Concrete convenience for Africa

29 July 2015

Well-resourced, Putzmeister South Africa is a reliable provider of one-stop concrete solutions to construction sites in sub-Saharan African countries

Driven by the philosophy ‘African solutions for African needs’, South African-based manufacturer of concrete pumps, mortar machines, industrial pumps and truck-mounted transit mixers, Putzmeister South Africa, is able to meet the exact requirements of mega infrastructural projects in sub-Saharan Africa.

While most South African suppliers engage local agents, Putzmeister South Africa’s Rudy Myburgh tells Concrete Trends that their organisation works more efficiently by dealing with sub-Saharan Africa clients directly from South Africa.

“As soon as we sell a machine to a customer a relationship starts. We believe that a product is only as good as its after-service. Hence, we ensure that every machine that we have sold is functioning perfectly.
“When a customer experiences a problem, we often use telephonic troubleshooting. However, when we can’t solve it that way, we send someone. We have several travelling technicians on hand,” he says.
Putzmeister offers a comprehensive after-sale service to its customers in Africa and its warehouse in Honeydew, Johannesburg, has a steady supply of replacement parts.

Practical solutions

Through experience and timeous market research, Putzmeister has succeeded in developing a market outside South Africa, says Myburgh.
“We realised that, while technology that works in South Africa is generally accepted, it is not always practical. That’s why, with our factories, we have developed low-tech Africa-specific machines that have simplified hydraulics and electronics making fault finding easier.

The products are simple, manually operated and are generally diesel-driven – convenient for parts of Africa where there is little or no access to electricity,” he explains, adding that although low-tech, the products are made to Germany quality specifications in accordance with ISO 9001 standards.
With guaranteed availability of machines and spares from its factories, Putzmeister is able to meet demand in any country within their allocated region.

Tailored turnkey package

Putzmeister’s unique approach to African needs is also reflected in turnkey packages that are tailor-made for its customers. Putzmeister South Africa supplies the batching plants where concrete is produced, and truck- and trailer-mounted concrete pumps and concrete truck mixers for a complete concrete solution.
“With regard to Africa, we have had to diversify and broaden our product spectrum to create a convenient one-stop-shop service,” explains Myburgh.

On the local front

As buildings in Cape Town and Sandton become higher and more complex, the requirements for pouring concrete are increasing. The material must be transported as quickly as possible to each point of the structure being constructed – and with minimal effort.

This cannot always be achieved with truck-mounted concrete pumps because their possibilities and ranges are limited. An effective and extremely efficient alternative is to combine stationary concrete pumps from Putzmeister and the MX range Stationary Booms. This successful combination bypasses distances effortlessly and ensures precise and very efficient concrete placing on the site. The MX modular system facilitates almost unlimited variations by using different combinations of booms and substructures with differing attachment points and self-climbing capabilities.

“These MX placing booms will soon be part of the Sandton skyline for the coming months as construction continues”, Myburgh says. Putzmeister feels that the MX placing booms system will become an integral part of any high-rise building project.

Remarkable growth

Putzmeister’s unique African approach has paid off, with tremendous growth experienced in countries such as Namibia, Botswana, Mozambique, Malawi, Zambia, Tanzania, Kenya and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Its recent supply contracts include Dar Es Salaam-based projects – the Pension Towers and the Port Authority Building which will be the tallest buildings in the area once completed – the I-Towers Phase 1 and 2 in Gaborone, Botswana, and the expansion of various mines in the DRC and Zambia.

Myburgh believes the company’s success in implementing German machines in Africa has been facilitated by the success of Putzmeister products in projects globally. “The fact that our brand is well known often opens the door for us,” he says.

He adds: “What works to our advantage is that every construction project in Africa needs a concrete pump. Further, we are the only group that can supply a truly turnkey project in sub-Saharan Africa including the Indian Ocean Islands (Madagascar, Reunion, Seychelles, and Mauritius).”

With the South African construction and in infrastructure sector currently stagnant, Putzmeister hopes to capitalise on steady demand for complete concrete solutions in sub-Saharan Africa.
Putzmeister will be present at Bauma 2015 at NASREC in Johannesburg from 15-18 September 2015 to increase their footprint.

More information from Rudy Myburgh, Tel:+27(0)11 794 3790/


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