Vital support for investors in AngolaFebruary 12, 2021
Francisco Monteiro, chairman and CEO of BRIMONT, talks to The Energy Year about the company’s scope of business and constant drive towards progress in Africa. Brimont is an Angolan company that operates in the areas of consulting, HR, procurement, real estate and energy.
What is BRIMONT’s scope of business?
We are an Angolan company that operates in the areas of consulting, HR dedicated solutions, procurement, real estate, energy and life care, taking as central pillars of our mission the creation of value and sustainable development since 2016.
Assisting companies that wish to operate or do operate in Angola, we do consultancy related to market implementation, procedures, strategic management and business advisory.
We also offer HR solutions, as we have the required licence to supply manpower.
A full 75% of our turnover comes from BRIMONT Procurement, which is involved in procurement activities and consultancy on supply chains. We can procure specialised equipment/goods for the oil and gas industry. This includes items such as machinery for drilling, fluids, lubricants, spare parts, PPE and all types of equipment that is normally required for the industry.
By combining different experiences and methods based on the best practices in the area of procurement and consulting, we offer our clients a range of unique services in Angola, as a one-stop-shop for specialised goods and services.
In real estate, we mostly provide asset management services. In the context of the Covid pandemic, we were able to include quarantine facilities in our portfolio.
Renewables are our main focus in the energy activities, covering utility-scale, centralised energy solar farms, onshore wind turbines and distributed solutions. Through the international partnerships established we promote our partners’ capabilities to develop, construct, operate and optimise solar projects utilising photovoltaic (PV) technology and wind turbines.
Our life care activities include an Educational Development Center for children with special education needs.
We seek to meet the legitimate interests of our shareholders, customers, suppliers and employees, while contributing to the growth of the regions where we operate.
How can the company assist international investors in entering the Angolan market?
Angola has a lot of potential and is in many senses much more stable than it was in the past. Investors just need to know how to interface and come prepared. If capable international investors come with this focus and approach appropriately, I believe their bid to enter the market can work, representing huge opportunities.
In sectors where the return rate is very high, as it is in the energy sector in general, this can be a great deal. The resources are abundant.
BRIMONT as an Angolan company can offer the necessary support for companies looking to invest in the country. We have the capabilities needed for cultural translation and local content assurance. Our teams are experienced both in Angola and abroad, in terms of education and professional experience, so we understand the expectations these companies might have.
We feel that everyone that comes to our country is someone that we are inviting.
We believe in merit and want people to feel comfortable.
What steps has the company taken to modernise procurement in the country?
We have been able to create a certain alignment, which is to understand the commercial concerns that the procurement divisions or departments might have, while also having the capability to speak on a very skilled, very technical level with the end users.
This is a major differentiating factor that we bring to the table, especially in the sense that when you look at the overall organisation chart that exists for the oil and gas industry, the local companies are more or less put in a position of working on “low-technology projects”. With this capability that BRIMONT has developed, we are aiming to ascend and be able to access more complex and technological projects.
Big international groups coming to Angola do it, and BRIMONT is perhaps one of the few Angolan companies with the capability of offering these services. This is the kind of differentiation that BRIMONT, as a local company, holds nowadays.
We supply most of the operators, as well as major contractors and the whole chain, including the downstream, where we supply gas stations and convenience stores. We cover more or less the entire spectrum. Nowadays, we are directly supplying operations at two blocks, which is significant as the overall number of active blocks in Angola is low.
What are your next steps in the chemicals business?
We will definitely continue to invest in local industry for these products while developing the existing international distribution relations.
Amongst others, sodium hypochlorite is a commodity that will continue to deserve our best attention.
It is often used as disinfectant or bleaching agent and also used in the oil and gas industry for water and mud treatment. Before it is disposed of, all of the produced water needs to be treated. Companies need high concentrations of sodium hypochlorite in order to guarantee that the process is more effective.
However, when the sodium hypochlorite is produced at the standard of 15% concentration, the natural degradation of the product will be such that after two months the concentration will be around 6%. If you do not produce it in Angola, you have to import it, so once it arrives here in Angola in the best case scenario it is at around 11%. If you need to take it to Cabinda, Soyo, Benguela or Luanda, due to the vibration during transportation it will arrive at 6 or 7%. Of course, the clients complain a lot because they pay (and so do we) for a product of 15% concentration.
The specialities supply and chemicals-related services provision are a priority. We have a dedicated team whose spirit of innovation and skills acquired combine with the strong national and international partnerships established.
How appealing are opportunities in the renewables sphere in Angola?
The renewables market in Angola is extremely appealing! The demand is considerable, the resources are abundant, the legal framework is favourable… Theoretically it is all set, with a lot of ideas and intentions, but when we go down to see what has been done and what is in place, there is not a lot.
Most of these projects require major planning and financing, both conditions that under the current economic environment are more difficult. The projects we are talking about right now will take years to complete!
Through BRIMONT Energy, we have already presented some projects, and we are waiting for any development, not only at a government level, but also from the private sector. Here, our main focus is off-the-grid photovoltaic/solar energy solutions.