Exxaro’s Leeuwpan Coal Mine hands over certificates to ESD candidates

Through its vision of powering better lives in Africa and beyond, Exxaro aspires to be more than just a mining company. By implementing leading practices in enterprise supplier and development (ESD) across all their core operations, it has invested in the success of other smaller businesses inside and outside the mining value chain. Exxaro believes that the success of their business relies on the success of society. That is why these ESD initiatives intend to promote economic transformation through developing the skills of entrepreneurs and suppliers and integrating them into competitive markets to generate more jobs and sustainable communities.  

On 4 March 2021, Exxaro’s Leeuwpan Coal Mine, in partnership with Excellence Business Consulting, handed over certificates to 11 candidates who had completed a two-year Enterprise Development Programme in Delmas. The mine provided these small, medium, and micro enterprises (SMMEs) with business incubation through Enterprise Development, Business Mentorship, and Business Skills Training programmes that focused on essential skills and knowledge in finance, cashflow-management, marketing and ethics. This programme enabled access to meaningful opportunities for these entrepreneurs in businesses such as construction, mine rehabilitation, cleaning, pest control, supply and delivery, air-conditioning and maintenance of mine vehicles.  

Most of the SMMEs are progressing well and are at various stages in their development, showing great potential for growth. The small businesses included in the programme offer a wide range of products and services, such as farming, mine rehabilitation, glass and steelworks, pest control, catering, air-conditioning and other engineering services, as well as landscaping services. This programme forms part of Exxaro’s ESD initiative to create shared value for a wider range of stakeholders and grow the broader economy, and some of the successful SMMEs have already been given the opportunity to provide services to Leeuwpan mine.  

Mangaliso Sethethi, Business Unit Manager at Leeuwpan, explains that the programme has been successful because the mine focused on empowering black-owned SMMEs and enabling them to improve their provision of services to Leeuwpan or extend their services to other businesses. “In that way, the mine improves its procurement levels from these enterprises. This goes beyond the realms of just basic services but also providing SMMEs with loans and grants to offer contract mining and other services to the company,” concluded Mangaliso. 

Exxaro’s Enterprise Development Programme has done more than just offer financial support. By enabling SMMEs to subcontract for well-established businesses, they have gained access to opportunities that would otherwise have seemed unreachable, and they have gained invaluable experience from those opportunities. Large corporates, in turn, can transform their supply chains by engaging with smaller suppliers. By developing the necessary skills and expertise these SMMEs need to provide goods and services effectively, Exxaro has helped local businesses thrive, which in turn creates a rich ecosystem from which our business and our communities are sure to reap the long-term benefits. This demonstrates Exxaro’s commitment to improving community members’ lives through building and improving infrastructure, providing jobs and opportunities, supporting local municipalities, and up-skilling community members.