Contract crushing and mining specialist African Mining and Crushing has in less than 10 years established itself as a true expert in the field and strives to consistently deliver the lowest sustainable cost per ton crushing solutions – across the African continent.

This can be attributed to the company’s dedicated employees, who place great emphasis on optimisation and efficiencies of the crushing circuits, thorough maintenance practices and procedures, never compromising on safety – all together equating to a service that goes a long way to ensuring the success of its clients, says CEO, Warwick Hughes.

Although the BEE-compliant African Mining and Crushing entered the market nine years ago crushing aggregate material for roads and mine infrastructure development, its ability to deliver on its promises has seen it excel in the mining sector where it today holds the majority of the market share in contract crushing for the Northern Cape’s manganese mines.

This article first appeared in Mining Review Africa Issue 7 2018

“Our ability to not only acquire these contracts but retain them year after year is a testimony to our ability to deliver on our commitments – and our clients’ faith in our ability to increase production when required, which has happened recently following the recent upswing in the commodity prices.”

This delivery becomes even more effective when done in conjunction with African Mining and Crushing-owned, African Drill & Blast – headed up by CEO Gerard Schenk, which has optimised drill and blasting performance procedures which in turn boosts crushing performance.

Prioritising maintenance of its equipment fleet is a major contributing factor to Mining and Crushing’s fast-track success.

“Solid production results are a natural result of this. Purchasing quality equipment also guarantees long life cycles and when combined with African Mining and Crushing modifications, improves efficiencies and can also withstand the arduous conditions in Africa.”

To complement this focus, African Mining and Crushing also carries a significant spare parts inventory – on site and at head office, to ensure quick turnaround times during maintenance routines.

And thanks to highly experienced and well-trained employees who have extensive in-depth knowledge of the equipment they operate – maintenance and unscheduled downtime pose no lengthy delays as they are equipped to repair any African Mining and Crushing machine.

Such in-house expertise should not be under-valued.

All directors offer a hands-on approach when assessing a project to determine its crushing requirements and will take the time to visit the site and evaluate the ore body – taking into consideration fraction size, how the ore naturally crushes, its abrasive characteristics, etc.

Only then can the African Mining and Crushing team fully assess an operation’s crushing requirements and specify the right machinery for the application.

Track record and capabilities

“We may be based in South Africa, but we can handle any crushing contract, of any size, anywhere in the world. Our solutions encompass mobile (for those who want to start generating cash flow and returns as soon as possible), modular and static crushing plant and we can cater from small start-ups to large-scale, high volume production requirements.”

African Mining and Crushing’s working footprint spans from South Africa to Zambia and Sierra Leone but through its board of directors’ experience extends even further into Botswana, Namibia, Mozambique, Zimbabwe and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

“We understand Africa and we are comfortable operating on the continent,” Hughes highlights.

The company’s experience in numerous commodities is equally impressive and ranges from manganese and iron ore to gold, copper/cobalt, coal and even kimberlite.

It has also positioned itself to take advantage of the emerging graphite and hard rock lithium sectors and can cater to their crushing needs.

Mining and Crushing averages 800 000 tpm which Huges elaborates on, “Our output is to some extent determined by the nature of the ore and our clients’ product specifications.”

Moving forward, its monthly output will increase even further when its newly acquired Metso LT140 jaw crusher arrives at the head office and is deployed.

This machine adds another 350 000 tpm to African Mining and Crushing’s total crushing capabilities, which will then be in excess of 1.5 Mtpm.

Besides operating its own extensive fleet of crushing equipment, African Mining and Crushing has also on numerous occasions been asked to assist clients by taking over the operation of their crushing facilities.

“As a result of African Mining and Crushing’s ability to maximise outputs of crushing circuits, we have always been able to produce at a lower cost per ton than what our clients could do for themselves, whilst actually improving the condition of their assets as a result of our maintenance prioritisation.”

“We have the equipment and the people to deliver any crushing requirement and we will always look to offer local employment opportunities where we can train and empower under the supervision of our experienced staff,” Hughes states.

With a range of clients that span from small to large-scale, African Mining and Crushing has developed a sound understanding of the nuances required to run a successful mining operation or assist its client in doing so.

It has developed a comprehensive safety manual with procedures that comply to South African and African legislation.

“We are open, believe in honest and transparent communication and are willing to help our clients solve any challenge, that often extends beyond contractual obligations. We aim for win-win scenarios and this is how best to achieve that. We understand that for our company to be successful – our clients need to be successful. If clients partner with us during their early stage development, I am also happy to guarantee the best production and cost per ton within their crushing circuits,” Hughes highlights.

A strong future outlook

A debt-free ownership structure gives African Mining and Crushing the freedom to move and optimally utilise assets without financial burden. The company also places a lot of emphasis on reinvesting into the business.

Aside from considering the merits of local manufacture as opposed to importing equipment, part of its future growth is expected to emerge from a new company that Hughes has helped establish, Evolve Mining, which is 85% African Mining and Crushing-owned.

Evolve Mining will look at innovative ways to alter traditional mining methodologies to improve on efficiencies and further reduce costs. Innovative conveyor systems and optimising in pit crushing are current focus points.

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