The Bigen Group is a leading African infrastructure development company providing innovative and sustainable infrastructure and engineering solutions to shape a better future for Africa. The group provides a broad spectrum of socio-economic, financial, technical, environmental and institutional services and is a powerful change maker in the mining, agricultural, water and sanitation, real estate, transportation, energy, health and development advisory sectors.
Since its inception 51 years ago, the group has been responsible for a legacy of world class projects in more than 19 countries in Africa, delivered with development impact as the common denominator. In the mining industry, the group has earned a solid reputation for not only providing a comprehensive range of professional services and enabling infrastructure across the mining spectrum, but also for its passion to making a lasting difference to the impacted communities. The group provides mining clients with enabling infrastructure solutions, based on, amongst others, its intimate understanding of the requirements of governments, local authorities, communities and other stakeholders.
“Globally pressure is mounting for mining companies to go beyond their governing duties and to take more responsibility for their impact on communities’” says Luthando Vutula, Chief Executive Officer of Bigen. “Our diversified service offering assist mining companies to remain profitable enterprises, while also contributing positively to socio-economic development in the communities in which they operate.”
Apart from providing a convenient one-stop shop experience in providing enabling infrastructure such as potable water supply systems, wastewater facilities, refuse disposal solutions, buildings, housing, energy provision as well as roads and rail required by mines to operate effectively, Bigen offers development advisory and impact services as an extra value ad.
“Our approach of consciously integrating socio-economic development impact as a key component in all our projects, invariable leads to joint value being created for both our mining clients and their respective local communities,” says Vutula. “When a water reservoir is built for a mine, the surrounding community should be able to benefit from now having access to potable water and the mine from processing the resultant grey water. Further value is added when the local communities are empowered through economic inclusion, skills development, employment and procurement opportunities on the project.”
This approach has achieved proven results, not only in the mining industry, but throughout all the major sectors in which Bigen operates across Africa. Bigen’s development advisory and impact experts will typically advise at the initial infrastructure development planning stage of a project, on deriving maximum impact from the project to ultimately also benefit the surrounding communities. In Botswana, Bigen’s role as the Government’s representative in the 360-km North-South-Carrier water transfer system – the country’s largest engineering project ever undertaken – not only helped to avert a major water crisis in Gaborone, but also created a welcome economic revival amidst surrounding communities through the creation of thousands of job opportunities, training prospects and gaining access to potable water. In addition, Bigen’s involvement in the Namibian Kranzberg to Walvis Bay railway improvement project will create 11 540 direct and indirect jobs and a projected N$687 375 in community-retained earnings. A host of infrastructure development projects across Africa, bears silent testimony to the success of Bigen’s undertaking to consistently benefit communities, clients and stakeholders and improve the livelihoods and well-being of the people of Africa.
Bigen’s management philosophy is similarly proactive in engaging governments in Africa to formulate policies that acknowledge the natural synergy between commercial development and social upliftment as a solution to improving livelihoods. Such policies ensure that government-contracted developers, rather than merely amassing wealth from their activities on African soil, also create sustainable benefits beyond pure capital gains for the communities where they work.
Whether in the mining, health, real estate, transportation or water industries of Africa, Bigen considers itself a champion of the socio-economic infrastructure developmental agenda. Recognising that sustainable development in Africa can only be achieved through localised and inclusive approaches, the Group has aligned its business efforts to address inequality, unemployment, and poverty.
Focus impact areas include:
- Economic development: We seek to improve the economic well-being and quality of life for a community by creating and/or retaining jobs and supporting or growing incomes and the tax base.
- Social Development: Our programmes aim to improve the well-being of every individual in society, so that they can reach their full potential.
- Sustainable Infrastructure: We aim to deliver infrastructure that is designed and implemented in a way that is relevant to context, fit for purpose, serves the community and is maintainable within the community given their current and future resources (skills, equipment, access to finance, etc.)
The Bigen Development Advisory and Impact service offering includes:
- Development advisory on all infrastructure projects
- Local Economic Development Strategy Design & Implementation
- Project and Programme management
- Enterprise and Supplier Development Strategy Design & Implementation
- Skills Development Training and Capacity Building
- Monitoring, Reporting and Evaluation
- Social Facilitation & Stakeholder Engagement
- Corporate Social Responsibility Advisory and Fund Management
- Impact Investing fund design and impact evaluations
- SDG reporting
- Technology platforms for Development Impact
- Policy and advocacy
“As staunch supporters of the Africa developmental agenda, we are committed to shaping a better future for Africa’s people. With a professional and experienced workforce, an intimate knowledge of the needs of Africa, diversified business lines and a continued focus on development impact, we look forward to continue working with our private and public sector clients to transform the economies of African nations and the prosperity of its people.”
For more information visit www.bigengroup.com .