Outsourced plant operations and maintenance specialist Minopex South Africa, a member of global multidisciplinary engineering firm DRA, believes that 2016 will be a year of diversification for the company, in terms of the commodities that it will be servicing, business development executive RENIRA REDDY tells CHANTELLE KOTZE.

As a specialist in the field of outsourced operations and maintenance of mineral processing plants in the coal, gold, platinum, chromite and diamond sectors in South Africa, Lesotho, Botswana, Tanzania, Mozambique and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Minopex has been working hard to ensure that it is prepared to take on work in any commodity going forward.

"In 2016, we expect to be awarded new projects in the phosphate, iron ore and coal sectors in Africa," says Reddy.

The 1,500-strong Minopex team in Africa comprises process, mechanical and electrical engineers, including specialised maintenance artisans and experienced operators who are able to unlock value for clients by improving minerals processing plant efficiencies through optimisation, to ensure that it unlocks further value for clients and adds to their bottom line.

Providing services tailored to suit client needs, Minopex offers clients contract management and administration; purchasing, store control and asset management; training and skills development; sub-contractor management; plant process control and analysis; scheduled and preventative maintenance; metallurgical quality management, control and analysis; as well as health and safety, environmental, waste and tailings-dump management.

Minopex operates and maintains 14 processing plants for clients in Lesotho, Botswana, South Africa, Tanzania and Saudi Arabia, ranging from platinum group metals and chromite concentrator facilities, to coal processing facilities and diamond processing plants.

Minopex’s clients include:

  • Northam Platinum
  • Aquarius Platinum
  • Phola Coal
  • Keaton Energy
  • Gem Diamonds
  • Lucara Diamonds
  • Vale Mozambique
  • Ma’aden Gold and Base Metals

Reddy says that by handing over the operation and maintenance of plants to Minopex, upfront capital costs on equipment and engineering facilities at new mines can be reduced; while operating costs at existing mines can also be reduced.

In addition, Minopex is able to guarantee continuity of production, having the flexibility to manage exceptional conditions and being able to remain focused on the specifics of the operation under its control, to ensure that it achieves the financial and quality goals of the contract.

While larger mining companies operate their mines on a traditional owner/operator basis many juniors still prefer to contract the operation of their processing facilities to a specialist, as it eliminates unforeseen costs and secures proven skills, technologies and associated systems.

When asked why potential clients should make use of the services of Minopex, MD Gerhard Hendriksz says, that Minopex will be able to do it ‘FASTIR’ than anyone else including the clients themselves.

Minopex has therefore refined its project delivery methodology to ensure that it is able to deliver a service that is faster and more efficient than its competitors’.

  • F: Minopex is FOCUSED on delivering a pre-determined set of measurables agreed with our clients on the efficient and effective operation and maintenance of their minerals processing plants. This includes well-trained processing and maintenance teams working strictly according to the deliverables of the contract.
  • A: Each Minopex team is led by a site manager who will be held ACCOUNTABLE for delivering the service to the client as agreed within the outsourcing contract. This accountability is based on a penalty / incentive model that drives performance and therefore accountability.
  • S: Minopex has developed its own in-house SAFETY and risk management system known as the Minopex Risk and Safety Management (MRSM) system. This system is an integrated ISO 9000/ISO 14000/ISO 18000 certified system that incorporates quality, safety and environmental into one auditable system and as such the company has a multi-listed accreditation giving the client the confidence that his plant will be operated and maintained to the highest international standards.
  • T: Minopex will always strive together with its sister company DRA to use the latest TECHNOLOGY available, to the benefit of the client. This will include maintenance and procurement systems as well as a team of graduates focusing on the use of better reagent combinations as well as better equipment to improve the client’s overall bottom line.
  • I: One of Minopex’s key values is to execute each outsourced contract with the highest level of INTEGRITY. This value will be driven from the top down ensuring that each employee understands what is expected from them.
  • R: Minopex endeavours to approach each project with RESPECT for the client, fellow employees and the environment in which it operates. This ensures that all stakeholders from the client to the community are accommodated.