Major project announced to boost entrepreneurship in aluminium sector

The local aluminium industry and USB Executive Development (USB-ED), the public executive development and training company of the University of Stellenbosch Business School, has joined forces in a major project to boost entrepreneurship in the aluminium sector.

The project, branded as the Aluminium Beneficiation Initiative (Aluminium BI), aims to inspire and support local entrepreneurs to produce leading-edge aluminium products, and to significantly add value to locally produced metal that would otherwise be exported.

The initiative is the brainchild of Hulamin, an aluminium products supplier based in KwaZulu-Natal and BHP Billiton Aluminium Southern Africa, a leading resources company.

Currently, the aluminium industry in South Africa exports large volumes of un-beneficiated material whilst at the same time imports finished products. Through the Aluminium BI the industry wants to promote a business model that will encourage local value-add.

The objective is to identify, develop, support and train 100 to 150 entrepreneurs in the next three years and guide them to build sustainable businesses that are able to utilise about 100 tons of aluminium per annum each. This includes businesses already in the sector looking to expand operations.

The identification of entrepreneurs will be done in conjunction with USB Executive Development and administered by one of the company’s Centres of Excellence, the USB-ED Centre for Applied Entrepreneurship.

Director of the USB-ED Centre for Applied Entrepreneurship, DeWet Schoeman, said: “We are looking for existing high potential entrepreneurs who are using or could use aluminium in a manufacturing process.”

“The general aim is provide mentorship and other support for entrepreneurs to grow their businesses and in the process use about 100 tons of aluminium each per annum,” Schoeman said.

For more information contact Doris Viljoen at or 082 965 7007