By Kang Young-woon
South Korea’s industrial conglomerate Hyosung Group has recently set up a new business entity in South Africa in a move to make a foray into the bourgeoning utility market in Africa where the continent is projected to post double-digit economic growth and see a rise in demand for high-efficient energy.
According to multiple industry sources on Sunday, Hyosung has recently established a new unit in South Africa that is engaged in utility retail business and has been targeting major markets in Africa. An unnamed official from Hyosung said that the new entity was set up to more flexibly respond to the growing demand for its flagship transformers in the African market.
With the latest move, Hyosung now manages two overseas entities in South Africa - one that manufactures cushion materials for vehicle airbags and another that retails energy.
Hyosung has been engaged in various businesses in Africa since 2010. In Algeria, the conglomerate won an engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) deal to build an extra-high voltage substation. It also won two orders from Algeria’s state-owned utility distributor board to each construct a 400-kilovolt substation. In 2013 and 2014, Hyosung also secured a 1.3 megawatt solar power plant deal from the Mozambique government. Most recently, the conglomerate is also known to be supplying part of the five 400-kilovolt extra-high voltage transformers in which orders have been placed by South Africa’s utility provider Eskom.
The conglomerate industry, meanwhile, expects Hyosung to take advantage of its new business entity in South Africa and advance into other business areas such as information technology and textile in other parts of the continent.