JOHANNESBURG, 26 May 2017 – Almost 100 guests representing small and large companies in the metals and engineering sector attended the 3rd annual SEIFSA Awards for Excellence ceremony in Sandton last night, during which companies which had excelled in 2016 were honoured.

Hosted in partnership with the Industrial Development Corporation, the gala function was held on its own for the first time, and not as part of the annual Southern African Metals and Engineering Indaba.

South African Nuclear Energy Corporation Chairman Dr Kelvin Kemm was the guest speaker.

Family-owned Hazelton Pumps won the Most Innovative Award and the Best Customer Service of the Year Award – as it did in 2015.

Vesco Plastics, which employs fewer than 50 people, won the Artisan of the Year Award; ABB South Africa won the Corporate Social Responsibility of the Year Award; and SGB Cape won the Health and Safety Award of the Year.

Weir Minerals, which has embraced the challenges of the amended BB-BEE Code and for whose agenda skills development has become the cornerstone, won the Most Transformed Company of the Year Award.

For the third year in a row, there were no entries for the Environmental Stewardship of the Year category.

The SEIFSA Awards for Excellence were launched in 2015. They invite manufacturers operating in the metals and engineering sector within the Southern African region to submit their nominations in any of the seven categories for projects which were completed in the previous calendar year.

Born out of the need to encourage growth and celebrate excellence in the metals and engineering sector, the SEIFSA Awards for Excellence offer a great opportunity for companies operating in this vital sector to receive well-deserved recognition by industry peers for their capabilities, expertise and innovation.

“In such turbulent economic times and a challenging business environment, we at SEIFSA believe that it is critically important for those companies which excel at what they do to get the acknowledgement and recognition that they deserve,” said SEIFSA CEO Kaizer Nyatsumba.

He said that environmental stewardship was of growing importance for all businesses, and expressed the hope that there would also be entrants in this category of the awards next year.

Mr Nyatsumba said the judges – made up of external experts – were impressed with the high quality of entries for the SEIFSA Awards for Excellence 2017. This, he said, vindicated SEIFSA’s belief that, even during these difficult economic times, some companies in the metals and engineering sector have continued to strive for greater competitiveness both domestically and internationally.

Among the panel of judges this year were Dr Thuthula Balfour-Kaipa of  the Chamber of Mines of South Africa, Mr Chule Qalase of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, Professor Hoosen Rasool of FR Research, Ms Beverly-Ann Jack of Adcorp Holdings Ltd, Mr  Werner Guse of Gijima and Ms Adrienne Bird of the Department of Higher Education.

Mr Nyatsumba also presented the coveted CEO’s Awards to former SEIFSA Board member Neil Penson for outstanding service to the Federation and the industry,  Mr Tsakane Themba for having been the best student at the SEIFSA Training Centre in 2016, HC Heat Exchangers for being Company of the Year and the Electrical Engineering and Allied Industries Association for being an Association of the Year.

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