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Harnessing change for future success

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The wires and cables on large mining equipment would stretch several kilometres when extended. Having them hang loose could be risky and hazardous. Image credit: Leon Louw for WhyAfrica

Harnessing change for future success

Johannesburg based Cable Technology has seen exceptional growth over the past two years, despite the extremely challenging business environment in South Africa during the Covid-19 pandemic. 

There is a thin red line between success and failure when executing an operational plan, whether it is in the mining, agricultural or energy space. Precision mining and farming depends on the most minute detail. The intended outcome is often determined by the inputs that are never seen. How often do we hear someone say: “Out of sight out of mind, right?” Well, that is a great recipe for disaster in any project manager’s book.

Throughout history, those operations that failed, are the ones where engineers and artisans neglected to pay attention to the key parts of the engine underneath the truck bonnet, or in the electrical box of an ADT, tractor, tank, aeroplane, or other vital equipment.

Cable harnessing is one of those vital functions that is not always top of mind when running large operations. A cable harness is an assembly of electrical cables or wires which transmit signals or electrical power. The cables are usually bound together by rubber, vinyl, electrical tape or heatshrink, or a combination thereof.

There are several benefits of using a harness instead of letting the cables and wires hang loose. The wires and cables on large mining, farming and military equipment would stretch kilometres when extended. By binding them into a harness they are protected against the adverse effects of vibrations, abrasions, and moisture. At the same time, space is optimised and the risk of a short or other malfunction is decreased significantly. Binding the wires into a flame retardant sleeve also lowers the risk of electrical fires.

“Cable harnessing is essential and will result in significant savings for your company in the long run,” says Gerhard van Heerden, Director of the Johannesburg based company, Cable Technology.

“Risks and hazards are increased tenfold without cable harness assemblies. Moreover, it increases the life of cables and wires substantially,” he adds.

Cable Technology is an electrical harness manufacturer that specialises in electrical harnesses in the mining, agriculture, energy, and military industries.

“Adhering to the same procedures and protocols the military industry require, we build harnesses for leading providers of heavy equipment in the mining industry, suppliers of precision planting equipment and for the largest energy storage manufacturers in Africa,” says Van Heerden.

Cable Technology was established just under a decade ago, but Van Heerden and other key staff members have more than 20 years’ experience in this specialised discipline.

Despite the numerous challenges over the last two years, Van Heerden says that Cable Technology has experienced above average growth and that the company is now much stronger than what it was before the global pandemic hit African shores just over two years ago.

Although Van Heerden adds that some of the repercussions of Covid-19 are only being felt now in the form of global stock shortages, Cable Technology is looking to diversify and expand its footprint across South Africa and then Africa north of the Limpopo.

“We have seen a lot of growth and innovation by South African companies, despite the global challenges. It is exciting to be part of this exciting industry in South Africa,” says Van Heerden.

“This year, we plan to expand our business even further, not only with our current building plans on our own premises but to increase our footprint in several industries. We see great potential in the agricultural industry – not only in building harnesses for farming equipment, but also to provide our innovative Precision Farming Systems for monitoring, tracking, and switching by use of low frequency RF devices,” Van Heerden concludes.



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AgricultureEnvironmental Management & Climate ChangeEnergyESGInfrastructureMiningPolitical EconomyTourism and ConservationWater Management