Crane company Sarens Siba has opened a new mining-specific crane depot in Brits to service the needs of mines in the greater Rustenburg region.
The depot will house mobile and all-terrain cranes in the 40 t to 120 t range that are in high demand by regional mines, and will mainly be used in the maintenance of plant.
Sarens, in future, based on demand, may also house rough terrain cranes at the depot, should there be demand for these cranes.
Sarens Siba Southern Africa regional director Andrew Lees says the company used the forced downtime during Alert Level 5 of the national Covid-19 lockdown to take a “deep dive” into the structure of the business and identify areas for improvement.
These meetings resulted in Sarens Siba identifying a gap in the mining market into which it could expand and create a mining-specific offering on the doorstep of northern-based mines.
“Working from a central location in Brakpan was not necessarily the best way to achieve the best use of our fleet or service our mining clients.”
As such, plans were drawn up and presented to Sarens’ head office in Belgium during the hard lockdown, which were swiftly approved.
“As such, from July 1 we instigated the new makeup of Sarens Siba in South Africa,” Lees says.
He adds that a new sales person was hired, who started bringing in new mining leads, further driving the decision to expand Sarens’ presence north of Pretoria.
In addition, Sarens group rental sales support manager Tim Biesemans notes that the company used its experience of servicing other sectors, such as the power, civil construction and chemicals and petrochemicals sectors to bring its expertise more greatly into the mining industry.
Mining maintenance jobs will be primarily catered for from the Brits depot, while larger project jobs will leverage off the company’s heavies depot in Brakpan, which houses larger cranes of up to 800 t in terms of crawler cranes.
Sarens heavies and mining depot manager Hennie Groenewald meanwhile says the company will also be able to offer self-propelled modular transporters, jacking and skidding equipment, rigging, as well as transport options.
Besides the new Brits depot and the heavies Brakpan depot, Sarens also has depots in Sasolburg and Secunda.