Can you give us an overview of Micromine’s service offerings for the mining industry and its presence in Africa?

Micromine has been a leading provider of software solutions to the mining industry for over 30 years. We offer three main products: Geobank, Micromine, and Pitram. Geobank is a geological database management solution, Micromine is an exploration and 3D mine design software solution, and Pitram is a fleet management and mine control solution. With offices worldwide, we are currently representing South Africa at the Cape Town Mining Indaba. Our local office in South Africa serves the entire continent, providing our services to the mining industry.

How has the increased focus on geological data by governments influenced the demand for Micromine’s services?

Micromine is the only mining software company that covers the entire mining value chain, from exploration to mining. As governments prioritize the provision of better geological data in their respective countries to promote exploration, we have experienced increased demand for our services. We have witnessed significant exploration activity in Central and Western Africa, leading to more queries from government agencies. For example, we have identified Zambia as an up-and-coming country and have launched initiatives in partnership with the government and local universities. We supply our software to the universities and provide training to educators, enabling them to train the next generation of geologists and mining engineers. This promotes the adoption of our software in Zambia.

What are some of the logistical challenges that Micromine encounters when operating in different African countries?

Operating in Africa presents unique logistical challenges compared to other regions where we are active, such as Australia and the Americas. Certain countries in Africa have implemented measures to safeguard their mineral resources, making entry into these regions challenging in terms of logistics and visa requirements. For instance, accessing countries like the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has always been a challenge due to these factors. Ghana, with the introduction of the Minerals Commission, is another example of a country with specific requirements.

How do Micromine’s software solutions contribute to increased efficiency in mining operations?

Micromine and Pitram play a significant role in optimizing mining operations and improving efficiency. With over 80% of our Pitram sites being underground, our software solutions are particularly relevant in underground environments. They address key concerns such as optimization, production improvement, and safety. Our solutions have shown an overall 10% improvement in specific scenarios where studies were conducted before and after implementation. However, our software not only enhances production but also improves safety and various aspects of the mining environment.

How does Micromine invest in research and development to stay ahead of technological advancements, and where do you see the most potential for innovation?

Micromine generates revenue through annual license fees that enable users to access our software, receive support, and obtain the latest software releases. These revenues are then reinvested in R&D. When determining our product strategy roadmaps and planning for the short, medium, and long term, we consider our clients’ needs, market trends, and opportunities for innovation to make mining processes easier. All three of our products—Geobank, Micromine, and Pitram—have significant potential for further advancements. In the era of Big Data, we are exploring ways to harness and utilize massive datasets, an area where our Micromine solution is highly regarded. Additionally, data validation plays a crucial role, and this is where Geobank and Pitram offer valuable functionalities.

Looking ahead to the future, which countries in Africa do you consider as top picks for mining investment, and what role do you envision Micromine playing in this evolving industry?

West Africa continues to generate excitement in terms of mining investment opportunities. Countries such as the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Tanzania are showing improvements, although the latter faces legislative challenges. With impending political changes, South Africa is also expected to witness improvements. Zimbabwe, with its abundant mineral resources, presents an interesting landscape where we are keen to observe how things develop.

At Micromine, our main objective is to simplify exploration and mining processes while providing our clients with a significant return on investment. We aim to be at the forefront of this evolving industry, supporting mining operations with our innovative software solutions.

You may also be interested in...