South Africa MANGANESE
South Africa Manganese comprises Hotazel Manganese Mines (HMM), owned by Hotazel Manganese Mines Proprietary Ltd and Metalloys. South32 operates both HMM and Metalloys and has an effective 44.4 per cent ownership of HMM, by which Metalloys is 60 per cent owned.
South32 holds a 60 per cent interest in Samancor Holdings (Pty) Ltd and Anglo American Plc holds the remaining 40 per cent. Samancor indirectly owns 74 per cent of Hotazel, which gives South32 its ownership interest of 44.4 per cent. The remaining 26 per cent of Hotazel is owned by Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (B-BBEE) entities.
HMM is located in the manganese-rich Kalahari Basin in the Northern Cape, South Africa. The region is home to 80 per cent of the world’s known manganese ore resources.
HMM has two operations, including the Wessels Mine and Mamatwan Mine. The Wessels Mine has a higher-grade ore, which is mined 300m below the surface. It has vertical and incline shafts and uses the mechanised bord and pillar mining method. The Mamatwan Mine is an open-cut mine, which produces a lower-grade ore and uses the terrace mining method.
The Metalloys alloy plant is one of the largest smelters in the world, producing high-carbon ferromanganese (HCFeMn) and medium-carbon ferromanganese (MCFeMn) alloy. This operation is integrated with HMM with capacity to beneficiate up to 1 Mtpa of HMM’s saleable manganese products. In June 2015, the joint venture decided to temporarily suspend a restart of three of the four high-carbon ferromanganese furnaces at Metalloys.
HMM are situated in the Joe Morolong Local Municipality, in the District Municipality of John Taolo Gaetsewe. The town Hotazel was discovered in 1915 by land surveyors, who aptly described the place “hot as hell”. The two mines that together form HMM, Wessels Mine and Mamatwan Mine, were opened in 1973 and 1964 respectively.
The ferro alloy industry in South Africa can be attributed to the foresight of the late Dr. H. J. van der Bijl who was a pioneer in the exploitation of the mineral wealth of the country by the formation of African Metals Corporation (Amcor). The company was incorporated on 23 July 1937 and started production of pig iron and high carbon ferromanganese in a 10 ft hearth blast furnace in Newcastle, Natal.
In 1939 a decision was taken to construct two electric furnaces for the production of ferro alloys in Vereeniging. The plant was relocated to a site near Meyerton, where production commenced on 11 April 1951. This plant is still operational today and is known as Samancor Manganese’s Metalloys plant.
Lucas Msimanga - Vice President Operations, South Africa Manganese
Lucas was appointed as Vice President Operations looking after all the Manganese operations in Africa region in February 2015. He led the Manganese business through the review and restructuring in 2015/16. Prior to this he fulfilled the role of Vice President Operations, Aluminium South Africa.
Lucas has been with the business for 18 years where he has held different operational and functional leadership roles. This included General Manager roles at Mozal and Bayside. In 2008 he led the restructuring of Bayside Aluminium.
Previous to joining the Company he worked for Rio Tinto at their Richards Bay Minerals operation.
Lucas holds an Honours degree in Metallurgical Engineering and Masters in Business Leadership.