Professional and technical services firm Aecom planned to leverage its extensive base in South Africa to expand its presence across Africa in a strategy that could see the company’s revenue from the continent doubling from $150-million in the next few years.
Speaking on the sidelines of a presentation at Aecom’s Centurion headquarters on Thursday, CEO for Africa Carlos Poñe told Engineering News Online that it planned to build on an already established base, with particular focus on East African countries.
While Africa was integral to Aecom’s growth plans, considering the expansive size of the continent, the company did not want to enter “with a shotgun approach”, indicating that a more focused and strategic plan was required, guided by three pillars.
Based on gross domestic product size and growth and the ease of doing business in each region, Aecom would invest in and strengthen its presence in, among other countries, Kenya, which would be the platform for growth into East Africa, particularly Tanzania, Ethiopia and Uganda. Mozambique and Ghana would also be critical in areas of focus over the next two years.
Expansions in Nigeria, Botswana and South Africa were also being considered, as the next phase of targeting the ‘Tier 2’ countries kicked in. Aecom, Poñe said, would also follow clients into Africa or follow “very large” projects that could differentiate Aecom from its competitors.
Aecom already had a permanent presence across 15 African countries, including Ghana, Nigeria, Liberia, Senegal, Kenya,Uganda, Tanzania, Lesotho, Mozambique, Botswana and South Africa, where the bulk of the company’s 1 200-strong African workforce was based.
Project offices were currently scattered in Ethiopia, Guinea,Rwanda, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Namibia,Gabon, Côte d’Ivoire and Congo.