Which markets and jurisdictions hold the strongest potential for growth for Maestro Digital Mine?
Maestro continues to grow its market share in North America due to local presence as well as the ability to serve and support our clients in similar time zones. We were also very fortunate to participate and support a C$35 million project managed by the Ultra Deep Mining Network in Canada to solve some of the challenges of mining in ultra-deep mines. With ventilation-on-demand (VoD) having its origins in Sudbury-Canada, we have been able to use the IP and lessons learned to advance our newest solutions and products. The United States is very similar. With proven products and solutions, it has been far quicker to enter this market, resulting in a new office in Nevada to support the hard-rock mining companies. Most of our new business is from the top 20 global mining companies, due to the success of other projects at their sister sites. Having a strong reputation for living up to our core purpose and values has helped scale our business. Two other markets that have seen a huge uptick are Africa and Australia. Maestro Digital Mine is also putting huge effort into Latin America, realizing that this market needs time for us to adjust to both cultural and language differences.
Maestro Digital Mine wanted to increase sales 40% by 2022. Has the company reached this target?
All our Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) devices and software products increased by 56% over 2020. Last year was our best year ever, and 2021 has improved even more. We are seeing great growth in the IIoT, network communications, and software spaces. One of our major value propositions entails what we call “disruption by elimination” by developing mine hardened multi-variable measurement and devices that eliminate complex PLCs, cabinets, engineering services and wiring. Maestro Digital Mine’s product that continues to be most in demand is our environmental monitoring station, which include our Vigilante AQS and Zephyr AQS platforms.
Is Maestro looking to grow into the LTE space and how rapid is the sector’s rate of adoption?
At this moment, it appears that LTE is over-promising and under-delivering in the underground mining sector. At times, mining companies want a magic bullet to their problems instead of looking at a holistic solution that might involve several solutions that are unique but immediately functional. From a technical standpoint, we are willing and able to develop for this environment noting that LTE will not eliminate wired Ethernet solutions that exist in all conventional networks. We see LTE as a good solution for mobile communication applications if the LTE industry can properly scale and reduce costs. The mining client will need a greater depth of expensive outside support or more trained on-site communication specialists that can handle the extra complexity of LTE, while still servicing traditional Wi-Fi and wired networks. Simply put, it is not for the faint of heart. Our Plexus PowerNet last mile communication network has proven this point having a 60% growth over last year. It is simple, can be rolled out by any electrician or development miner and reduces the requirement of expensive and additional power distribution to all the wireless access points.
How does Maestro Digital Mine’s ventilation IIoT and last mile network solutions support clients?
Maestro Digital Mine manufactures and retains the IP of all devices and digital networks and specifically serves the underground mining sector. We work with clients towards energy savings by directing ventilation air to the areas that require it and reducing it to the areas without miners or operating equipment. This can reduce ventilation demand by 20-50%, contributing to greenhouse gas reduction to support global warming and energy initiatives. Our ventilation IIoT solutions have been successfully integrated into Howden's Ventsim CONTROL Ventilation Optimization software which can remotely monitor, control, and automate in real-time the total underground mine ventilation from the surface. Combined with Maestro's Vigilante AQS and Zephyr AQS air quality monitoring stations and using MaestroFlex automated regulators, Ventsim CONTROL can be easily configured to manage the ventilation by reducing the complexity and integration time of any project.