What are the unique competitive advantages of South Africa as a place of investment?
Among the opportunities to be taken advantage of in South Africa are its wealth of natural resources, increased attention in the renewables and oil & gas sector internationally, and the abundance of specialised skill-sets available in its labour market.
Likewise, South Africa’s willingness to allow foreign specialists to step in and combine their knowledge with ours is extremely positive. Looking at emerging markets a few steps ahead of South Africa, there is a common focus to create jobs and ensure companies are more sustainable – a massive emphasis is being placed on this within our country as well.
PCM Consulting focuses on sustainability. We play a significant role in providing energy and water solutions and contributing to the development of infrastructure, as well as the sustainability of other companies. Other opportunities come from the need for support in the mining, infrastructure, and energy sectors. Similar service requirements come from neighbouring countries. For example, we have a symbiotic relationship with Lesotho, where South Africa provides them with assistance with the management of their water, while they provide us with water resources.
Combining various technologies such as energy, water treatment and waste management with the end goal of creating micro grids, provides opportunities for employment and ultimately sustainability of facilities.
“…There are 2,000 renewable energy players in South Africa, but not as many with registered engineers or a holistic solutions focus…”
What was the reasoning for your diversification into the investment and labour sectors?
From a consulting environment, PCM was set up to deliver project and engineering services to work on various projects. We decided to create a core team that focuses on multiple projects relating to different sectors and bring in the additional resources as and when required.
The intention to diversify into investments, stemmed from creating project opportunities through an investment platform and delivering services aligned to our resource skill set. Part of the growth and sustainability intent of the company is to own, manage and operate some of our project investments.
Most of our team come from the petrochemical, mining, energy and infrastructure development sectors. PCM Consulting’s objective for the next 25 years is to focus on green initiatives, drive renewables and moving ahead to a more sustainable South Africa. We have decided to concentrate on solar, water, waste and facilities management. These now make up 85% of our business focus.
What sort of projects are you working on in South Africa right now?
We are involved in energy – wind, solar, bio-gas, waste-to-energy and waste-to-gas. We are busy with a few micro grid solutions, some of them being in detailed design phase and some in implementation.
Due to the existing water crisis in South Africa, specifically to Cape Town, we are focusing on some key projects in this province. We are also busy with a micro grid solution at a mine closure between Zimbabwe, Mozambique and South Africa, where we have a waste water to drinking water initiative as well.
Last year, we successfully completed the first modular waste-water to potable water plant in South Africa, which recovers between 65-70% of the facilities own water demand. This is a massive turnaround in terms of saving water and is the most sustainable water saving initiative one can utilise.
There are many multinationals and local companies working in the renewable energy space. How do you differentiate yourself?
There are 2,000 renewable energy players in South Africa, but not as many with registered engineers or a holistic solutions focus. When we look at a facility, we envision how we can use it realistically and see how we can reduce the overall costs, energy and water demand and then size the technology accordingly.
What do you want to leave behind at PCM?
I want to create a culture that is positive and innovative. My vision is invested in looking for opportunities, make a valuable difference and contributing to the people around me while enjoying what I am doing. This vision may only be achieved with the combined efforts of a great team. We want to impact facilities and families positively because when we see people, we see families behind them.