Interview with Pierre-Yvan Gravière
Director of Africa Power & Energy at Bolloré Logistics
Which are the African countries you are the most excited about in terms of their energy development potential and the financing of such projects?
« Africa has been experiencing a tremendous expansion in terms of energy projects across the continent. A lot of countries are involved. The following markets are among the most important: Morocco, Egypt, Senegal, Mali, Burkina Faso, Guinea (Conakry), Côte d'Ivoire, Benin and Kenya.
We are lucky to be able to count on our teams in 43 African countries to ensure customer support across the territory. »
What advice would you give to new investors on the continent?
« First of all, we would advise them to keep an open mind in order to truly understand the local culture of each country and take time to learn about its environment.
You don't do business in Côte d'Ivoire as you would in Kenya.
We would advise them to be patient and to be careful to select experienced local partners for their projects. They should also not take anything for granted from past experiences and always take an approach on cultural diversity and the environment from a new perspective.
In terms of logistics, feasibility studies and standard operating procedures have proven to be highly effective together with continuous operations assessment. »
What added value does Bolloré Transport & Logistics provide its partners in this type of projects?
« As a historical partner of Africa, Bolloré Transport & Logistics has acquired over time a unique expertise in building customized logistics solutions for industrial projects dedicated to energy projects: port operations, route analysis, special transportation, specific customs procedures, etc.
For each new project we are tasked with, the Bolloré Transport & Logistics network (25,000 employees in Africa) provides us with the human capital and equipment we need to ensure these projects are completed in time and are a total success. This collaborative work approach has enabled us to develop our expertise is numerous countries.
To date, our teams of experts are involved in over 100 energy projects in Africa, including projects associated with the Inga dam in the Democratic Republic of Congo (the second largest in the world) and the Kenya Lake Turkana wind farm (the largest in Africa). »