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For the second year in a row, the SEIFSA Golf Day was over-subscribed: 156 golfers making up 39 four-ball teams participated in the event at Reading Country Club this year, and 160 golfers making up 40 four-ball teams participated in the event at the Glendower Golf Club in 2015. Both events took place on the back of a successful Southern African Metals and Engineering Indaba three months earlier.

On behalf of the Federation, I take this opportunity to express our deepest appreciation to the companies that entered teams into the 2016 SEIFSA Golf Day and to the individuals who participated in the respective companies’ four balls. Without their support and participation, the SEIFSA Golf Day would not be the exciting event that it is.

This is an annual industry Golf Day that brings together companies in the metals and engineering sector and some of their customers and suppliers for networking, team building and fun. Your Federation, SEIFSA, is merely the organizer and facilitator. This is a day that makes it possible for people from different companies to build or strengthen relations with counterparts from other companies.

It is wonderful to see so many business leaders putting a day aside in a year to participate in an important industry event to build or strengthen relations with their stakeholders. Colleagues and I are grateful to these leaders and deeply appreciate their support.

During the past two years we have worked hard to improve the SEIFSA Golf Day. We will continue to make improvements to ensure that it becomes an event not to be missed in the industry. Look out for more innovations next year.

This year’s event stood out particularly because of the phenomenal amount of support that we received from sponsors, some of which are SEIFSA’s established suppliers. So high was the level of support that, in addition to the various prizes that were distributed during the prize-giving ceremony just before dinner, almost all 18 holes at the golf course were sponsored.

With almost every hole being a watering hole, golf players and their caddies were spoilt for choice when it came to drinks to quench their thirst on what was a very warm day. There were drinks, crisps, peanuts and biltong aplenty – in addition to other edibles – at every hole. This was a major change from what SEIFSA Golf Days used to be in the past.

My thanks go to each one of the companies that were among our sponsors for the 2016 SEIFSA Golf Day, and to the members of our staff – particularly Marketing Assistant Kristen Botha – who worked hard to encourage as many companies as possible to come on board as sponsors. We hope that we will be able to count on these companies’ support again in the years to come.

It was also very pleasing to see a number of member companies prominently exhibiting or displaying their products and services at some sponsored holes and distributing their business cards to potential customers or clients. The SEIFSA Golf Day, like the annual Southern African Metals and Engineering Indaba, is intended to serve, among other things, as a great platform at which member companies exhibit or display their expertise and products and services in an effort to win new business or increase their market share.

We remain deeply indebted to these companies.

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Over the past three months Operations Director Lucio Trentini, Chief Financial Officer Rajendra Rajcoomar and I have held a series of meetings with the Chief Executive Officers / Managing Directors of some of our member companies in the Gauteng region. I have been very happy with responses from these captains of industry to my written requests for courtesy meetings with them so that we would get to understand their companies and their concerns better and take the opportunity to brief them on SEIFSA and the metals and engineering sector.

It has been most heartening that senior business leaders – some of whom lead multi-national companies – have seen merit in making time to meet with colleagues and me. Some have taken us on tour of their plants, while many others undertook to ensure that their respective companies were much more meaningfully involved in the activities of SEIFSA and their member Associations.

More importantly, we were deeply touched by the fact that many of these business leaders were themselves greatly appreciative of our efforts to reach out to them. Often we were told by people whose companies had been members of SEIFSA for many decades that they had never before had such a courtesy visit from SEIFSA and that they were very happy to have heard from us.

Time permitting, we intend to continue with such engagements, over the next months, with leaders of companies affiliated to SEIFSA member Associations. We hope that all business leaders with whom we ask for an audience will make themselves similarly available.

For now, I want to convey my thanks and appreciation to the CEOs and Managing Directors who have made time to see us in the past three months.

The year is fast coming to an end. Soon December will be here and we will be looking forward to the beginning of new calendar year, 2017, with the hoping that it will be a much better year economically and otherwise for Southern Africa. Among our wishes, no doubt, will be that South Africa will have a much better quality of political leadership than it has at the moment.

It is no secret that, even though the global economy is not exactly flying at the moment, South Africa would be performing much better than it has done in the past few years if it had a better quality of leadership that put the country first, and not itself or some factional interests. Regrettably, 2017 is not likely to be much better politically. Instead, it is likely to be a year characterised by even more tepid leadership as the governing ANC shifts its focus to internal battles ahead of its elective congress in December.

As year-end approaches, I would like to invite all readers of this publication to look at the criteria for the SEIFSA Awards for Excellence (www.seifsaawards.co.za) and to prepare their entries. Any work done in the 2016 calendar year is eligible for the 2017 SEIFSA Awards for Excellence, for which entries will be invited early next year. Winners in each category will be announced at a function to take place in April/May next year.

Kaizer M. Nyatsumba

Chief Executive Officer

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