Mar 02, 2012
SA group to boost technical education and use air team to attract young to studyBack
Aviation|Construction|Africa|Education|Eqstra|Industrial|Rental|South African Airways|Africa|Ireland|South Africa|United Kingdom|Equipment|Industrial And Mining|Maintenance|Mining|Public Relations Aspect|Arnie Meneghelli|Ellis Levin|Stewart Lithgow|Walter Hill
© Reuse this
“We employ in excess of 1 500 technical artisans and we have operator and technical training academies, with, on average, 350 trainees. We need to feed that,” he points out. “The ultimate aim is that the technical high schools will feed our training academies and we can keep our equipment operating.”
To promote interest in technical education and careers among young people, Eqstra announced last week that it is now sponsoring the Flying Lions aerobatic display team. The sponsorship will be for the next two years, after which Eqstra will review it. “We will cover the costs of the maintenance, fuel and other support necessary to keep the aircraft flying,” he says. The Flying Lions perform at airshows all around the country.
“We’ll use the planes to get more kids involved [in technical training], to become artisans, technicians and engineers,” explains Hill. “Regarding the technical high schools, the idea is to take the pupils to see the aircraft at local air shows and allow them to see them up close, touch them and talk to the pilots, technicians and engineers.”
Naturally, there is also a public relations aspect to the sponsorship. “It is also to get brand awareness to our customers and the public,” he states. “The people who attend air shows are in our target market groups.”
“The sponsor gets a huge punt out of what we do,” assures Flying Lions team leader Arnie Meneghelli. “With the Eqstra sponsorship, we’d like to bring the joy of flight to schools.” The team is equipped with five North American Harvard piston-engined training aircraft, most of them 70 years old, and all owned by Meneghelli. All displays are flown using four aircraft, ensuring there is always a spare, if needed.
“We have 11 to 12 pilots in total, that we use,” he reports. “We use some as ferry pilots to take the aircraft to the airshow venues. Most of our pilots are from SAA [South African Airways].” The display pilots are Meneghelli himself, Scully Levin (who leads the team in aerobatic displays), Ellis Levin and Stewart Lithgow.
“In a way, we’re a flying museum,” says Meneghelli. “All the aircraft are operated under an AOC [Air Operator Certificate] issued by the CAA [Civil Aviation Authority] and maintained according to certified requirements. These aircraft are safe. We do 100 hour inspections, or annual inspections – whatever comes first.”
The core activities of the Eqstra group are in the commercial, mining and construction sectors, including distribution, open pit contract mining, the rental of heavy equipment and plant and the long-term lease and rental of passenger and commercial vehicles and mobile capital equipment. The company serves customers in South Africa, elsewhere in Africa and in the UK and Ireland. “We benefit nearly everyone, every day,” affirms Hill. “Our commercial and vehicle leasing fleet that we own transports bread and milk, among many other things.”
The company is to invest R36-million in technical education over the next five years
Eqstra is to use an aerobatic team to attract young people to technical education and promote the company
Edited by: Martin Zhuwakinyu© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
Other Economy News
Updated 1 hour 49 minutes ago Trade and Industry Deputy Minister Mzwandile Masina says the department has so far registered 18 qualifying black industrialists in a range of sectors to grow the South African economy. “We will continue to accept applications from industrialists, as we have set a...
Updated 4 hours ago Ensuring that small, medium-sized and microenterprises (SMMEs) were included in the mainstream economy had to form part of the “radical economic transformation” targeted by the current administration, Small Business Development Minister Lindiwe Zulu said on Tuesday....
Updated 16 minutes ago Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown has released details of the remuneration of the chairpersons and nonexecutive directors of the various State-owned company boards falling under her Ministry. The remuneration figures, which are attached, are based on figures...
Updated 32 minutes ago Installed wind power capacity could swell by 530% to 2,000 gigawatts (GW) by 2030, supplying up to 19% of global electricity, a report from a trade association and Greenpeace said on Tuesday. It said installed wind energy capacity totalled 318 GW at the end of last...
Updated 39 minutes ago JSE-listed Grindrod’s rail division on Tuesday vowed to make rail operations more cost-effective in Africa, as Grindrod Locomotives unveiled its new, cost-effective fit-for-purpose shunting and short-haul locomotive. The new GS7, launched at Rovos Rail in Pretoria,...
Recent Research Reports
Defence 2014: A review of South Africa's defence industry (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Defence 2014 report examines South Africa’s defence industry, with particular focus on the key participants in the sector, the innovations that have come out of the sector, local and export demand, South Africa’s controversial multibillion-rand...
Road and Rail 2014: A review of South Africa's road and rail infrastructure (PDF report)
Creamer Media’s Road and Rail 2014 report examines South Africa’s road and rail transport system, with particular focus on the size and state of the country’s road and rail network, the funding and maintenance of these respective networks, and the push to move road...
Real Economy Year Book 2014 (PDF Report)
This edition drills down into the performance and outlook for a variety of sectors, including automotive, construction, electricity, transport, steel, water, coal, gold, iron-ore and platinum.
Real Economy Insight: Automotive 2014 (PDF Report)
This four-page brief covers key developments in the automotive industry over the past 12 months, including an overview of South Africa’s automotive market, trade figures, production and the policies influencing the sector.
Real Economy Insight: Construction 2014 (PDF Report)
This five-page brief covers key developments in the construction industry over the past 12 months. It provides an overview of the sector and includes details of employment in the sector, infrastructure and municipal spending, as well as insight into companies’...
Real Economy Insight: Electricity 2014 (PDF Report)
This five-page brief covers key developments in the electricity industry over the past 12 months, including details of State-owned power utility Eskom’s generation activities, funding and tariffs, independent power producers and prospects for the sector.
This Week's Magazine
The broad-based black economic-empowerment (BBBEE) alignment process in the con-struction sector has begun, dur-ing which the sector codes of the Construction Sector Charter Council (CSCC) will be aligned with the revised Codes of Good Practice (CoGP), which come...
It is second time lucky for Toby Venter. Ten years ago he negotiated to buy the Kyalami racetrack, but “the deal did not materialise”.
Environmental solutions company I-Cat started construction work on its R22-million, 1 949 m2 environmentally sustainable office and warehouse facility, commissioned by I-CAT Environmental Solutions, at a launch event in October. The new sustainable I-CAT campus,...
Effective file synchronisation and sharing across an organisation’s structures can provide the basis for robust mobile-device and document management while maintaining proper backup, version control and content distribution. These are the lessons learned by complex...
Hotel group Carlson Rezidor currently holds the largest hotel pipeline in Africa with 30 hotels and 6 300 rooms under development. The hotel group develops and operates Radisson Blu in the upper upscale segment and Park Inn by Radisson in the mid-market segment. With...