Africa-Press – Botswana. As the spate of cash-in-transit heists continues in Botswana, the country’s leading security firm G4S Botswana has decided to safeguard its as- sets with a significant capital investment in new armoured vehicles to add to its existing fleet, G4S Managing Director, Mothusi Molokomme, has said in the company’s annual report for 2021.
G4S faced an unprecedented security challenge in late 2021 in the form of attacks on its cash-in-transit vehicles. “This was reflective of the general security environment wherein crime had significantly increased with most attacks aimed at businesses,” he said. “In response to this, the industry engaged the government and the police service was deployed to provide escorts to all cash vehicles to mitigate this risk.” Molokomme noted that the increased national security risk, observable from security events reported during the last quarter of 2021, has bolstered the company’s resolve to invest in modern security technology.
“This offers an opportunity to design modern security offerings to the market across all service lines,” he said. “We will continue driving the sale of integrated security solutions to ensure that we remain at the forefront of security capability in Botswana.” Molokomme stated that the deployment of integrated security solutions is expected to yield a long-term improvement in G4S margins and aligns the company to market demands in a post-COVID-19 environment. “The acquisition of G4S globally by Allied Universal provides an opportunity to tap into new cutting-edge technology, which enables us to deliver improved solutions tailored to our customers, and we plan to introduce these innovative offerings into the local market in the year ahead,” he said. On the economic front, Molokomme noted that the year that ended on 31 December 2021 was very challenging, with rising inflation and consequently the cost of living, leading to a strain on business activity.
“Many businesses folded under this strain while those that remained open reduced security requirements in some instances while others re-negotiated contractrates impacting our margins,” he stated.“Input costs, particularly fuel costs, rose astronomically resulting in a significant reduction in gross profit. Management implemented austerity measures which resulted, despite these cost pressures, in a marked improvement in profitability.” G4S’s overall revenue for the period under review grew by 2.2 percent from P190.4 million in 2020 to P194.7 million. “This increase was driven by a significant increase in the revenue of the manned guarding service (P5.5m) because of a focused retail strategy implemented in quarter two,” Molokomme said. “This was complemented by an increase in the cash service line of BWP2.7m achieved through an increase in scope for some of our existing cash clients and the increased sale of our deposit solution.”