What are EDM’s latest developments and milestones?
EDM is a Ghanaian supply and delivery service company with expertise in consumables and spare parts for different industries. We have supplied various products (ranging from DTH, Tophammer, Rotary, RC Exploration, and grade control, as well as Diamond core exploration tools). We have also offered expert services to several large mining companies and mining contractors within the region. We are very excited about 2022 as we continue to support our clients gain drilling efficiency in a post Covid-19 bottleneck-laden supply chain environment.
How did you manage to maintain supply chain continuity during the pandemic?
Unprecedented times call for innovative thinking. During the Covid-19 pandemic, most companies, including EDM, experienced supply chain interruptions, with vessel sailing schedules disrupted whilst many flight were cancelled. What we did differently was to maintain very close relationships with our customers. We mapped out an inventory management strategy where we kept three-month stock at the customer mine site (based on consumption history), held one month stock in our warehouse for the customer, and had one month stock in transit to create a stable supply chain circuit. The exposure was huge, but it paid off, allowing us to keep a constant healthy stock and thereby insulating our business from the supply chain volatilities, whose effects are still in full force. Our approach to dealing with the supply chain bottlenecks helped us meet the demands of our customers during these difficult times and has deepened our relationship as business partners with most of our clients.
How has the rise in commodity prices impacted demand for your products?
Product demand keeps increasing as the mines keep increasing their operational fleets. Most of the existing companies are doing cut back in their various pits and some closed mines are being reinstated. Discussions are underway to have an idea of the tonnages they hope to move and their fleet requirements in advance. This will enable us to plan adequately on additional tools that may be required to facilitate the provision of the required quantities in a timely and unfailing manner. It will also enable OEMs to plan on adequate raw materials requirements and then we can also negotiate the best freight charges.
What are some of the challenges you encounter as a Ghanaian SME in the mining industry?
A key challenge for Ghanaian SMEs is access to capital. Local banks have incredibly high interest rates and steep collateral requirements because they perceive SMEs as high-risk borrowers. Fortunately, EDM has been able to competitively position itself in the market. I am proud that our company has some of the best brains from different disciplines, finance, supply chain, engineering, and administration, all synergizing in an agile way. Thanks to my business partner’s financial acumen as a risk and investment banking expert, EDM has had continuous support from the top tier banks in Ghana as well as favorable trade arrangements with suppliers globally.
Are local content laws helping to balance the competition between local and international players?
While the role of these provisions is indisputably necessary, I believe their efficiency will depend on their implementation on the ground. One of the best mechanisms that could warrant the effectiveness of local content laws is the encouragement of JV partnerships between international and indigenous players.
Where do you hope to see EDM in the next one to two years?
We hope to grow as one of the key suppliers of rock drilling tools in the territories we operate in. The majority of mining companies in Ghana are aware of EDM, which is a great accomplishment for us, but we wish to extend our presence as a known rock drilling tools supplier across West Africa, particularly in Burkina Faso, Cote D’Ivoire, and Mali.
Do you have a final message?
EDM wants to be seen as complementary to key international players (Epiroc & Sandvik) in the industry rather than competition. We have always recommended them to prospective customers for the purchase of capital equipment; we expect that the collaboration will be reciprocal in the years ahead.