The Western Cape’s emerging export companies have identified possible business opportunities in Brazil and the Southern Common Market (Mercosur) which can be explored to grow their businesses.
The two businesses – Bayside Marine and Lantern Engineering which boast 100% black ownership- are showcasing their products and services at the Latin American Defence and Security Exhibition (LAAD) underway Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Bayside Marine’s Director Timothy Jacobs outlined his company’s line of services as comprising steel repairs, fabrication, hull repairs, structural and general repairs.
“We also provide mechanical services and have since resolved to also provide boatbuilding as part of increasing our diverse services portfolio. Currently, we have two types of vessels that we built, namely, the Rigid Inflatable Boat and the Workboat,” Jacobs said.
The Rigid Inflatable Boat is a high speed small vessel which is targeted at law enforcement agencies to counter illegal activities such as human trafficking, drug trafficking and illegal fishing.
The Workboat on the other hand is customised for anti-pollution measures and emergency measures like firefighting.
Jacobs also singled out Brazil’s coastline which needs protection as the ideal environment for the deployment of his range of boats.
“That is where we come into the picture because I believe that our boats can play an important role in securing Brazilian waters,” he said.
The Head of Technology and Products at Lantern Engineering Chris Williams explained his company’s line of work as that of manufacturing radio data links that allow Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) to be operated from a long distance.
“Our speciality enables UAVs to be controlled from a ground station that is at least 100-200 kilometres away. The unique property of our radius is that high power and also high bandwidth to enable for example high definition videos to be viewed from a hundred kilometres away.
“Our link allows the operator to step away from the visual line of sight and extend the range and use of the platform. In addition to the camera, the unique property of our product is that it is optimised for closing operation, for medium range operation and for ultra-long range as well,” he said.
Williams added that the Brazil platform offered them great opportunities to showcase their product to the Americas and to the rest of the world.
“I am glad to say that by showcasing here we were able to derive a view that is totally different outside from those we are accustomed to trading in. I think we have learned quite a lot from interacting with local companies in how to tackle what is quite a different market,” added Williams.
Over 21 South Africans companies are currently showcasing their services and products at the LAAD exhibition.