Denel Maritime and Denel S3 signify dynamic change


Denel Integrated Systems and Maritime (Denel ISM) has split into two business units – Denel Maritime and Denel Sovereign Security Solutions (Denel S3), according to the latest newsletter of the state-owned defence and technology conglomerate.

When Denel ISM was established in December 2014, it enabled the group to diversify into the maritime, sovereign and non-defence security domains. “We need increased focus in these areas to realise our business objectives,” acting chief executive at the time Zwelakhe Ntshepe (who this week was named Denel Group chief executive by Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown), said. “This is a step in the right direction and signifies promising growth in new capabilities”.

Denel Maritime, located in the home town of the SA Navy and naval dockyard in Simon’s town, is headed by Ismail Dockrat. It primary focus will be the management, operation and commercialisation of the dockyard and it is well positioned to enable Denel to participate easily in naval projects and ensure maximum operational availability of the SAN fleet for effective protection of South Africa’s large maritime borders and resources. Responsibilities also include the naval base at Salisbury Island in Durban.

The division’s long term vision is to become a leading developmental player in the southern African region. It will establish a market position in line with the national vision of Operation Phakisa.

D3, based at the Denel Irene campus, will establish the Denel Tactical Cyber Command Centre (DTC3). Starting with a basic cyber-security operations centre, it will provide Denel with protection against cyber threats.

Ultimately, according to the newsletter, DTC3 will protect defence and security interests through accredited cyber-security services aligned to the National Cybersecurity Policy Framework (NCPF), the Defence Review 2015 and the National Security Strategy.

DTC3 will ensure Denel’s leadership, staff, policies, processes, practices and technologies provide ongoing oversight, management, performance measurement and course correction of all cyber-security activities.

Headed by current group executive for strategy, Theo Kleynhans the division will intensify efforts to secure projects in command and control communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (C4ISR) solutions in national and provincial security institutions and/or government departments.
“We will also co-ordinate the group’s relationship with the CSIR, aimed at partnerships and co-operation, on various projects,” he said. Given the high priority of Denel S3 projects, Kleynhans will report directly to the just-appointed group chief executive.

Elaborating on the need for two divisions, Ntshepe said: “The split gives us the opportunity place the company’s developmental agenda at the heart of expanding and building new capabilities.
“The move is exciting and encouraging for continued growth and viability.”

Translating opportunities into profitable projects will require significant capacity building which he sees in the form of an intensive recruitment drive.
“Recruitment, training and skills development programmes for both units will provide an opportunity to further expand and strength the Denel Group’s transformation agenda,” Ntshepe said.

Black woman and youth, in particular, will be targeted according to the newsletter, with preferential procurement and focussed enterprise supplier development ensuring previously marginalised groups become “enduring suppliers”.