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Doing good while doing business

Ghana Minister of PPP and South African High Commissioner to Ghana with Bigen Africa and Jescan Construction Senior management at the opening of Bigen Africa’s regional West Africa office.

Fast-growing infrastructure-development company Bigen Africa regards Ghana as the ideal location from which to manage infrastructure-development projects in West Africa. The company’s Accra office was officially opened in April 2015.

“Ghana has in impressive structured development approach. It is a small country, but it has the potential to be one of the fastest-growing economies on the continent, boosted by its resources and agricultural industries, private-sector investments, public infrastructure development and sustained political stability,” said Bigen Africa Accra office manager, Dane Poggenpoel, at the launch of the new office in Accra last month (April 2015).

Bigen Africa was born on African soil four decades ago and has since evolved into a provider of sustainable infrastructure solutions, designed to benefit all stakeholders in a project.

“We regard ourselves as a thought-leading infrastructure development consultancy with core capabilities in engineering, management consulting and development finance,” said CEO Dr Snowy Khoza at the opening ceremony, attended by a host of esteemed guests, including the Ghanaian minister of public, private partnership, the honourable Rashid Pelpuo and the South African high commissioner to Ghana, HE Ms L Xingwana.

Ms Xingwana congratulated the company on its attempts to grow the provision of housing on the African continent. Endeavours such as these form a key component of successful South African- Ghanaian interaction.

Bigen Africa aims to bring solutions to Ghana’s current housing deficit through its Breezy Hills arm which is currently focusing on the residential needs of the region.

Dr Khoza recommitted the Bigen Africa aim to be held accountable for the development impacts that arise out its infrastructure projects. “Land development is not only about building houses, it deals with each and every aspect of sustainable infrastructure that will affect the lives of the people occupying the land,” she said.

Bigen Africa has a history of ensuring that some of the employment and procurement opportunities arising out of each project are channelled toward the respective communities. This has time and again ensured that the company creed of “doing good while doing business” is put into practice.

“Bigen Africa regards itself as the ideal strategic partner for African countries in their endeavours to meet their infrastructure needs,” said Bigen Africa executive director for West African operations, CJ Venter.

“We integrate the entire value chain in an infrastructure development project by either using in-house capabilities or through strategic partnerships. In Ghana, we have a partnership agreement with Associated Consultants, the largest local consulting practice in Ghana.”

The company has already achieved success in delivering cost-effective, sustainable infrastructure projects in Namibia, Zambia, Malawi, Angola, Nigeria, Kenya, Congo and Swaziland.

“With this new base in Accra, the company wishes to provide appropriate solutions in land development, energy provision, water supply and sanitation, structures, roads and industrial development.”

Projects under Bigen Africa’s management are based on mutually beneficial agreements which stipulate how a development should be structured, funded, implemented, maintained and operated to ensure sustainability.

When authorities are approached to co-partner projects to benefit communities, the company facilitates the most viable planning environment to raise funds through its affiliation with more than twenty development finance institutions.

Dr Khoza summarised the Bigen Africa approach through its value proposition to customers, governments and communities – namely to provide infrastructure development solutions through a holistic approach which encompasses in-house capabilities, strategic partnerships and off-taker needs to optimise project validity and add innovative and sustainable value to the full spectrum of services we provide.

In all instances, partnering are subject to the stringent Bigen Africa indigenisation requirements, including an understanding of the policy and regulatory frameworks of a region, a sincere interest in the economic and social growth of a country and a policy of sourcing resources locally where possible.