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Overview

Reunert comprises a diverse group of companies both in terms of size and business activity. Broadly speaking, the group is strategically linked through its electrical, electronic and ICT engineering capabilities in either their core competencies and/or the markets they serve.

Group Strategy

Reunert’s core competencies are its electrical and electronic engineering capabilities, coupled with service skills in information communication technologies.

CORE COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGES

  • Reunert embraces values-driven leadership supported by its Group Values and Code of Ethics
  • The Group operates in diverse electronic/electrical and information communication technology markets, and in each it is focused on enabling customers’ success
  • Reunert has a federal business model. Head Office provides strategic oversight and the common core competencies required by the business units in the Group such as secretarial and tax. This allows business units to retain their individual entrepreneurial drive, thereby increasing their agility
  • The Group has well-known and respected brands, including:
    • CBI-Electric
    • Reutech
    • Nashua
    • ECN (Electronic Communications Network)
  • Major business units are either first or second in their markets
  • Reunert has well-managed operations, strong cash flows and business units that collectively show resilience through macro-economic cycles
  • The Group’s largely ungeared balance sheet creates the capacity to both execute capital projects and mergers and acquisitions opportunities
  • Reunert has a strong focus on long-term shareholder value creation – its key metrics reflect a shareholder focus, such as total shareholder return, profit, growth and return on capital employed over the economic cycle

Reunert’s strategic direction

Reunert’s strategy focuses on sustainable growth and reducing its revenue concentration in South Africa. Employees are aligned on Group strategy with clear understanding of their expected performance and the related objectives.


THE REUNERT STRATEGY PROCESS

Analysis

Head Office and business units analyse the operating environment to evaluate their strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats, resources and capabilities, and the Risk Committee provides input.

Strategy development

The Exco and business unit management collaboratively develop the Group strategy for Board approval. Each segment and business unit cascades its strategy aligned to the Group’s strategy.

Annual review

Business unit executives review and validate strategies annually. They identify any changes or additional initiatives required to drive the business strategy. Three-year financial forecasts are updated with new plans and initiatives. The annual budget process includes strategic key performance indicators (KPIs) which are incorporated in remuneration incentive targets.

History of Board oversight

2015: Approved the strategy in March 2015.

2016: Reviewed the strategy’s implementation.

2017: Approved modifications to the strategy and interrogated the strategy implementation.

2018: Reviewed the strategy’s implementation.

2019: Approved modifications to the strategy and interrogated the strategy’s implementation.

2020: Reviewed the strategy’s implementation.

Reunert’s 2020 strategy review

The strategy addresses Reunert’s material matters and comprises six pillars: diversification, efficiency, innovation, our customers, our people and transformation. Targeted acquisitions are a key part of these strategic objectives.

The 2020 strategy review revisited previous reviews to assess overall progress since 2015. It considered strategy execution and financial performance in the 2019 financial year and 2020’s key focus areas. These included:

The strategy review took place well before COVID-19 became a material consideration. The data needed to understand the pandemic’s full implications for the Group strategy became available after the strategy review was complete. This new understanding will be incorporated into the Group’s next strategy review, commencing in October 2020, drawing on six months of operational data. In the interim, individual business units made short-term adaptations to their plans based on known information.

The Group continues to execute the Sustainability Strategy adopted in 2018


Our customers

 

Provide customer-centred products, services and solutions.

Our people

 

Develop a high-performance culture focusing on effective employee engagement

Efficiency

 

Ensure best-in-class operational efficiency and enhanced capital efficiency

Diversification

 

Diversify and increase earnings through a combination of geographic expansion into target markets, new products and services, new and enhanced solution offerings, and new early life cycle businesses

Innovation

 

Develop new products and services and reduce costs through innovation, research and development

Transformation

 

Transform businesses to effectively participate in the markets served

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Our salient features

REUNERT’S MATERIAL MATTERS

The Group’s material matters are the matters that most affect its ability to create value. It considers material matters those that directly or indirectly impact its ability to preserve financial, economic, environmental, or social value for the Group and its stakeholders.

 

POLITICAL & REGULATORY ENVIRONMENT

  • The South African business environment faces increasing uncertainty in the political, policy, regulatory, labour and societal spheres. Reunert recognises the external developments in its current and target markets and considers various scenarios in its mitigation strategies.
  • The pandemic shifted Government priorities and spend, and uncertainty in key policy and regulatory areas remain. Socio-economic risk is likely to intensify.

 

ECONOMY AND MARKETS

  • Reunert’s target export and local markets present growth opportunities for its products and services. The Group’s local macroeconomic and market trends are inextricably linked to the South African environment, with infrastructure and state institutions facing a variety of headwinds.
  • COVID-19 further depressed local economic activity, increased uncertainty and led to in-country lockdowns, all of which made the business environment more difficult. Its impacts on specific business units were varied and included new opportunities.

 

TECHNOLOGY

  • Technological advances provide new opportunities and disrupt existing business. Technology influences Reunert’s customers’ business processes and the products and service offerings they require. Competitors’ innovation can disrupt business. The Group’s focus on innovation and investments in relevant technologies is a strong driver of growth, which leverages the Group’s existing intellectual property.
  • The pandemic accelerated adoption of certain technologies, such as digital business and cloud solutions. By extension, demand for related products and infrastructure, such as broadband connectivity, increased.

 

PEOPLE

  • Employees’ skills, experience and commitment to the Group Values underpin Reunert’s high-performance, diverse and innovative culture. Equitable representation, especially at management levels, is a business imperative.
  • Reunert implemented remote working where required and ensured employees’ safety through appropriate policies and procedures.

STRATEGIC OBJECTIVES

  • > Accelerate growth by building scale businesses to service rapidly developing markets
    > Leverage the strength of the ICT Segment
    > Diversify Reunert’s revenue streams by increasing penetration into targeted export geographies where it has a competitive advantage
  • > Non-ZAR revenues (Rbn) 2,3
    > Inorganic growth: operating profit contribution from acquisitions (Rm) (63)
    > Five-year compound annual growth rate for total shareholder return (%) (3,7)
  • > Electrical Engineering continued developing products aligned to original equipment manufacturers’ requirements in rail, renewable energy and telecommunications markets. The telecommunications businesses invested into high-speed data cable capacity, and Low Voltage launched the Astute Range of energy monitoring, scheduling and control devices with load management capability
    > ICT’s last mile broadband connectivity and cloud-based solutions have grown robustly. The segment rolled out a digital signature solution, further enabling the remote working economy
    > Applied Electronics further diversified its revenue streams in renewables by increasing ownership and investment in BOO projects
  • Ensure best-in-class operational efficiency and enhanced capital efficiency. This includes optimising existing businesses and delivering strong cash flows.
  • > Total shareholder return (TSR) (55)
    > Normalised headline earnings per share (NHEPS) growth (% change) (80)
    > Return on equity 3
    > Return on capital employed (ROCE) 5
    > Operating profit margins 4
    > Free cash flow as a percentage of profit after tax 1 126
  • The Electrical Engineering Segment improved raw material costs. It also enhanced operational efficiency by utilising new original equipment manufacturer partnerships to extract shop floor efficiencies in fibre optic and power cables.

    The Group optimised its portfolio of assets by selling PanSolutions, which no longer met the Group’s strategic requirements. The Applied Electronics Segment continued leveraging partnerships abroad to more efficiently manufacture or deliver its products into foreign markets. This lowered costs while improving capacity.

  • Develop new products and services and reduce costs through innovation, research and development. This includes leveraging existing brands and distribution channels to introduce new products and services.
  • > Increasing research and development funding targeted at international markets for new products includes:
    • Radars (Esprit)
    • Circuit breakers (5G, Astute Range, solar energy and rail)
    • Secure communications (new airborne platform, new high frequency radios)
    • Fintech encryptions
  • Electrical Engineering launched the CBi Astute Range.

    The ICT Segment’s Solutions and Systems Integration Cluster serves customers’ evolving needs in the rapidly changing information communication technology landscape.

    The ICT Segment began collaborating with Applied Electronics to supply ICT’s customers with energy storage solutions as part of its Total Workspace Provider offering. It developed services to enable customers’ employees to work remotely; and it developed and commercialised cloud security value added services.

    Reunert continued investing in renewable energy through first-in-South Africa offerings that combine generation, storage and switching capabilities. The Group increased its shareholding in Terra Firma Solutions, the renewable energy business, from 62% to 90%. Blue Nova, the battery business, entered the grid-tied storage market.

  • Provide customer-centred products, services and solutions, aligned with Reunert’s purpose, to enable customers’ success.
  • > A variety of customer related KPIs at business unit level measure:
    • Customer loyalty
    • Customer service levels
    • Customer retention
    • Market share
  • The key activities and outcomes under the innovation pillar are a significant part of enhancing the Group’s customer value proposition. Electrical Engineering’s strong customer relationships is evidenced by the fact that no customers were lost – despite all the challenges related to COVID-19.

    ICT’s Total Workspace Provider offering continued to expand and provided the Group with higher complementary revenues. It continued servicing customers with minimal disruptions during COVID-19 lockdowns.

    Applied Electronics continued to collaborate with key customers to develop customised products. The segment conducted detailed research to improve its understanding of its markets and customer loyalties.

  • Develop a high-performance culture focusing on effective employee engagement.
  • > Succession plans: identified successors on development plans (%) 43
    > Retention of critical skills: succession plans for critical roles (%) 76
    > Health and safety: fatalities (number) 0
  • The Group implemented Building Better Teams training to empower employees to become more effective and collaborative team members. The training gave them the opportunity to comment on the Reunert Code of Ethics. These comments will be considered when refreshing the Code of Ethics – which was postponed due to the pandemic.

    Refer to page 55 of the 2020 Integrated Report for more detail on these measures

  • Transform Group businesses to effectively participate in the markets they serve.
  • > Improvement in employment equity representation at top and senior management (%) 6
    > Reunert Limited B-BBEE Codes level 4

  • In 2020 training interventions were aligned with Government requirements and specifically Broad-based Black Economic Empowerment (B-BBEE) regulations. Learnerships and trainees are focused on employees’ tertiary development and external candidates in occupations that will benefit the diverse skills need of the Group. Reunert maintained its Level 4 B-BBEE contributor status, and it achieved its employment equity targets (refer to page 61). The Group spent R5,4 million (2019: R6,1 million) on educating youth at the Reunert College. Currently, Reunert employs 36 (2019: 42) former graduates.

    Reunert invested in skills development, IT systems and technologies and research and development. This aimed to grow sales for its diverse products and services and, ultimately, drive business growth. Refer to the diversification, innovation and people strategic pillars.

GROUP OVERSIGHT

BOARD APPROVAL

The Board and Audit Committee, assisted by other Board committees, oversaw the integrity and completeness of this report. The Board applied its collective mind to its preparation and presentation and concluded that it presents a fair and balanced view of the Group’s integrated value creation.

The Board approved the frameworks that guided the preparation of this report and the process followed to determine Reunert’s material matters. In line with the Group’s combined assurance process, the Board considered the reliability of the data and information. The Board further believes that the report complies with the International Integrated Reporting Council’s Integrated Reporting Framework.

The Board, as listed below, approved the 2020 Integrated Report on 30 December 2020.

FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS

This report contains certain forward-looking statements with respect to Reunert’s anticipated performance and prospects, results and operations. Although these statements represent Reunert’s future expectations and judgements, the opinions are subject to known and unknown risks and uncertainties that could adversely impact the Group’s businesses and their financial performance.

Undue reliance should not be placed on such opinions, forecasts or data. Forward-looking statements apply only as of the date on which they were made. Reunert does not undertake any obligation to publicly update or revise any of its opinions or forward-looking statements, whether to reflect new data or future events or circumstances.

The financial information on which the forward-looking statements are based was not audited or reported on by Deloitte, Reunert’s independent external auditors.

RELIABILITY OF INFORMATION

The following contribute to the reliability of information in this report:

  • Reunert has transparent and sound business processes, underpinned by an ethical culture
  • The Board of directors (Board) sets the Delegation of Authority Framework and delegates responsibility to executive management to appropriately oversee the business units. Reunert’s federal model ensures appropriate accountability in each business unit and that no director or executive has unfettered powers of decision-making
  • The executives of each business unit are responsible for their financial statements. All material business units’ Annual Financial Statements are subject to external audit. The external audit firm, Deloitte & Touche (Deloitte), is the appointed auditor to all these business units
  •  Internal audit executes an internal audit programme across all business units over a two-year cycle
  • The Board annually assesses the performance and competence of the executive directors and the Group Company Secretary via the Nomination and Governance Committee. Further, the Audit Committee assesses the performance of the Group Chief Financial Officer (CFO), Group finance function and internal and external audit
  • The Board, assisted by the Audit Committee and other Board committees, oversees the preparation of the Integrated Report and Annual Financial Statements, and it has unfettered access to the internal and external auditors

SEGMENTAL PRIORITIES

OUR SEGMENTS, THEIR KEY PRODUCTS AND SOLUTIONS, MARKETS AND GROWTH AREAS
 

ELECTRICAL ENGINEERING

  • > Manufactures and supplies low-voltage distribution, protection and control equipment (circuit breakers)
    > Designs, manufactures, installs and maintains a complete range of power cables
    > Manufactures and supplies copper and optical fibre telecommunications cables
  • > Municipalities
    > Utilities
    > Mining industry
    > State-owned entities (SOEs)
    > Building industry
  • Gross domestic fixed investment is a key indicator of growth for Electrical Engineering.

    As Sub-Saharan Africa’s population and economies grow, so does its investment into infrastructure

    Smart metering is in its infancy, and is becoming more relevant with the internet of things.

    5G, electric vehicles and renewable energy are accelerating growth areas.

  • POWER CABLES

    African Cables

    Zamefa

    TELCOM CABLES

    CBI Telecom Cables

    LOW VOLTAGE

    CBI Low Voltage

 

ICT

  • > Total Workspace Provider that distributes business systems with products focused on Total Workspace Provider and business communications and solutions
    > Vertically integrated communications offering includes data and voice communication and network services and solutions
    > Offers last mile broadband connectivity
    > Provides rental-based finance solutions1
    > Provides comprehensive digital and cloud services, including datasecurity services

    1 Includes references to loan book in this report.

  • > Corporates
    > Retailers
    > SOEs
    > Small and medium-sized enterprises
  • Business confidence is a key indicator of growth for ICT

    Broadband connectivity, particularly last mile connectivity, is a significant growth opportunity. The pandemic caused by the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) has accelerated demand for high-speed connections and cloud-based products.

    Digitisation creates a market for unified communications

  • Business communication

    SkyWire

    Nashua Communications

    Total Workspace Provider

    Nashua

    Rental-based finance

    Quince Capital

    Solutions and Systems Integration Cluster (established in 2020)

    +OneX

 

APPLIED ELECTRONICS

  • > Manufactures tactical secure communication systems
    > Designs and manufactures fuzes and related defence products
    > Develops and manufactures ground and naval search and tracking radar systems, as well as mining radar sensor systems used in underground and open-cast mining
    > Manufactures electronic components and printed circuit boards
    > Provides and owns renewable energy engineering solutions including long-life battery storage suited to African temperatures
    > Provides solutions to meet cybersecurity requirements
    > Supplies system engineering and logistic support services in telecommunications, radar, satellite and mining
  • > Corporates
    > Municipalities
    > Governments
    > SOEs
    > Local and international defence forces
    > Mining houses
  • Global defence spend and gross domestic product are key indicators of growth for Applied Electronics

    Renewable energy generation and storage is a growing market with significant opportunities. The sector is incentivised by policies and regulations in many countries

    Secure communications and encryption hold promising prospects, specifically in fintech.

    Reunert’s target export markets are increasing their defence spend in aggregate.

    The smart mining market is growing, and Reunert’s radar equipment is well positioned to leverage these opportunities

  • SECURE COMMUNICATIONS

    Reutech Communications

    Omnigo

    Nanoteq

    FUZES

    Fuchs Electronics

    DoppTech

    RADARS

    Reutech Radar Systems

    RENEWABLE ENERGY

    Terra Firma

    Blue Nova