SANRAL-Wirtgen MoU levels the playing field for smaller contractors

Memorandum of Understanding will afford small to medium construction contractors’ full access to the Wirtgen Group’s full suite of leading equipment brands, as well as financing, training and logistics.    

From left to right: Wirtgen sales manager Waylon Kukard, SANRAL Transformation Manager Ismail Essa, Wirtgen South Africa MD Henrich Schulenburg, SANRAL Engineering Executive Louw Kannemeyer, SANRAL Northern region Planning Design and Construction Manager Willem van der Merwe; SANRAL CFO Inge Mulder, SANRAL Head of Strategy Thabiso Malahleha, Wirtgen KZN branch manager Anwar Hoosen.

The South African National Roads Agency (SOC) Limited (SANRAL) and Wirtgen Group South Africa have signed a Memorandum of Understanding that will give small enterprises better access to the road construction machinery they need to execute major SANRAL-owned projects. 

The agreement will afford small to medium construction contractors’ full access to the Wirtgen Group’s full suite of leading equipment brands, as well as financing, training and logistics.    

“This is an important step in the broader national aim to transform the construction and engineering sectors and enable emerging black contractors, including enterprises owned by women and the youth, to participate more fully in major projects,” said Louw Kannemeyer, Engineering Executive at SANRAL. 

“Infrastructure development will be a major contributor to the efforts to attract investment to the country and was singled out at the recent Job Summit for its ability to create employment and stimulate economic activity. 

“We are delighted that a global leader in construction such as Wirtgen is stepping up to fill major gaps in the industry that constrain the growth of smaller contractors and impose barriers on their ability to tender for major work packages,” said Kannemeyer. 

Waylon Kukard, National Sales Manager at Wirtgen South Africa, said: “Equipment is one of the major success factors for contractors in the execution of their projects. If contractors are not well equipped, the country also faces the danger of sub-standard road infrastructure.  

“The agreement will afford upcoming contractors’ greater access to all Wirtgen Group equipment brands, namely Wirtgen, Vögele, Hamm, Kleemann, Benninghoven and Ciber.” 

Changing the landscape 

The agreement with Wirtgen is part of a process introduced by SANRAL to open the engineering and construction industries through its tender and enterprise development initiatives. It will greatly benefit smaller contractors who will now have access to the company’s range of equipment. 

Through its leading brands, Wirtgen offers a wide range of equipment, all the way from rollers, bitumen spreaders, sweepers, milling machines, recyclers, slipform pavers, modular asphalt pavers, to mobile asphalt plants and crushers and screens. 

Emerging contractors will be able to purchase or lease the sophisticated machinery required to meet the high standards that are in place within the South African road construction environment. 

This move will open new doors for Wirtgen to collaborate with small contractors by offering them access to finance, technical assistance, mentoring and logistical support. SANRAL and Wirtgen will also collaborate on issues such as training, supply chains and access to information about tendering processes. 

“We are confident that this MoU will increase the number of participants across the value chain of the road construction sector and contribute to fair competition,” said Kannemeyer.