Newly rebranded consultancy Zutari, formerly Aurecon Africa, has come first in the Top 225 International Design Firm Rankings for Africa, published by US magazine Engineering News-Record (ENR).
Zutari CEO Dr Gustav Rohde says this is probably the most credible ranking organisation globally for the consulting industry and the company typically uses it to reference and look at competitors, partners and other players in the market.
Rohde explains that this ranking is based on fee value, which is the value or revenue generated by the company itself.
“It is great to know we are now actually the number one company on the continent in terms of fee value.”
Rohde attributes the consultancy’s success in being among the best in Africa to the fact that it has had a presence on the continent for 88 years and, in that time, has formed many valuable partnerships.
“The latest ranking is also testament to the strategy we have put in place for Zutari to grow the business and focus on Africa. It gives our clients peace of mind in terms of experience, especially as Zutari represents the new journey we are undertaking as a company.
“We remain committed to Africa, while some others have reduced their activities on the continent,” he adds.
Aurecon Africa had been participating in the ENR Top 225 International Design Firm Rankings for the past 15 years.
The consultancy first made top ten in 2011. It is now the ninth year that the consultancy ranked in the top ten and the first year that it clinched the number one spot.
Rohde further stresses how important it is to form partnerships with global companies in order to be successful in Africa.
“Our ENR ranking shows that we are a serious player in this region. The other aspect is when we are on the lookout for local partners on projects throughout the continent. Our ranking is a reference of our credibility, size and capability. So this is an important tribute to us for both our clients and our partners.”
Rohde says it is also important to note that an African management-owned company has received this accolade, ahead of listed and large international players on the continent. It demonstrates the value that a local player brings to the table, as well as being able to compete against the best.
“The ENR rating also vindicates our experience and understanding of the challenges faced on the continent. It showcases our substantial expertise base to drive execution locally. That is, we do not have to look to the US or UK to supplement our capability, as do our competitors,” he remarks.
CASE IN POINT
As the Covid-19 pandemic continues to spread across the continent, Zutari is investing in nonprofit organisations that play a vital role in communities.
Zutari not only focuses on delivering impactful engineering services that make a difference in local communities, but is also involved in a range of corporate social investment projects in Africa, says corporate social investment manager Senzekile Mdluli.
For example, the consultancy is providing project management support and supply chain governance for the R100-million South African Pandemic Intervention and Relief Effort fund, which was established by FirstRand.
This fund is supporting South Africa’s Covid-19 critical care capacity.
Zutari has also been involved with food parcel distribution to needy residents in the Ekurhuleni metro, through a partnership with Tembisa Self-Help Association of the Disabled. Zutari has also donated to the Century City Feed-A-Family initiative that is spearheaded by the Rabie Property Group.
“We are honoured to be part of these initiatives, which demonstrate and encourage the spirit of ubuntu during these trying times. I have no doubt that this has also strengthened our relationships with our clients.
“Zutari’s CSI programme allows it to strengthen and nurture many of its long-standing client relationships by collaborating and making a difference to the communities in which we operate during these critical times. Zutari is, after all, about making a difference to and having an impact on the communities around us,” Rohde concludes.