“We hold things together. Nine times out of 10, if something has to be connected with bolts and nuts, then we are part of that supply chain,” explains founder and CEO of Bolt and Engineering Distributors (B.E.D.), Mike Giltrow.
At this year’s South African Institute of Steel Construction’s Steel Awards in October, B.E.D. sponsored striking table décor which reflected the Game of Thrones theme that had been chosen to represent the role of steel through the ages at this iconic annual steel industry showcase at Emperor’s Palace in Johannesburg.
This is the second consecutive year that B.E.D. has been a Steel Awards sponsor. In 2022, they were a Premium Partner sponsor.
“The table décor – for which B.E.D. supplied the steel that fellow SAISC member General Steel Works cut and welded – demonstrated the versatility and value of steel in infrastructure and construction projects across the ages, and indeed in this day and age, across a number of different sectors,” Giltrow comments.
B.E.D.’s relationship with the SAISC has always been an extremely positive one and goes back several years, punctuated by a hiatus due to the economic austerity measures which were unfortunately required in the aftermath of the impact of negative mining industry events such as Marikana in 2012.
Having returned to the SAISC fold last year, B.E.D. has once again found membership to be very beneficial – and has not only participated in events such as the Steel Awards and other networking events, but also been invited to do training presentations on new products.
Celebrating its 40th anniversary in November this year – and although the B.E.D. Group started out supplying a comprehensive range of locally produced and imported fasteners – the company has diversified into quality tools, welding and cutting equipment and consumables, bearings, personal and protective equipment (PPE), industrial paints and thinners, oils and lubricants, and lifting products during that time.
“Our input and participation in forums such as the SAISC has always been well received, because members are like-minded, equally motivated people who all want the Institute – and the entire steel value chain – to benefit in some way,” says Giltrow.
“This year, more than ever, I was blown away by the quality of the projects which were nominated for the Steel Awards. The projects are world-class, and show that South African steel companies can compete with the very best. We are very proud that award recipients are some of our customers and, in many instances, our products – specifically fasteners – played a pivotal role in those projects,” he adds.
Next year the B.E.D. Group would like to ramp up our support for the SAISC Awards and perhaps even sponsor a category award.
“We have always felt comfortable that any sponsorship we provide will always be put to good use and benefit all members. There is also a substantial amount of PR, marketing and media coverage around the Awards and winning projects. Therefore, in 2024, we would like to be involved with a specific Steel Award category, as we will get even more mileage from that,” he points out.
Giltrow says that industry should never underestimate the value of the SAISC as an Institute, which is one of just six worldwide.
“The SAISC is up there with the best of what such Institutes can offer the steel sector, and we can all be so proud of the hard work that they are doing for our industry to develop and showcase the South African steel value chain locally and Pan-Africa !
Through our challenges over the years, we have all proven that we are resilient. A huge amount of value and intellectual property resides in the SAISC and the steel value chain – and B.E.D is proud to be part of that,” Giltrow concludes.