From its solid foundation as the pioneer of and leader in Proximity Detection System (PDS) in South Africa, Booyco Electronics is making rapid headway in growing its global footprint.
Having recently made export development a strategic imperative, the company is seeing enthusiastic uptake of its home-grown technologies, according to Booyco Electronics CEO Anton Lourens.
“These are exciting times, where we are already doing business in Southern Africa, West Africa, South America and Australia, while seeing considerable interest from countries in Europe and North America,” says Lourens.
“Expanding our footprint has been made possible by building strong relationships with experienced channel partners who serve and know these mining regions.”
Booyco Electronics’ journey into international markets began many years ago through its involvement with the Earth Moving Equipment Safety Round Table (EMESRT), Lourens notes. This global initiative of major mining companies guides best practice in minimising vehicle interactions and collisions.
With South Africa leading the world in regulating this space, Booyco Electronics was, and still is, able to contribute valuable insights to this global forum – based on its market leading PDS technology and experience in the field.
“When we began designing our latest Booyco CXS generation of collision avoidance technology, we developed a solution that would lend itself to application in international markets,” he says. “We then identified and engaged reputable partners who understand their customer base and are technically capable of supporting our innovative product line.”
The first Booyco PDS system exported from the South African facility was installed in Madagascar about five years ago. This has been followed by further international installations in Ghana, Namibia and Chile.
“With our focus on developing safety equipment that ensures every employee returns home safely every day, we collaborate with responsible, diligent partners who apply their technical resources to realising that vision on individual mine sites,” he says.
Key relationships have been established with Australian smart technology company RCT, with Ramjack Technology Solutions and with Insucam. RCT has operations in 70 countries, Ramjack Technology Solutions provides system integration services globally and Insucam has a strong South American footprint.
“While our channel partners support the technology and the end-customer, there is also significant value-add in our collaboration as our partners are already experts in automation, remote control and interfacing,” says Lourens. “Their experience in on-mine implementation opens doors to integrating our various technologies to the customers’ benefit. We can even incorporate their technologies into our solutions.”
Positioning Booyco Electronics well for its global growth is its familiarity with most mining environments, based on over 15 years in the field. Its technology has also been developed to address the various scenarios specified by EMERST in its protocols and guidelines. This has meant the company’s PDS solutions have solid global applicability from a technology deployment perspective.
“We have now been able to enhance this offering by adapting our machine displays and text to different languages to suit new markets, including our manuals and training materials for technicians,” he says.
“We also provide training – online as well as in person, where possible – to our channel partners. To do this, we leverage the power of video while also experimenting with innovations like body cameras for the more technical aspects of learning and on-site fault finding.”
Lourens highlights that mining professionals in many countries are still relatively new to PDS, as regulations have not required the implementation of this technology previously. This has led to Booyco Electronics focusing extensively on information and training tools that familiarise the international mining sector with the value of this technology.
It is clear, he says, that PDS technology has much to offer mines globally, especially as mining operations seek digital integration that will continuously improve safety and productivity.