Epiroc South Africa opens new service centre in Kathu, Northern Cape

From left: Epiroc executives – Luis Araneda, Sami Niiranen, Gregory Karsten and Paul Bergstrom.
From left: Epiroc executives – Luis Araneda, Sami Niiranen, Gregory Karsten and Paul Bergstrom.

With the establishment of its Northern Cape Service Centre in Kathu, Epiroc is able to deliver professional original equipment manufacturer service, maintenance and remanufacturing solutions to the doorsteps of a large portion of its regional customers.

The organisation is also importantly developing and investing in businesses within the local community to the ultimate benefit of the region, by primarily partnering with service providers based in the Northern Cape.

The primary market segments that Epiroc serves within the Northern Cape Province include underground and surface mining as well as exploration customers who run their operations on manganese, iron ore, diamond and zinc mines.

The organisation’s large installed product base in the region comprises surface drilling equipment including D65 FlexiRoc, D65 SmartRoc, DM30, as well as PV-351D and PV-271D, with most customers making use of Autonomous Drilling capabilities on the PV-351D and PV-271D units.

Exploration drilling equipment includes the Boyles C6. Epiroc also has a massive underground presence – from trucks (MT42 and MT436) and loaders (ST14 and ST1030) to face drills (Boomer S2, 282 and S7D) and Roof Bolters (Boltec 235, Boltec S and Boltec SL).

“The Northern Cape Parts & Service business takes up a substantial portion of our South Africa market and our services reach the entire region,” states Wayne Sterley, Epiroc Regional GM, Southern Africa. “The Northern Cape is also an upcoming hotspot for our Digital and Technology division and is already considered a hub for our battery electric vehicles. The need for us to open a workshop in the region was thus apparent by moving closer to our valued customers we are able to add so much more value, contributing to the sustainability of their operations.”

With a total floor area of 2 722,4 m² (phase 1), Epiroc’s Northern Cape Service Centre is designed so that components can be serviced from start to completion under roof. The facility is equipped to repair the following Epiroc machines, equipment and components including but not limited to rock drills, hydraulic rotation units, pump drives, rotary screw compressors, transmissions, axles, and BEV batteries and chargers.

Service, maintenance and remanufacturing on all of the above is also available at the workshop. The facility also boasts an Epiroc Global Test Bench with the capability to test and generate reports on all relevant components. The service centre houses a spray booth, a parts storing and hose manufacturing facility as well as a dedicated battery equipment service area.

“The fact that the service centre now enables us to repair components that used to be done at the Epiroc Component Workshop located at our Johannesburg Head Office enables us to deliver significant time and cost-saving benefits to our customers across the Northern Cape,” says Sterley.

“Increased turnaround times of refurbished components will boost their machine availability, plant uptime and productivity, helping to increase production. Moreover, customers now have the opportunity to visit our premises to witness the disassembly of their components and to address any queries face-to-face.”

Sterley also points out that the new facility will add value for customers outside the Northern Cape too as it is now possible to send component repair overflow from the Johannesburg Component Workshop should the need arise.

The initial Northern Cape service centre staff complement will be 15, with four individuals employed by Epiroc and eleven being part of a local upliftment initiatives company. “As an OEM, we are doing something very unique in the market; we are entering into a joint venture with a local company,” says Sterley. In addition to business management and operational skills, all Service Centre employees will receive technical training on best-practice servicing, maintenance and refurbishing of Epiroc machines, equipment and components.

Sterley concludes: “Epiroc’s investment in the service centre is a clear commitment to the Southern Africa market, this paired with acquisitions like AARD Mining and Mernok, illustrate our commitment to extend and build on our local content offering.”

The Epiroc Northern Cape Service Centre is fully operational from July 5, 2023.

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