Master Drilling has made approximately US $7m in the purchase of South Africa’s Atlantis Group. This, according to media reports, is set to be the company’s second major purchase of another drilling company. Master Drilling, which is currently one of the world’s leading raise-bore drilling companies, has already bought Bergteamet, a Swedish company working in Scandanavian countries and now increasingly in Europe.
The company will fund the purchase price from its cash resources over the next year. However, this is subject to the fulfilment of various conditions, including statutory and regulatory approvals.
Danie Pretorius, CEO of the Fochville-based company said that this acquisition of Atlantis will further strengthen Master Drilling’s international footprint. He further added that it will help increase as well as diversify its pool of skills and expertise. This is especially the case in countries such as India, Brazil and Zambia, where both Master Drilling and Atlantis have active raise-boring businesses. He also mentioned that for South Africa, the acquisition also comprises a mining suppliers and parts manufacturing business.
Meanwhile, Master Drilling’s contract with the Kibali gold mine built by Randgold Resources and AngloGold Ashanti in Democratic Republic of Congo is almost coming to a close. As such, the company’s exposure to Africa will decrease. Be that as it may, the company is still looking for opportunities in Zambia and Ghana, where AngloGold is redeveloping the Obuasi gold mine and Master Drilling hopes for a contract.
Atlantis specializes in raise boring, blind boring and a host of other drilling services. Master Drilling will lend Atlantis’s empowerment partner Laone Mining & Engineering three raise-boring machines to fulfil a contract with Petra Diamonds’ Cullinan mine, an operation where Master Drilling has done work.
According to Pretorius, the acquisition process has provided a great opportunity to support an ambitious and driven, engineering business which is 100% black-owned and has the zeal to make their mark in the raise-boring industry.