JOHANNESBURG (miningweekly.com) – The globally acquisitive Geneva-based inspection, verification, testing and certification company SGS, which employs 75 000 people in 1 500 offices and laboratories worldwide, has entered into final negotiations to acquire South Africa’s Time Mining, which employs 370 people and generated revenue of more than R300-million in 2012.
The Swiss-listed SGS posted 15.1% revenue growth to 2.7-billion Swiss francs (R27-billion) in the first six months of 2012.
“SGS has a big drive up the value chain and has acquired similar businesses in South America and North America,” Time Mining CEO Peet Visagie told Mining Weekly Online of the proposed transaction, which is subject to the approval of the South African Competition Commission.
All Time Mining jobs would be preserved, Visagie said, adding that growth could arise from Time Mining being able to extend its offering into prefeasibility and feasibility study services by exploiting SGS’s large North American process engineering resource.
SGS CEO Chris Kirk said the acquisition strengthened the expertise of SGS’s Minerals Services team, expanded its footprint in Africa and delivered on the company's plans to offer clients a comprehensive technical service.
“For Time Mining, it is obviously a huge benefit in the sense that the SGS group worldwide has a vast footprint,” Visagie said.
The 26-year-old, privately owned Johannesburg-based company has been active in 33 African countries and SGS has a business entity in every African country, bar four.
SGS’s strength in African French-speaking and West African countries in particular is seen as a source of potential growth for Time Mining.
The South African company specialises in providing process plant design, project management and commissioning and optimisation services for minerals processing plants that are owned and operated by large, intermediate and junior mining companies.
Its overlap with SGS is in the laboratory field, where it provides analytical services and has commercial and on-site laboratories through its Performance Laboratories entity.
Time Mining & Processing, Time Mining Ghana and Dump & Dune Drillers are among its other business entities.