SKA SA and NMC Civils have partnered with Absa in an enterprise and supply chain initiative to develop and support small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in the Northern Cape through the SKA programme.
Through this exciting programme, Absa will fund qualifying SMEs who have been sub-contracted to provide goods and services to NMC Civils – the main contractor for the construction of a 80km stretch of the provincial road between Carnarvon in the Northern Cape and the SKA SA Losberg construction site. NMC Civils is a member of the NMC Construction Group, a multi-disciplinary construction group.
SKA SA has invested in the local contractors through various initiatives. The SKA SA, NMC Civils and Absa partnership follows training by SKA SA and NMC Civils during which local contractors from Carnarvon, Williston, Vosburg, Brandvlei and Van Wyksvlei were taught business and technical skills in order to participate on various subcontract work packages in the provincial road construction project.
By partnering with Absa, SKA SA and NMC Civils are helping in creating market linkage and access to funding opportunities for the local contractors in the Northern Cape. The total value of the SKA SA-Absa partnership is approximately R34,5 million which will be allocated to the SMEs subcontracted by NMC Civils, a portion of which has been managed by NMC prior to this partnership. The project is envisaged to conclude by the first quarter of 2017.
“The investment in the Karoo and in local business in Carnarvon and surrounds is of paramount importance to SKA SA. We have rigorous community development programmes in place that focuses on five areas and this partnership speaks directly to the focus areas of community upliftment and supporting the development of SME’s in the communities,” says Dr Rob Adam, Project Director of SKA SA.
KeaObaka Mahuma, Head of Enterprise and Supply Chain Development at Absa, says the collaboration with SKA SA and NMC Civils is in line with the bank’s strategic approach to support the sustainable development and growth of SMEs through providing funding and facilitating links into the supply chains of established corporates operating in local communities.
“As a bank, we recognise the importance of SMEs as an engine of economic growth and we are committed to partnering with our corporate clients to develop sustainable SMEs in local communities in which our clients operate.”
“By collaborating with SKA SA, Absa will be able to provide SKA SA’s SME suppliers with access to development finance. These are SMEs that would not ordinarily qualify for lending through traditional channels. All funding advanced under the Supply Chain Development programme will be linked to a business development support package to improve the business owners’ business and financial management skills, as well as to provide them with networking opportunities and access to markets,” says Mahuma.
“The NMC Construction Group is proud to have its civils division, NMC Civils be a part of this exciting initiative. Its aim as a role player in this initiative is to create a conducive environment for the partnership to succeed and allow the local contractors to flourish. NMC Civils’ support of this programme forms part of the group’s ongoing commitment to enterprise and supplier development,” says Bonke Simelane, Director: Group Corporate Services at NMC Civils.