Armscor seeking private sector accommodation involvement at two of its sites


Part of Armscor’s recently announced multi-million Rand turnaround strategy involves “sweating” assets to make them income generators for a government agency largely reliant on what looks set to be a continually shrinking defence budget.

This will see assets including the Alkantpan test range in Northern Cape and the multi-disciplinary Gerotek, west of Pretoria, developed further to boost their respective revenue earning capabilities.

Armscor is not wasting time on these developments and has issued a Request for Information (RfI) for an expression of interest in either or both the sites.
“Armscor intends leasing land at Gerotek and/or Alkantpan for the establishment of accommodation. The Expression of Interest (EOI) must include all capital project finance and property development details that will enable Armscor to ascertain aspects such as revenue potential,” a notice on the Armscor Tender bulletin with a closing date of 25 August states.

The announcement is in line with what Armscor Senior Manager: Operational Transformation Tsholo Moleko said about the revenue generating potential identified in the turnaround strategy, which cost R56.1 million .
“The turnaround project identified R70.1 million in potential revenue generating opportunities,” she told defenceWeb.

According to Armscor, the Alkantpan Test Range in the central semi-desert part of South Africa is a strategic ISO 9001 all-purpose ballistic test range for medium to large calibre weapons and ammunition. Related tests such as insensitive munitions, hazard classification, ageing and surveillance trials are all catered for.

Alkantpan provides a client focused ordnance test and evaluation service with the objective of adding value by way of a professional cost-effective service. “To achieve this, Alkantpan develops long-term relationships with its customers, protects their intellectual property and strives to exceed the required quality standards and expectations,” Armscor said.

Alkantpan is orientated east–west with the five firing sites and administrative buildings situated on the range’s eastern side. The test range is primarily designed for medium and large calibre guns, rockets and short range ground to ground missiles.
“A variety of tests has and can be done at Alkantpan. Sparse vegetation, low rainfall and firing distances up to 55 000m, make it an ideal range for any type of conventional ammunition. In special cases and if ammunition without explosives is tested, firing distances of up to 70 000m can be obtained.
“Alkantpan’s five firing sites can be used simultaneously. The firing sites are designed to protect personnel and equipment against any catastrophic failure of weapon or ammunition.”

Instrumentation at the range includes tracking radar, stress and strain, muzzle velocity, vibration and acceleration, chamber pressure, fuse frequencies, blast over-pressure and burst height sensors.

Gerotek provides an accredited, independent test and evaluation service, product promotions, corporate events and advanced driver training and development programmes to security forces, defence and other industries locally and internationally.

Both sites currently have limited accommodation, conference and meeting facilities and Armscor is aiming to expand the numbers that can be accommodated. This is in line with attracting more events and functions, similar to the Rheinmetall Denel Munition Defence Day.