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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’ purpose
  • 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 company secretarial and tax. This allows business units to retain their individual entrepreneurial drive, thereby increasing their agility, responsiveness and resilience.
  • 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 the chosen markets they participate in
  • 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 is centred on driving sustainable growth, increasing our diversified revenue streams and scaling our growth businesses.


OUR SYSTEMATIC APPROACH TO DEVELOPING STRATEGY

Analysis

Reunert and business units analyse the operating environment to evaluate strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats, resources and capabilities. The Risk Committee provides the material risk matters to be considered.

Development

The Exco, with input from the 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 which are incorporated in remuneration incentive targets.

History of Board oversight

Each year the Board alternates between reviewing the strategy’s implementation or approving changes to the strategy while also evaluating the strategy’s implementation. This process ensures the strategy adapts to the changing operating conditions.

2015: Approved the strategy (base year 2014)

Reviewed the strategy’s implementation

2016 - 2021: Reviewed the strategy’s implementation

2016 - 2021: Approved modifications to the strategy and interrogated the strategy implementation.

STRATEGY ROADMAP (2017 to 2021)

2017
> Reunert entered the renewable energy market by acquiring a 62,5% stake in Terra Firma Solutions
   
2018
> Reunert continued investing in growth businesses. The Group acquired SkyWire, a last mile broadband connectivity provider
> Reunert acquired DoppTech, a specialist developer and manufacturer of small-calibre fuzes. This augmented the fuze and power cell product range while opening more markets for the Fuzes cluster
   
2019
> Reunert acquired a 51% stake in Blue Nova, a business that specialises in developing and manufacturing energy storage solutions. This acquisition cemented Reunert’s position in the rapidly growing renewable energy market, added new technology and broadened access to new markets
> Reunert broadened its suite of ICT solutions with the purchase of Oculus IP, a last mile broadband connectivity supplier and merged it into Skywire
   
2020
> The Solutions and Systems Integration Cluster was formed to service its customers’ changing digital needs. The cluster focusses on digital transformation solutions and consulting advisory services targeted at medium-sized enterprises. +OneX is the first business unit in this cluster
> Reunert increased its stake in Terra Firma Solutions to 90% and invested in building, owning and operating solar assets
   
2021
> Reunert and A.P. Møller Capital announced a joint venture, Lumika Renewables. The company will design, build, finance and own renewable energy solutions for commercial and industrial clients in selected African markets. Lumika increases Reunert’s exposure to the renewable energy market
> Blue Nova launched its new office and factory space to increase production capacity for the energy storage solutions provider
> The Group enhanced the product suite of +OneX by adding two bolt-on acquisitions in hosted private cloud services and digital media and data consulting
   

REUNERT’S 2021 STRATEGY ADAPTATION

Reunert’s strategy addresses the Group’s material matters and consists of six pillars: diversification, efficiency, innovation, our customers, our people and transformation.

In 2021, and to account for the limitations Covid-19 placed on Group meetings, Reunert ran an externally facilitated, collaborative workshop to refresh the information on competitive environments and challenge strategic assumptions. The 2021 strategy development process considered the strategic execution and financial performance in 2020 and set the key focus areas for 2021. This strategy review process included, among others:


Our customers

 

Provide customer-centred products, services and solutions aligned with Reunert’s purpose, to enable customers’ success.

Our people

 

Develop a high-performance culture focusing on effective employee engagement.

Efficiency

 

Ensure best-in-class operational efficiency and enhanced capital efficiency. This includes optimising existing businesses and delivering strong cash flows.

Diversification

 

Reunert’s key strategic initiatives centre on the following:

  • Accelerate growth by building scale businesses to service rapidly developing new markets

  • Leverage the strength of the ICT Segment

  • Diversify Reunert’s revenue streams by increasing the market share in targeted export geographies where it has a competitive advantage

  • Augmenting traditional revenue streams by new complementary products and service revenues

Innovation

 

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.

Transformation

 

Transform businesses to effectively participate in the markets served

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Material Matters

REUNERT’S MATERIAL MATTERS

Material matters are those matters that substantively affect Reunert’s ability to create value over time. This includes matters that directly or indirectly impact Reunert’s capability to preserve financial, economic, environmental or social value for the Group and its stakeholders.

 

POLITICAL & REGULATORY ENVIRONMENT

  • Reunert has limited influence over this matter.

    Uncertainty in the political, policy, regulatory, labour and societal arenas impede South African businesses and foreign investment.

    The government’s 2019 IRP together with the raised 100MW threshold, has increased the liberalisation of energy generation. These structural changes provide impetus to the local energy supply environment and have a positive impact on our renewable energy cluster, energy operation and the overall SA economy.

    Reunert acknowledges the challenges in South Africa and has several mitigation strategies in place. These include a continued focus on diversification to lessen dependence on the South African market.

  • The pandemic meant that Government priorities and spend shifted towards Covid-19 relief. The issues relating to key policy and regulatory areas remain. Socioeconomic risk has intensified.

 

ECONOMY AND MARKETS

  • Reunert has limited influence over this matter.

    Export and local demand for Reunert’s products and services are affected by macro-economic conditions.

    The weak South African economy, limited infrastructure development and static business confidence limit local demand for Reunert’s products and services.

    Business confidence was eroded by the civil unrest in KwaZulu- Natal and Gauteng between 9 and 17 July 2021.

  • Covid-19 continues to hamper local economic activity, especially in the education, tourism and hospitality sectors. Inequality has deepened, and social instability has increased. Government diverted spend from infrastructure and defence, which has been negative for some business units. Economic recovery and Covid-19 containment are expected by 2024, and business units are well positioned to benefit from this improvement.

 

TECHNOLOGY

  • Reunert has a medium level of control over this matter.

    Technological innovation offers new business opportunities while disrupting existing businesses.

    Technology influences Reunert’s customers’ business processes and the product 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.

  • Covid-19 has accelerated new technology trends such as hybrid-working and a greater need for broadband connectivity.

 

PEOPLE

  • Reunert has a medium level of control over this matter.

    Reunert’s skilled and experienced employees drive a high-performance, diverse and innovative culture. Employees are committed to living the Group Values.

    Retaining top talent and ensuring transformation, especially at management levels, are high priorities for the business.

  • Covid-19 required that in‑person training programmes were conducted online. Stringent Covid-19 protocols protected employees’ safety.

    Leadership training was introduced to offer management additional support to lead through trying times.

    Employees were assisted through additional Employee Assistance Programmes.

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 the market share in targeted export geographies where it has a competitive advantage
    > Augmenting traditional revenue streams by new complementary products and service revenues
  • > Non-ZAR revenues (Rbn) 2,6
    > Inorganic growth: operating profit contribution from acquisitions (Rm) (69)
    > Five-year compound annual growth rate for total shareholder return (%) (2,1)
  • Geography:
    > Electrical Engineering leveraged its distribution partnerships in Europe and China and enhanced its market access in both geographies. Subsidiaries in the USA and Australia continued to increase their market shares
    > In Applied Electronics, Reunert and A.P. Møller Capital established a new joint venture, Lumika. Lumika is developing a portfolio of cost-efficient, renewable energy solutions for commercial and industrial customers in Africa. Fuchs continued its market diversification and building of its European order book pipeline to reduce its concentration risk in South-East Asia
    > In ICT, SkyWire’s comprehensive broad national geographic coverage provides wireless networks with access to over 60 000 high sites country-wide
    Improved solutions offering:
    > In the ICT Segment, +OneX achieved good progress in building out its core service offerings and positioning itself as an end-to-end ICT solutions and systems integrator. +OneX expanded its service offering by acquiring two complementary bolt-on businesses in hosted private cloud services and digital media and data consulting
  • Ensure best-in-class operational efficiency and enhanced capital efficiency. This includes optimising existing businesses and delivering strong cash flows.
  • > Total shareholder return (TSR) 76
    > Headline earnings per share 478
    > Return on equity 11
    > Return on capital employed (ROCE) 15
    > Operating profit margins 11
    > Free cash flow as a percentage of profit after tax 82
  • The Electrical Engineering Segment improved operational efficiencies through enhancing lean manufacturing principles.

    The Group optimised its assets portfolio by reducing its stake in Zimbabwean cable operation Cafca by 26%

    In the ICT Segment, Quince stabilised its credit risk environment, and collections steadily improved. Enterprise-wide risk controls identified in an independent review were implemented.

    The Applied Electronics Segment continued to leverage partnerships abroad to manufacture or deliver its products into foreign markets more efficiently.

    In September, Blue Nova launched its new office and factory space in Pretoria East. This production facility marks a critical milestone towards achieving its production goal of producing 200 megawatt hours monthly for 2022.

  • 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 the percentage of research and development funding targeted at international markets for new products includes:
    > Circuit breakers (Astute Range)
    > Secure communications (receivers)
    > Batteries
    > Smart energy management
  • Electrical Engineering continued its research and development into low-voltage products and expanded the product range available in the CBi Astute Range.

    Within the ICT Segment, business units continued to develop solutions that capitalised on the information technology needs created by remote working. In the Business Communication cluster, this included cloud virtual private branch exchange. The Total Workspace Provider cluster continued its investment and growth of complementary revenues. Its complementary product and service revenues now represent 20% of total channel revenue.

    The Applied Electronics Segment developed new transceiver products for airborne operations, base stations, shelters and maritime installations. Reutech Mining, led a joint venture with Horts Geo-Solutions and Syperion to develop the Berm Monitoring System to improve safety in open-pit mines.

    Reunert continued investing in renewable energy through generation, storage and switching offerings. Product innovation includes increasing the range of batteries available. The Renewable Energy cluster continued to invest in build‑operate‑own solar assets.

    Continuous improvement in battery cell technology and pricing resulted in an opportunity for new offers to the market. New products include a High-Voltage Product Range of batteries developed explicitly for integration with ATESS HPS inverters. Blue Nova batteries are now available through Leroy Merlin, one of the largest home and hardware chains in South Africa.

  • Provide customer-centred products, services and solutions aligned with Reunert’s purpose, to enable customers’ success.
  • A range of customer related key performance indicators at business unit level measure:
    > Customer loyalty
    > Customer service levels
    > Customer retention
    > Market share
  • The key activities and outcomes under the innovation pillar significantly enhance the Group’s customer value proposition.

    Electrical Engineering’s strong customer relationships are evidenced by the fact that the segment lost no material customers, despite all the challenges related to Covid-19. Circuit Breakers responded to customer needs by developing new products in the Astute Range to enable customers to remotely manage energy consumption.

    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. This cluster meets customers’ needs for alternative energy solutions by sourcing energy storage and generation products from Blue Nova and Terra Firma Solutions.

    Applied Electronics continued to collaborate with key international customers to develop custom products. The segment conducted detailed research to improve its understanding of markets and customer loyalties. While developing relationships in person has been constrained in 2021, business units have made the most of online conferences and other virtual marketing opportunities.

  • Develop a high-performance culture focusing on effective employee engagement.
  • > Succession plans: identified successors on development plans (%) 49
    > Retention of critical skills: succession plans for critical roles (%) 83
    > Health and safety: fatalities (number) 0
  • The Group redeveloped its Code of Ethics with input from employees. It was launched throughout the Group with supporting communications to entrench an understanding of the Code of Ethics and how it supports our Group Values and our ethical culture.

  • Transform Group businesses to effectively participate in the markets they serve.
  • The transformation pillar focuses on two key
    objectives:
    > To support inclusive economic growth and transformation throughout the Group
    > To deliver value-added services and solutions to improve our position in the value chain and respond to changing customer needs within
    a highly competitive environment. This links to the diversification, efficiency and innovation strategic pillars

  • Reunert continued to execute its multi-pronged B-BBEE strategy. This includes initiatives that address five elements of the B-BBEE scorecard: ownership, management control, skills development, enterprise and supplier development and socio-economic development. Reunert maintained its level 4 B-BBEE contributor status and achieved its employment equity targets.

    Reunert spent R6,7 million (2020: R5,4 million) on education through Reunert College. Reunert currently employs 40 (2020: 36) graduates.

    Reunert developed its people, enhanced its information technology systems and technologies and invested in research and development. This helped grow sales for its existing products and services while introducing new products. Refer to the diversification, innovation and people strategic pillars.

GROUP OVERSIGHT

BOARD APPROVAL

With support from representatives of other Board committees, the Board and Audit Committee oversaw the reliability and comprehensiveness of this report. The Board confirms that this report presents a balanced and accurate view of the Group’s ability to create and preserve value over time.

The Board approved the frameworks that directed the preparation of this report, and the process followed to determine Reunert’s material matters. Aligned to the Group’s combined assurance process, the Board reflected on the trustworthiness of the data and information. The Board believes that the report was prepared in all material respects according to the International Reporting Council’s Integrated Reporting Framework.

The Board, as listed below, approved the 2021 Integrated Report on 15 December 2021.

FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS

This report contains forward-looking statements, which are based on assumptions and best estimates made by management regarding the Group’s future performance. Such views are, by their nature, subject to risks and uncertainties, which may result in the Group’s actual performance in the future being different from that expressed or implied in any forwardlooking statements.

The Group neither accepts any responsibility for any loss arising from the use of the information contained in this report nor undertakes to publicly update or revise any of its forward-looking statements.

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

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 oversee the business units. Reunert’s federal model ensures appropriate accountability in each business unit and that no director has unrestricted decision-making powers
  • The executives of each business unit are responsible for their financial statements. All material business units’ annual financial statements are subject to external audit. Deloitte & Touche (Deloitte), the external audit firm, is the appointed auditor to these business units
  •  Internal audit executes an Internal Audit programme across all business units over a two-year cycle
  • The Board assesses the performance and competence of the executive directors and the Group Company Secretary via the Nomination and Governance Committee. The Audit Committee further considers the performance of the Group Chief Financial Officer, 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 has unfettered access to the internal and external auditors
  • The Group-wide Internal Financial Reporting Controls Integration Programme focused on monitoring and optimising the financial controls systems

SEGMENTAL PERFORMANCE

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

ELECTRICAL ENGINEERING

  • > Utilities (transmission, generation and distribution)
    > Renewable energy
    > Mining and industrial
    > Telecommunications network operators and data centres
    > Original equipment manufacturers
    > Residential and commercial circuit breakers
    > Rail
  • > Sub-Saharan Africa’s population growth and trends in increasing urbanisation
    > Infrastructure development
    • Demand for electricity in Africa (new generation capacity, electrification for domestic, commercial and industrial users, and increase in off-grid solutions)
    • Fibre-optic roll-out associated with broadband connectivity
    • Key market verticals for Circuit Breakers in China, Australia, USA and Europe in telecommunication, rail and solar applications
    > Mining industry
    > State-owned entities (SOEs)
    > Building industry
  • > Base load production underpinned by long-term supply contracts
    > The largest power cable market share in subequatorial Africa
    > Strong Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment
    (B-BBEE) credentials
    > Good geographic spread and a diverse production base
  • > A leading Southern African electrical infrastructure supplier
    • Manufactures a complete range of underground and overhead cable products
    • Provides turnkey high-voltage power systems
    • Manufactures a comprehensive range of telecommunications cables (optical fibre, copper and industrial)
    > Manufacture and supply of low-voltage electrical distribution, protection and control equipment (circuit breakers)
    > Strong Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (B-BBEE) credentials
    > Internet of Things (IoT) devices that measure, communicate and control electrical loads
 

ICT

  • > Business-to-business including large enterprises and a strong focus on small, medium and micro-sized enterprises
  • > Southern Africa’s economic growth
    > Geographic expansion within South Africa
    > Technology and innovation
    • Digitalisation
    • Product diversification
    • Growth in enterprise connectivity needs
    • Broadband
    • Cloud and other evolving technologies
    > Small and medium-sized enterprises
  • > Leading and trusted brands, and a leading national wireless connectivity service provider
    > Diverse and large (more than 50 000) customer base with significant cross-selling opportunities and low customer churn
    > Internet of Things (IoT) devices that measure, communicate and control electrical loads
    > Extensive network of channel partners including 42 Nashua Office Automation (Nashua) franchises and more than 350 independent dealers – supporting a broad and comprehensive national geographic footprint
    > R2,5 billion rental finance book with low loss rates
    > A strong service ethic with Nashua service engineers having, on average, 18 years of service experience; and the majority of service engineers are certified to service at least three lines of business
    > Structured to align with the low-touch economy by servicing
    products and solutions remotely
  • > Provides vertically integrated information and communication business solutions
    > The Total Workspace Provider cluster offers a range of solutions and services that facilitate and enable its customers’ business outcomes including managed print, communications, connectivity, personal computers and associated products, smart workspace solutions, and access and surveillance solutions
    > The Business Communication cluster houses South Africa’s largest independent next-generation fixed line communications solutions provider, and one of the largest independent wireless last mile broadband connectivity solutions providers
    > Solutions and Systems Integration offers enterprise cloud solutions including migration, security, hosting, storage, back-up and disaster recovery
    > Rental-based finance on equipment
 

APPLIED ELECTRONICS

  • > Ministries of defence in South Africa, Europe, Middle East, South America and South-East Asia
    > Mining, agriculture and municipal grid augmentation
    > Commercial and industrial
    > State-owned entities and Government departments
  • > International security and defence demand
    > Mining safety
    > Data security
    > Renewable energy (generation, storage and capital partnerships for project execution and equity in renewable energy assets)
    > Local and international defence forces
    > Localisation requirements of export markets
  • > World-class products developed using proprietary intellectual property to offer customisation and production
    > High-precision electronic design and manufacturing capability
    > A proven ability to integrate systems
    > Competitive cost base augmented by a qualified foreign supply chain
    > Trusted and long-term global strategic partnerships
  • > Secure communication systems for tactical airborne, land and naval-based platform
    • Military specification radios
    • Electronic subsystem manufacturer for highly specialised printed circuit boards
    • Cryptographic solutions to meet cybersecurity and
      defence requirements
    > State-of-the-art defence and commercial encryption and data protection products and services
    > Design and high-volume production of electro‑mechanical fuzes
    > Provide turnkey solar photovoltaic systems up to 50 MW with storage solutions
    > High Technology product development capability