fact, a great way to

get staff back to the office was to create an environment that they

wanted to come back to. This experience made our company

culture stronger than it has ever been in 18 years. Tough times

brought out the best in us,” he says.

Another thing that emerged from this crisis was an appreciation

for strong relationships with suppliers who are the cornerstone of a

business. Matthew recalls: “We had to turn to them in a time of need

and they were all there for us!”

A turning point came with a decision to merge the business

with another operator in the market, a move that added a

third partner with valuable financial and analytical skills that

the company did not have at that point. As a combined pan-

African marketing company, they intend to lead the game in their

industry going forward.

“When we found ourselves in dire straits, EO came to the party

and helped us out in a time of need which we will never forget. In

the toughest times is when you need EO the most. We have now

turned the corner and see an extremely positive future in Africa for

our business.”

About Entrepreneurs’ Organization

The Entrepreneurs’ Organization (EO) is a global, peer-to-peer network of more than 17 500 influential business owners with 213 chapters in 60+ countries. Founded in 1987, EO is the

catalyst that enables leading entrepreneurs to learn and grow, leading to greater success in business and beyond.

Website: https://www.eonetwork.org/

52 | www.opportunityonline.co.za


Where service is paramount

Universal Link Group, established in 1999, is a market

leader in the logistics and distribution services

sector. We are fast becoming one of South Africa’s

leading e-commerce warehousing, order fulfillment

solutions driven companies with a BBBEE Level 1

accreditation. We offer access to a comprehensive

logistical supply chain service. Our extensive

knowledge assures our clients of a smooth process

flow and desired outcome.


We provide strategic solutions for all your

procurement, courier, e-commerce fulfillment

and warehousing, import and export distribution

systems designed to meet your requirements. We

are an accomplished procurement office, taking the

pressure out of your business of finding the best

solutions, equipment and assistance to obtaining,

locating and implementing your requirements, giving

you a competitive advantage and leading edge.


We are a team dedicated to service excellence

through the process of simplicity and transparency,

making your experience seamless and stress free. We

are committed to explore and adapt innovative ideas,

that achieve maximum supply chain efficiencies.


• Distribution and Warehousing

• Domestic and International Courier

• e-Commerce Order-Fulfillment

• Inventory Management System

• Pick and Pack Services

• Storage (long-term and short-term)

• Mailing and Distribution Services

• Packaging Solutions

• Pharmaceutical Distribution

• Wine Storage and Distribution


• Cape Town: 1 170m²

• Johannesburg: 350m²

• Flexible storage options, including heavy-duty racking,

a high-value goods area and freeflow areas.

• Storage methodology eliminates errors by not shelving

like products together, making picking easier.

Contact details

Unit 22, 31 Junction Road, Tygerberg Junction, Parow Industria 7493

Tel: 021 951 4200 | Cell: 063 575 3447 | Email: info@ulgroup.co.za | Website: www.ulgroup.co.za








Contact your nearest John Deere Dealer

for more information

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