Quarry Southern Africa May 2019 - Page 19

WINNING POT OF GOLD AT THE END OF THE RAINBOW A rainbow hovers over Roodepoort Crushers’ sand processing equipment. By Eamonn Ryan | All photos by Eamonn Ryan and Ntsako Khoza Polokwane is a Limpopo hub for concrete manufacturing. All around lie granite outcrops and river beds, with a number of quarries supplying sand and aggregate into the industry. Roodepoort Crushers is the newest and highly successful, something management attributes to its focus on servicing local customers while others have chased the mirage of public infrastructure. www.quarryonline.co.za  N estled in a 4.5km radius at the edge of Polokwane used to lie three quarries, each with their own management style. With enormous road projects planned in and around Polokwane, two of the quarries geared up for boom times. Yet, when the roadworks commenced, instead of using the existing quarries, the contractor apparently opted to establish its own borrow pit in the vicinity. One of those quarries spent close to R200- million in upgrading its Polokwane quarry, only to overextend itself and ultimately shut it. The second also expanded heavily during the construction boom before the 2010 FIFA Soccer World Cup, and the group experienced financial difficulties after listing and buying a number of quarries at inflated prices. Jannie van Waveren, director of Alpha Sand, believes that the success of Roodepoort Crushers is its focus on bread-and-butter local customers, as opposed to chasing projects of temporary duration. By focusing on a strict ethic of service — and treating even the smallest customer the same as larger customers — Roodepoort Crushers, the newest of the three having broken ground just five years ago, has consistently grown and expanded. Its first five years of operation were only on mining permit, limiting management willingness to invest to the full. In February this year it finally received its own mining licence from the DMR, and the foot is now off the brake. Roodepoort’s success is that it has a customer base which is not just reliant on the Polokwane market — which itself is a dynamic and rapidly expanding metropole — but which manufactures cement-based products that are supplied all over the northern part of the country. “We’re a family-owned business started by my father 40 years ago, Alpha Sand. There were only two dominant players at the time and the market was in dire need of competition. At Alpha Sand we have prided ourselves on our service and QUARRY SA | MAY/JUNE 2019_17