http://www.engineeringnews.co.za
  SEARCH
Login
R/€ = 13.13Change: -0.02
R/$ = 12.07Change: -0.13
Au 1187.17 $/ozChange: -20.08
Pt 1125.50 $/ozChange: -23.50
 
 
Note: Search is limited to the most recent 250 articles. Set date range to access earlier articles.
Where? With... When?








Start
 
End
 
 
And must exclude these words...
Close Main Search
Close Main Login
My Profile News Alerts Newsletters Logout Close Main Profile
 
Agriculture   Automotive   Chemicals   Competition Policy   Construction   Defence   Economy   Electricity   Energy   Environment   ICT   Metals   Mining   Science and Technology   Services   Trade   Transport & Logistics   Water  
What's On Press Office Tenders Suppliers Directory Research Jobs Announcements Letters Contact Us
 
 
 
RSS Feed
Article   Comments   Other News   Research   Magazine  
 
 
Mar 16, 2009

SA, Australian consultancies merge to form ‘top 60’ global engineering force

Back
Aurecon CEO Paul Hardy explains the rationale for the three-way merger that created the company in a conversation with Engineering News Editor Terence Creamer. Cameraperson: Lizelle Cronje. Editing: Darlene Creamer. (16/3/2009)
 
 
 
Engineering|Expertise|Africa|Building|Consulting|Eskom|Mining|PROJECT|Projects|Resources|transport|Water|Africa|Energy|Services|Environmental|Infrastructure|Power|Water
Engineering|Expertise|Africa|Building|Consulting|Eskom|Mining|PROJECT|Projects|Resources|transport|Water|Africa|Energy|Services|Environmental|Infrastructure|Power|Water
engineering|expertise|africa-company|building|consulting-company|eskom|mining|project|projects|resources|transport|water-company|africa|energy|services|environmental|infrastructure|power|water
© Reuse this



Two leading South African consulting engineering companies officially merged with one of Australasia’s largest infrastructure advisory companies on Monday to form a new global ‘top 60’ professional technical services group, with a combined revenue of $650-million.

The new company, called Aurecon, emerged as a result of a three-way merger of the capital and skills bases of Connell Wagner of Australia, with those of Africon and Ninham Shand, of South Africa, to form a new 6 700-employee entity, with 87 offices in 27 countries.

Aurecon would be headquartered in Singapore, and would seek to position itself as a large-project specialist across the infrastructure milieu, from transport to energy.

It saw particular opportunity in Africa’s power market and hoped to emerge as an “A-list” adviser to South Africa’s power utility, Eskom, which was pursuing a R385-billion, five-year expansion programme.

While the current global economic crisis had reduced market visibility in certain sectors, particularly in building and resources, the new company also saw potential upside as a result of the unprecedented response from governments, given that many of them had placed infrastructure at the centre of their economic stimulus proposals.

Aurecon would remain privately owned by its 600 invested partners and there was no intention to take the company public. But South Africa’s black economic-empowerment imperatives had reportedly been recognised and incorporated into the final ownership model.

On a pro forma basis, Connell Wagner contributed some 70% of the combined revenue to the merger entity, with the South African partners offering the balance, positioning the new entity in the top 60 of the yearly Engineering News-Record league table of international consulting engineering and architectural groups by turnover.

GERWEL TO CHAIR NEW GROUP
Its chairperson would be South Africa’s Prof Jakes Gerwel, who played  the role of DG in former President Nelson Mandela’s government and who currently occupies several high-profile nonexecutive board positions, including the chairpersonship of South African Airways.

Paul Hardy, previously the CEO of Connell Wagner, would be the company’s inaugural global CEO, while Africon’s former CEO, Dr Gustav Rohde, had been appointed CEO responsible for Europe, the Middle East and Africa (AME). The previous MD of Ninham Shand, Arnie Möhr, would assume the role of deputy chairperson for the so-called AME zone.

The new entity would seek to participate in large-scale integrated infrastructure projects across the AME region, as well as the Asia Pacific.

Speaking at a launch function in Johannesburg, Hardy stressed that the consolidation, which had taken some 11-months to consummate, was a “merger of equals” and that it would enable the group to offer a broader range of expertise across continents.

Currently, the transport, building, mining and industry, and environmental market segments contributed about 20% each to the combined entity’s fee income, with the balance arising primarily from the power and water segments.

ORDER BOOK STILL STRONG
Hardy said that the global company still had a solid order backlog, while Rohde indicated that the order book for the AME region gave it comfort for the next 9-month to 12-month period.

Rohde indicated that Aurecon would be four times larger than its nearest South African rivals, which included firms such as Stewart Scott, BKS and Kwezi-V3.

Meanwhile, Hardy argued that the group’s newfound critical mass would position it to bid for far larger projects, including the power-related work in Africa that in recent times had gone to European and American consultancies.

Approval for the formation of Aurecon had been provided and is unopposed by the South African Competition Commission.

Hardy also stressed that no jobs would be shed as a direct result of the merger, stressing that there had been very few points of overlap between the three merging partners.

“This was a merger made in heaven,” Hardy quipped, arguing that no thought had been given to calling it off as a result of the global economic meltdown.

 

 

 

Edited by: Terence Creamer
Creamer Media Editor
© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Other Infrastructure News
While a healthy appetite for investment in government’s infrastructure development programme existed among international and domestic providers of capital, policy coherence, a clear roll-out strategy and a champion in government were critical to triggering this...
Under the auspices of the World Economic Forum (WEF) on Africa, being held in Cape Town from June 3 to 5, South Africa will reiterate its stance that it is open for business, showcasing what it has to offer other countries and global business. The event, which would...
The head of the European Union (EU) Delegation to South Africa, Ambassador Roeland van de Geer, expects a quieter year in relations between the 28-member-country bloc and South Africa, following an action-packed and, at times, tempestuous 2014. Besides a high-profile...
More
 
 
Latest News
All grades of petrol will increase by 47c/ℓ on Wednesday, the Department of Energy announced on Friday. The reef price for unleaded 93 and LRP petrol was currently standing at R12.61/ℓ, while unleaded 95 cost R12.89/ℓ.
JSE-listed Tower Property Fund has acquired the Link Hills Shopping Centre, in Waterfall, KwaZulu-Natal for R160.9-million from The Sabre Trust and Matlu Family Trust. The shopping centre, on Inanda Road, was situated in an upper-high-growth residential area, next to...
South Africa recorded a trade deficit of R2.51-billion ($207-million) in April from a revised shortfall of R9-million in March, data from the revenue agency showed on Friday. Exports fell by 7.5% to R84-billion, while imports were down 4.8% to R86.5-billion on a...
More
 
 
Recent Research Reports
Steel 2015: A review of South Africa's steel sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Steel 2015 report provides an overview of the key developments in the global steel industry and particularly of South Africa’s steel sector over the past year, including details of production and consumption, as well as the country's primary carbon...
Projects in Progress 2015 - First Edition (PDF Report)
In fact, this edition of Creamer Media’s Projects in Progress 2015 supplement tracks developments taking place under the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme, which has had four bidding rounds. It appears to remain a shining light on the...
Electricity 2015: A review of South Africa's electricity sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Electricity 2015 report provides an overview of State-owned power utility Eskom and independent power producers, as well as electricity planning, transmission, distribution and the theft thereof, besides other issues.
Construction 2015: A review of South Africa’s construction sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Construction 2015 Report examines South Africa’s construction industry over the past 12 months. The report provides insight into the business environment; the key participants in the sector; local construction demand; geographic diversification;...
Liquid Fuels 2014 - A review of South Africa's Liquid Fuels sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Liquid Fuels 2014 Report examines these issues, focusing on the business environment, oil and gas exploration, the country’s feedstock supplies, the development of South Africa’s biofuels industry, fuel pricing, competition in the sector, the...
Water 2014: A review of South Africa's water sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Water 2014 report considers the aforementioned issues, not only in the South African context, but also in the African and global context, and examines the issues of water and sanitation, water quality and the demand for water, among others.
 
 
 
 
 
This Week's Magazine
While strongly welcoming the promulgation of the new Part 101 of South Africa’s civil aviation regulations, governing the commercial operation of civil remotely piloted aircraft (RPAs) in South Africa, the Commercial Unmanned Aircraft Association of Southern Africa...
LSM Distributors has contracted engineering consultancy WSP | Parsons Brinckerhoff Africa to undertake the R100-million restoration of the 54-year-old Kyalami racetrack, situated in Midrand. The restoration will assist in re-establishing it as a venue for...
South African Defence Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula has expressed the hope that the defence budget will be significantly increased over the next five years. She did so while addressing the media in her recent budget vote media briefing. The 2015/2016 defence...
The African Development Bank (AfDB) has been an implementing agency for the Global Environment Facility (GEF) since 2008. The relatively young portfolio has 28 projects over 30 countries on the continent according to the 2014 AfDB and GEF annual report released...
PAUL SPEAR Training and development should be an integral and proportionate part of the long-term strategy of all companies, regardless of their size
Investment in South African youth through apprenticeships and learnerships will not only create direct benefits for businesses but will also contribute significantly to job creation and socioeconomic transformation in the country.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Alert Close
Embed Code Close
content
Research Reports Close
Research Reports are a product of the
Research Channel Africa. Reports can be bought individually or you can gain full access to all reports as part of a Research Channel Africa subscription.
Find Out More Buy Report
 
 
Close
Engineering News
Completely Re-Engineered
Experience it now. Click here
*website to launch in a few weeks
Subscribe Now for $96 Close
Subscribe Now for $96