Friday, October 24, 2014

Mining procurement talk slated

Is your business ready to sell to the mining and prospecting industry?
That’s the theme of a seminar being held tomorrow (April 24) from 3-4 p.m. at La Place Rendez-Vous here.

The talk will be led by retired Ministry of Northern Development and Mines geologist John Mason, who now is project manager (mining services) for the Thunder Bay Community Economic Development Commission.
Not only is Canada is one of the largest mining nations in the world, but Northwestern Ontario is home to three of the four largest gold mines in Canada and has North America’s only primary palladium mine.
On top of that, new mines continue to open in the region.
What all of this means is that significant opportunities exist for various district businesses to sell their goods and services to mining operations both near (such as the future New Gold operation north of Barwick) and further away.
“We’re targeting small- to medium-sized enterprises who may have a likelihood of being able to sell to mining operations,” said Tannis Drysdale, a consultant for the Rainy River Future Development Corp. here.
“John Mason has a long track record of working with mining companies, and he has offered to come to Fort Frances this week and chat with our business community through the skeleton basics of how sell to different kinds of mining companies, how you find out about their procurement needs, and really what you have to do to get yourself ready to be able to sell into this industry.”
Drysdale noted the needs of mining and prospecting operations varies, and could include a wider range of businesses than one might think.
“Mining companies require heavy equipment, tires, transportation services,” she said.
“They require security and janitorial supplies.”
Mining companies also sometimes require laundry services, cleaning services, catering, and temporary accommodations like hotels.
“It’s a broad range—it’s not everybody,” stressed Drysdale. “You don’t have to go through a procurement officer to sell pizza.
“But there’s a broad range, and it varies from mine to mine.
“What Gold Corp. in Red Lake may require, and how they get it, is going to be different than the big mines on the Iron Range,” she added.
“Because New Gold is a relatively small company, they may have different processes on top of that,” said Drysdale. “So John Mason is an expert on these things and he’ll share his wisdom.”
Several area businesses that might have a significant interest in the topic have been contacted and invited to attend the seminar.
However, there are some extra seats still open.
Those who would like to attend must R.S.V.P. by e-mailing ecdev@fort-frances.com or calling 274-3276.

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