ESAB has concluded an empowerment deal with Xeon Holdings (Pty) Ltd, of which Xeon Gas and Welding is a division, making Xeon the first BBBEE Level 1 contributor in the industry in terms of the new scorecard to be introduced in April 2015.
Country Manager and Marketing Director for ESAB Region Africa, Kim Brightwell, said the agreement between ESAB and Xeon would see Xeon become the official importer and distributor of all ESAB welding and cutting products into South Africa.
“Consequently with ESAB products being supplied in South Africa by a Level 1 BBBEE contributor, all our other distributors and customers will be able to claim empowerment supplier points on the new scorecard,” Brightwell said.
While ESAB will cease operating in its current form in southern and east Africa, measures have been implemented to ensure that the company will continue to support its products with the necessary service and process support, where required.
The majority of personnel, including ESAB Africa Managing Director, Chris Eibl, have moved over to Xeon. Mr Eibl will become the Xeon Holdings Group CEO, and customers and distributors will be working with the same personnel from the former ESAB Africa operation.
Moving personnel will ensure that Xeon is able to offer the same high standards of customer service and knowledge that our customers have come to expect from ESAB.
The ESAB Demonstration Centre and Service Repair facility will also be relocated to Xeon’s Pomona premises. Customers will experience the same level of support from the technical team that is still employed by ESAB and the service team employed by Xeon.
Specialist technical, process and marketing support for Sub Saharan Africa will be supplied through a new ESAB Regional office based in Johannesburg. This office will be managed by Brightwell.
“In essence our customers will still receive the products and quality support to which they are accustomed with the advantage of a BBBEEE Level 1 contributor, and in essence it will be business as usual,” Brightwell concluded.
ESAB has a well-established, successful relationship with both Xeon Gas and Welding and Xeon Logistics, another division of Xeon Holdings. Xeon Gas & Welding have had a distribution agreement since 2013, and Xeon Logistics has warehoused and distributed ESAB products for the past four years.
Xeon has excellent supply logistics capability, with warehousing and freight forwarding facilities in Cape Town, Port Elizabeth, Johannesburg and Durban.