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In April 2019, DRA Global and SENET, key players in the minerals processing, project management, project delivery and engineering industries, merged their strengths within the EMEA region (Europe, the Middle East and Africa) to create an African and Middle Eastern engineering and project delivery powerhouse.

DRA Global’s EMEA Executive Vice President, Alistair Hodgkinson, SENET’s Managing Director, Darren Naylor and James Smith, Minopex’s Executive Vice President give some insights into the enhanced total solutions offering of the organisation.

This article first appeared in Mining Elites in Africa 2020

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“The ‘DRA-SENET merger’ was a landmark transaction for our industry in Africa,” says Hodgkinson.

“Over the last three decades DRA has grown exponentially through a number of acquisitions which has sharpened our offering to clients across markets and sectors.

“Africa remains a core focus for the Group and the addition of Senet’s capability into the wider DRA group will deliver an enhanced solution to all our clients. 

“Our commitment is to maximise our combined expertise so that we continue to be recognised as the partner of first choice to all clients and stakeholders in the region”.

“Over the past year the DRA Global and SENET consolidated offering has yielded impressive results. The integrated mining, minerals processing, hydro-metallurgical, projects and materials handling expertise across a multitude of commodities and capabilities within the African mining and minerals sector offers a unique proposition.

Read: DRA Global continues growth path with SENET merger

“We’ve been maximizing the potential of our different skills and experience to really add value to clients and their projects”, adds Naylor.

Both DRA Global and SENET have extensive experience in project origination and delivery, as well as turnkey operations and maintenance services.

Through its wholly-owned subsidiary, Minopex, DRA Global provides insight, analysis, strategy and advanced technology to help clients make the best operational decisions within specific time and capital constraints.

Recently, Minopex has evolved as a business to strengthen its service offering. The organisation was formerly dedicated to plant Operations and Maintenance (O&M) contracts from its head office in Johannesburg, South Africa, but through strategic organisational alignment, Minopex can now service the entire mining industry value chain in the EMEA region.

A critical business division

Minopex’s capabilities now include a focused service offering to clients along the value chain.

In essence, the organisation has taken its extensive operate and maintain skillsets and reengineered them, which has opened the door to meet the specific needs of a far more diverse mining clientele.

Minopex, already recognised as the leading plant O&M service provider in the African market, will now cement its position in the industry as the plant and mine optimisation and operations expert across the EMEA region.

“We became acutely aware of the need to add value to the broader mining industry though our expertise. There are fewer large greenfield projects being developed at present, but we are now able to offer our solutions within all client segments and drive significant value-add opportunities,” Smith notes. 

Naturally, as the organisation now operates within the brownfields sector, it can establish a partnering and solutions driven relationship with clients who can quickly see the benefits of the plant optimisation techniques Minopex can deliver.

Smith added, “We often find processing facilities in challenging situations, operationally, and now we have an operating model that can offer solutions.”

Through the redefinition of its capabilities, Minopex has also restructured the business – to better showcase its regional expertise and coverage. The establishment of a dedicated South African business – Minopex SA – allows alignment with Mining Charter III’s requirements.

“In doing so, we support local procurement which mining companies are looking for in their contract partners,” Smith outlines.

As a unified entity, DRA Global and its subsidiaries SENET and Minopex offer a total solution. Together the organisations have a clear view of what it takes to advance studies through to successful project implementation and ensure the efficient operations and maintenance of client assets.

Read: Minopex repackages capabilities across the value chain

Like most sectors, the global mining industry is experiencing a steady transition from the knowledge age to the digital age and the organisation’s holistic view of projects serves clients well in optimising assets from conceptualisation through to ongoing maintenance.

This also gives rise to impressive innovation and problem solving that considers the ongoing rise in operating costs and complexity of ore bodies, safety, as well as increased client pressures.  

Consulting and advisory: A complementary service offering 

DRA Global has witnessed a notable increase in the demand for its consulting services.

“We are already recognised through our superior consulting, and project development services by clients all over the world.

“Our multidisciplinary specialists, from geologists through to expert engineers, provide comprehensive analyses and accurate evaluations to inform investment and mine development decisions.

“Clients partner with us to meet all their conceptual, pre-feasibility and bankable feasibility study requirements and we are proud to have been selected to consult on some of the largest projects within the African continent, across almost all commodities”, says Hodgkinson.

“Similarly, while Minopex has been advising its clients since inception, the establishment of a formalised Advisory team enables it to “leverage the substantial expertise already within the business to help guide clients to enhance their operations”, Smith adds.

Through this division, Minopex can now directly link its experts in specific regions and commodities to the client. This ensures optimal benefits of specialist knowledge – which includes value engineering, specialised work and training, operational readiness as well as audit and assurance work.

Together, DRA Global, SENET and Minopex create a formidable offering, with an impressive African portfolio and specialisation, alongside counterparts in Asia-Pacific and the Americas regions.

This extensive geographic footprint continues to solidify the organisations’ reputation as a global leader in engineering services and project management. 

DRA Global is the largest, resources focused, independent specialist in minerals processing, engineering and operations and maintenance services on the African Continent.