JOHANNESBURG (miningweekly.com) – French software company Dassault Systèmes Geovia is offering South Africa’s struggling mining industry the opportunity to innovate and accelerate its cash flow at the same time.
The company outlined its mix of innovation and cash-boosting potential at a presentation attended by Creamer Media’s Mining Weekly Online, where Dassault Systèmes’ Geovia CEO Raoul Jacquand sketched how the group’s impressive three-dimensional (3D) tools are being used to help a mining industry searching for productivity and cash-generating solutions. (Also watch attached Creamer Media video).
Directly after Jacquand displayed Geovia’s way of modelling, controlling and making strategic decisions across all of mining’s many moving parts, Geovia partner Gerald Whittle of Whittle Consulting flashed up real life-of-mine examples of cash-flow acceleration that had in 120 cases reduced risk, improved return on investment, attracted capital and supported debt.
But in the changing world of mining that former acme of economic success is having to be extended even further, which is why Dassault Systèmes Geovia with Whittle Consulting is also broadening what has been a proven cash-boosting formula to activities like community development, environmental preservation and the myriad of other obligations the mining industry currently faces.
In half of 120 cases, cash flow was doubled in the first three to five years – without the need to spend any capital; and net present value (NPV) improvement of 15% was the minimum achieved – in most cases, NPV was boosted by more than 100%,
“This is not just tuning up. This is transforming the economic performance of the mining business. It’s scary, it’s almost shocking that it’s possible. We’re doing this every day,” Whittle told an audience of mining technologists.
Dassault Systèmes Geovia sees major opportunity in helping to boost a mining industry faced with having to plan long but without knowing exactly what is in the ground nor what the prices will be next week, let alone in 25 years’ time.
Pointing out the myriad of agendas that abound in mining, the practitioners outlined to the mining technologists present how alignment of geologists trying to maximise reserves, mining engineers trying to minimise costs by maximising the use of their equipment, and metallurgists trying to maximise recovery, achieves results, while all the time safety is a prerequisite, skills need improving, social benefits are in demand, environment protection has to be upheld and sometimes employment has to be maximised.
Different agendas abound and although mines want to be in the lowest cost quartile, in reality they are stuck with a particular resource that nature has provided and a particular market that few can influence.
In the attached video interview with Creamer Media’s Mining Weekly Online, Geovia MD David Osborn said it was all about looking at a future plan that considers what is happening in other sectors and collaboratively optimising it.
“It’s a question of looking at the chain from the start to the end and getting the big picture together with technology,” Osborn said.
Being a global company with 10 000 partners around the world, Dassault Systèmes – which is renowned for its 3D visualisation – is working with many major companies in South Africa and the rest of Africa, where it is well-entrenched in aerospace and defence.
In mining, it is working with Gold Fields in South Africa and Exxaro in Africa.
Every piece of Dassault Systèmes technology is about a 3D experience of problems being visualised.
“The market is ripe for technology right now. Mining is looking for change, and we’re working with companies actively in using our technologies from other industries and bringing them into mining to drive lower costs, increase productivity, generate more cash flow and enhance sustainability,” he told Mining Weekly Online. (Also watch attached Creamer Media video).
Prerequisites are activity-based costing with good operational modelling in order to align geologists, engineers, metallurgists, human resource practitioners, accountants and commercial personnel to aim at one cash-spawning target.