May 19, 2020

Can natural gas reduce South Africa's dependence on coal?

Transnet
Eskom
South Africa
Coal
mahlokoane percy ngwato
2 min
Can natural gas reduce South Africa's dependence on coal?

Stay Connected! Follow @AfricaBizReview and @MrNLon on Twitter. Like our Facebook Page.

According to South Africa’s Energy Minister, Tina Joemat-Pettersson, the country will be using natural gas in order to reduce its dependence on coal.

"Gas will be a cornerstone of base-load (power)," she said "Our vision is that gas will play a significant role in delivering timely, reliable and affordable electricity."

RELATED: Transnet and BHP Strike $24 billion Coal Train Deal

Natural gas is currently the cheapest alternative to coal and nuclear, providing reliable power for peak demand periods.

The government is pushing to add natural gas to its energy mix at a time when three quarters of supply comes from coal; the country has only a smidgen of its proven gas reverses of its own. Furthermore, the country has no gas-fired generation facilities of its own, so it will need to build infrastructure in order to import, transport and burn the fuel.

Gonzalo Ramirez, director of business development for liquefied natural gas (LNG) provider Excelerate Energy said: "In the case of SA, there is no natural-gas infrastructure, so you need to build it.” 

According to South Africa’s state-owned ports and rail operator Transnet, basic engineering assessments have been carried out at three possible import terminals.

Read our exclusive company report on Transnet here.

"The foreseen LNG glut is catching the attention of a lot of new markets," Ramirez said. "One of the markets that we are seeing — and it’s very interesting because of the power-demand potential — is Africa."

According to Econometrix MD Rob Jeffrey, creating a natural gas sector in South Africa has the potential to unlock billions of rand in investment, while also stimulating new industries and creating a raft of new jobs. It goes without saying that that this would provide ailing state electricity ESKOM with a new substantial source of power.

Read the October Issue of African Business Review. 

Share article

Jun 14, 2021

5 minutes with... Janthana Kaenprakhamroy, CEO, Tapoly

Tapoly
Insurance
Leadership
Digital
Kate Birch
3 min
Heading up Europe’s first on-demand insurance platform for the gig economy, Janthana Kaenprakhamroy is winning awards and leading with diversity

Founder and CEO of award-winning insurtech firm Tapoly, Janthana Kaenprakhamroy heads up Europe’s first on-demand insurance platform for the gig economy, winning industry awards, innovating in the digital insurance space, and leading with inclusivity.

Here, Business Chief talks to Janthana about her leadership style and skills. 

What do you do, in a nutshell?

I’m founder and CEO of Tapoly, a digital MGA providing a full stack of commercial lines insurance specifically for SMEs and freelancers, as well as a SaaS solution to connect insurers with their distribution partners. We build bespoke, end-to-end platforms encompassing the whole customer journey, but can also integrate our APIs within existing systems. We were proud to win Insurance Provider of the Year at the British Small Business Awards 2018 and receive silver in the Insurtech category at the Efma & Accenture Innovation in Insurance Awards 2019.

How would you describe your leadership style?

I try to be as inclusive a leader as possible. I’m committed to creating space for everyone to shine. Many of the roles at Tapoly are performed by women and I speak at industry events to encourage more people to get involved in insurance/insurtech. Similarly, I always try to maintain a growth mindset. I think it’s important to retain values to support learning and development, like reliability, working hard and punctuality.

What’s the best leadership advice you’ve received?

Build your network and seek advice. As a leader, you need smart people around you to help you grow your business. It’s not about personally being the best, but being able to find resources and get help where needed.

How do you see leadership changing in a COVID world?

I think the pandemic has proven the importance of inclusive leadership so that everyone feels supported and valued. It’s also shown the importance of being flexible as a leader. We’ve had to remain adaptable to continue delivering high levels of customer service. This flexibility has also been important when supporting employees as everyone has had individual pressures to deal with during this time. Leaders should continue to embed this flexibility within their organisations moving forward.

They say ‘from every crisis comes opportunity’, what opportunities do you see?

The past year has been challenging, but it has also proven the importance of digital transformation in insurance. When working from home was required, it was much harder for insurers to adjust who had not embedded technology within their operating processes because they did not have data stored in the cloud and it caused communication delays with concerned customers at a time when this communication should have been a priority, which ultimately impacts the level of customer satisfaction. This demonstrates the importance of what we are trying to achieve at Tapoly in driving digitalisation in insurance and making communication between insurers and distribution partners seamless. 

What advice would you give to your younger self just starting out in the industry?

Start sooner, don’t be afraid to take (calculated) risks and make sure you raise enough money to get you through the initial seed stage.

 

Share article