Munitions company Denel PMP aims to double its turnover to over R1 billion over the next five years as it grows its presence in Africa and meets the growing requirements of the local market.
Phaladi Petje, CEO of the Pretoria West-based company, says PMP will be embarking on a plant-renewal programme to modernise its machinery and production processes.
“We will also increase our research and development capacity. PMP is set to become the ammunition solution partner of choice both in South Africa, across the continent and in any of the markets we are targeting,” said Petje.
The Defence Review, presented to Parliament earlier this year, has highlighted the need for self-sufficiency in the provision of ammunition not only to the South African National Defence Force (SANDF), but the security cluster as a whole. “PMP is in an excellent position to meet all the SANDF’s current and future needs for small and medium calibre ammunition,” according to Petje.
“We have been in this business for more than 75 years and the experience gained over this period will enable us to meet the challenges emanating from the local defence community.”
The state-owned company has a strong relationship with the SANDF and Armscor that covers product development and testing to the ultimate production and delivery as well as after sales service, proofing and destruction of ammunition. “We offer our clients a complete life cycle management approach,” said Petje.
The company intends to build a similar relationship with the SA Police Service, metro police forces and the private security industry, Denel said in a statement today. “We can meet almost the entire local demand for small calibre ammunition in the defence and security sectors,” he said.
Petje also foresees significant opportunities for business growth on the rest of the African continent. The company now manufactures 7.62 mm calibre ammunition for the well-known AK-47 assault rifle as well as a range of 23 mm ammunition widely used by African defence forces. Denel PMP has formed strategic relationships with companies in Europe whilst similar mutually beneficial relationships are being pursued in Africa and within the Brics (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) partnership, the company said.
More than 40% of PMP current production of ammunition is destined for the export market (export revenue amounted to R185 million last year, while total revenue was R531 million). Petje said that “innovation is at the core of the company’s future” and Denel is working together with Armscor, the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) and local universities on various research and new product developments.
PMP specialises in manufacturing small- and medium-calibre ammunition and technology-related products for military and commercial use. It also manufactures crew escape systems and power cartridges for local and international clients. The company supplies handgun and rifle ammunition to the commercial sector. It also provides the mining industry with drill bits and the electrical manufacturing sector with brass strip. These are commercial products that are derived from defence technology. Lead styphnate and lead azide are supplied to the chemical industry for the manufacture of detonators for the mining industry.
PMP’s main range of products include small-calibre ammunition ranging from 5.56 mm to 12.7 mm and medium-calibre ranges of ammunition from 20 mm to 35 mm and percussion caps of all types, as well as links for various small- and medium-calibre rounds.
PMP also produces power cartridges, rocket motors and canopy fragilisation systems for the safe ejection of pilots from aircraft; Probit rock drill bits for the mining industry and primary explosives and explosive products for commercial use in the private sector.