Gemcom reports 50% growth since 2008, seeking acquisitions

8th April 2011

By: Liezel Hill


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Mining software provider Gemcom has grown by 50% since the company went private in July 2008, and continues to see opportunities to increase its offering and share of the market, says CEO Rick Moignard.

The firm recently opened three new Asian offices, in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia; Kolkata, India; and Jakarta, Indonesia; and has an Almaty, Kazakhstan, office opening soon.

It has also added a new product to its offering, the Gemcom Hub, a data management solution that was launched at this year’s Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada convention, in Toronto.

Moignard says that Gemcom is placing increased focus on the services it offers customers that use its products.

In the past, it was mainly a matter of training people at the mining companies to use the software.

“What we’ve found is that, as mining companies have fewer people, they have a high turnover and they have skills issues, so we want to make sure we have people on the ground to work with those customers.”

Gemcom has hired more geologists, mining engineers and other mining professionals.

“We’re not trying to compete with the SRKs or the Amecs of the world – it’s very much around our product and helping our customers.”

The company has put a lot of time into studying the market and finding out what products and functions customers would like to have available, and has been able to focus better on the longer term since becoming a private entity again in 2008, Moignard comments.

Gemcom was originally spun out of mining consulting firm SRK Consulting, and went public with a listing on the TSX in 1997.

However, Moignard was finding it difficult to focus on what he believed should be a long-term strategy while also worrying about the quarter-to-quarter view taken by analysts.

“To get the company along the right path, I needed a group of investors who understood what we were going to do from a strategy point of view and how long it was going to take for customers to adopt what we were going to do and buy into that longer-term view rather than a public market, quarter-to-quarter situation,” he says.

“Going private has given us a much better opportunity to really work with customers and understand what their needs are.”

The company has spent about $75-million on research and development and on acquisitions over the last few years, and continues to look at potential deals, he says.

Gemcom identifies a technology or product that it knows customers want, and then either develops the capabilities itself, buys another company that already offers the product or forms a partnership so that it can offer another firm’s technology to its own clients.

“We’re very, very focused on what technologies we want and what we want to be offering,” Moignard says.

“It really comes down to a ‘build, buy or partner’ strategy.”

Edited by Martin Zhuwakinyu
Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor



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