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Published: 29 May 2017

Windhoek Light Namib Quest screams success

Windhoek Light Namib Quest screams success Close to 50 cyclists participated in the 6-day Windhoek Light Namib Quest which took place from Sunday, 21 May to Friday, 26 May 2016. Cyclists started the race in Windhoek and ended in Swakopmund, competing in team categories for ‘Men’, ‘Women’ and ‘Mixed’.

Sponsored and owned by Namibia Breweries Limited (NBL) – a subsidiary of the Ohlthaver & List (O&L) Group – through its brand Windhoek Light, this annual event which, according to NBL Manager: Global Sponsorship & Events, Ian Stevenson is aimed at promoting a healthy lifestyle; supports the sport of, and love for cycling, and creates a platform for healthy competition for cyclists, holds a promising future following the 2017 event. Stevenson: “The 2017 Windhoek Light Namib Quest was a fantastic event. It was very well organized with great feedback from the cyclists. Windhoek Light purchased this annual cycling event from African Extreme Promotions (AEP), which saw a very successful 7th edition of the Windhoek Light Namib Quest.”

Of the 44 cyclists that took part in the 2017 Windhoek Light Namib Quest, 22 were foreigners which included 17 South Africans, three from Portugal and two from Botswana. NBL Manager: Sponsorship & Events, Daniel Keulder: “While we welcome participants from all corners of the globe, especially in support of promoting Namibia as a great holiday destination, as well as a suitable destination for sports, especially for that of cycling, we hope to see more Namibian cyclists join in on this exciting event going forward. We trust that next year will see Namibian participants overwhelm that of foreigners.”

Keulder continued to emphasize that NBL set a target of maximum 75 cyclists for the 2018 event, and will not exceed this number in order to keep it exclusive and personal. Keulder: “We are very inspired by the positive feedback from the cyclists. What sets the Windhoek Light Namib Quest apart from other cycling events is the personal aspect we bring to the race - with the event limited to 75 riders it is easy to get to know everyone on the Quest and make friendships for life around the camp fire.

Germien Stals and Wilmien Chamberlaine from Namibia won the women’s team section, while Jorge Padrones Leon and Pedro Campos from Portugal won the men’s category. The Mixed Team category as well as the overall title was won by Ben-Melt Swanepoel and Yolandie Du Toit from South Africa.

Prize money was sponsored by Hollard Insurance, while Novel Ford made two vehicles available for logistics assistance during the quest.
 
Published: 23 May 2017

Windhoek Light helps young cyclists’ dream come true

Windhoek Light helps young cyclists’ dream come true Melki Hamukoto and Maruen Kleopas are probably two of the most excited cyclists currently participating in the 2017 annual Windhoek Light Namib Quest – which is a dream come true for the two gentlemen. As main sponsor, Namibia Breweries Limited (NBL) – a subsidiary of the Ohlthaver & List (O&L) Group – through its brand Windhoek Light has procured the Windhoek Light Namib Quest Mountain Bike (MTB) Race and in the process has realized the dream of the two 19-year olds by giving them a chance to participate in this prestigious race.

Melki and Maruen could not contain their delight at the official launch and registration of the race on Saturday, 20 May. The race, which kicked-off on 21 May, is currently in progress until Friday, 26 May when cyclists will finish their 6-day stage race from Windhoek to Swakopmund. NBL Events & Sponsorship Coordinator, Nico Gericke: “In light of developing and supporting the sport of cycling in Namibia, Windhoek Light identified Maruen and Melki as two individuals from less privileged backgrounds who are determined to work hard and follow their dreams. We are inspired by their dedication and commitment to follow their dreams and are thus proud to reward them with the opportunity to participate in the sought after Windhoek Light Namib Quest.”

The passionate cyclists, Melki and Maruen, are members of the Physically Active Youth Cycling Club, and part of a broader developmental and support program for underprivileged youth, named ‘paynamibia’. Their academic performance played a big role in selecting them from the club as the ultimate two cyclists to participate in the 2017 Windhoek Light Namib Quest.

Melki: “While I also like playing football, I love cycling and am truly honored, and very excited at the opportunity granted to me by NBL, in particular Windhoek Light. This will be my first time to participate in the Namib Quest – a dream come true!” Melki says he has participated in the annual Desert Dash once and the fact that he has now been granted the platform of the Windhoek Light Namib Quest, is an indication to him that he is doing something right, and is on the right track. Melki: “I am truly blessed and look forward to giving my best.” He completed his Grade 12 last year, but is currently studying Physical Science to add to his Grade 12 results – a required subject for entrance to studying aviation, his dream career.

Maruen has participated in the annual Otjihavera Experience in 2015 and 2016, as well as the Nedbank cycling event earlier this year. He is currently doing his Grade 12 through a scholarship and is also participating in the Namib Quest for the first time. Maruen:”I look forward to a completely new experience, and to a platform where I can challenge myself even more than I have before. I don’t think Windhoek Light or NBL realize the impact they have had on my life, through this sponsorship. I am grateful beyond.”


Project manager for paynamibia, Ursula Matzopolous is excited at the exposure not only given to Melki and Maruen through this sponsorship by NBL and Windhoek Light in particular, but also at the exposure it provides to the paynamibia program. Matzopolous: “The visibility that paynamibia receives means everything, in that development and support programs like this needs as much exposure as possible, in order to receive the relevant support they need to serve its purpose. I am also very happy for Melki and Maruen for the opportunity to participate and be part of such a high profile event. They deserve this.”

The O&L Group Manager: Corporate Communications, Roux-che Locke highlighted this assistance by NBL as a direct link to the group purpose of ‘Creating a future, enhancing life’ for all Namibians. Locke: “Education, skills development, and youth development are critical pillars of the O&L Corporate Social Investment (CSI) agenda. The Windhoek Light donation to Melki and Maruen is testimony of the O&L Group’s commitment and passion to uplift the communities in which we operate, and as such we are proud, yet humble, to have reached out to two young Namibians to make their dreams come true. What a simple, yet beautiful, way of ploughing back into the community, more specifically the lives of our youth who are the future of our nation.”

The sponsorship entails:

• The Windhoek Light Namib Quest full race fees, which includes lodging and boarding.
• Exposure to international cyclists.
• Exposure to a unique and challenging Namibian MTB race.
• 2 sets of cycling kits each.
• Mountain bike rental, including the servicing of the bikes during the race, with the support of Mannie’s Bike Mecca.
• Sleeping bags sponsored by Cymot.
 
Published: 23 May 2017

Kraatz appointed as Namibian agent for Hitachi Construction Machinery Africa

Kraatz appointed as Namibian agent for Hitachi Construction Machinery Africa

Kraatz, a subsidiary of the O&L Group, has been appointed as the Namibian agent for Hitachi Construction Machinery, effective 1 June 2017. The award of the agency by Hitachi Construction Machinery Africa to Kraatz follows months of extensive discussions exploring opportunities to enhance service delivery to Hitachi clients in Namibia. As the Namibian agent, Kraatz will sell Hitachi equipment and spares as well as perform the on-site maintenance for Hitachi equipment owners in Namibia.

Speaking at the award ceremony on Tuesday, 23 May in Windhoek, Hitachi President Toshiaki Takase said that Hitachi is very pleased to announce their expanding presence in the Namibian market and very excited about the future prospects and partnership with Kraatz as part of the O&L Group. Hitachi Construction Machinery will focus on the Construction and Mining Machinery business, which includes Hydraulic Excavators, Wheel Loaders, Rigid Dump Trucks, Cranes & Foundation Machines, and Mine Management Technology Systems. “We are also fully committed to support Kraatz with all Marketing, Sales and Product Support functions throughout our venture and was thus keen to find a local partner that can deliver reliable solutions and optimal support to all our mining and construction clients. This venture further confirms our commitment to supporting our existing customers ensured through Hitachi’s partnership with Kraatz where our clients will enjoy the benefits of support provided by a local dealer, a capacity building program that would ensure local skills transfer as well as ICT solutions”, said President Toshiaki Takase.

According to the O&L Group Executive Chairman, Sven Thieme, Kraatz as a wholly owned Namibian company and part of the O&L Group, subscribes to the O&L Purpose of “Creating a Future, Enhancing Life” – which sees the group committed to creating value in Namibia for Namibia, has earned itself a proud track record of service delivery within the mining and construction sector.

Dirk van Niekerk, Managing Director of Kraatz says: “We are very excited about this opportunity for Kraatz and are looking forward to grow this into a fully-fledged business unit that not only enhances Kraatz’s offering and creates more choice in the Namibian market, but also ensures that Hitachi clients enjoy the benefits of services offered locally. Kraatz’s existing service offering in particular, welding, machining, mobile line boring and hydraulics is very complementary to the Hitachi offering providing our clients with a one stop shop service offering. The addition of the Hitachi agency will add 20-30 near term job opportunities that can grow significantly in years to come and provides a platform for young Namibians from tertiary educational institutions to get world class on-the-job training.”

Hitachi sells mining and construction equipment and is renowned for excellence in hydraulics, manufacturing and repairs, within the mining and construction industries.

Published: 22 May 2017

Local Brewers compete against the world

Local Brewers compete against the world The participation of Namibia Breweries Limited’s (NBL) – a subsidiary of the Ohlthaver & List (O&L) Group - micro-brewery, Swakopmund Brewing Company (SBC) in the world’s ‘Best Brew Challenge’ which took place at the Strand Hotel Swakopmund’s Brewer & Butcher Restaurant on Friday, 19 May was a host of utter passion with brewers Roan Myburgh and Ronn Rittman showcasing a love for the art alongside 124 other brewers across the globe.

SBC is the first and only brewer on the African continent that participate in the Best Brew Challenge - the World's Largest Simultaneous Collaborative Brew with brewers from all corners of the world that participate in the competition that judges strictly on the quality of the products entered.

Initiated and hosted by the BESTMALZ® AG in Heidelberg Germany (www.bestmalz.de), NBL Head Brewer, Christian Müller regards this as an opportunity for NBL, and SBC in particular to make its mark on the international craft beer market. Müller: “Winning this competition will be the cherry on the cake, but ultimately participation in this internationally renowned competition for craft brewers will boost both the status and quality credentials of NBL, the Swakopmund Brewing Company as well as Namibia as a country. Winning is not the most important to us at this stage. The opportunity to measure our craft beer brewing standard against the best in the world, holds more meaning to us on this venture. I am extremely proud of NBL Brewers, Roan and Ronn who showcased absolute passion and love for what they do. They have once again proven why both of them as brewers have a great future in the industry.”

All participating brewers across the globe brewed simultaneously on the same day, all participants even started at the same hour (14:00h CEST = 13:00h Namibian Time). Final products are sent to Bestmalz® Malthouse for judging on the 10th of July. An international jury of beer sommeliers will do the taste judging, and the brewers of the best rated beer wins a trip for two people to Heidelberg, while the winning beer will be presented at drinktec 2017 in Munich.

Myburgh has been brewing for the past 8 years. He received training at NBL in Windhoek from 2009 until 2011 and concluded his apprenticeship in Germany by attending vocational school in Ulm and obtaining the IHK (Chamber of Industry and Commerce) certificate in Brewing and Malting in 2012. His current position is Junior Brewing Technologist and New Product Developer at NBL. Myburgh: “It was absolute fun! I was very excited to be in control of this challenge together with my colleague Ronn. And it turned out to be as fun and exciting as I anticipated for it to be.”

Rittman is from Rehoboth and started off as a Brewing Apprentice together with Myburgh at NBL in 2009 and has since grown to become a respected brewer among his peers, and was trained alongside Myburgh at Ferdinand von Steinbeiss vocational School in Ulm, Germany. Rittman: “I love what I do and enjoy every minute spent brewing. Taking part in this challenge, I was a bit nervous, but with the support of my mentor and leader, NBL Head Brewer, Christian Muller I was confident and happy to be a part of this experience.”

O&L Group Director: Human Capital, Berthold Mukuahima stressed exposure such as the Best Brew Challenge as part of the group’s commitment to one of its values “We Grow People”. Mukuahima: “At O&L we are committed to providing our people with all possible opportunities to grow and always become better and masters in their fields of expertise. The Best Brew Challenge is one of those platforms that is perfect, for especially our young brewers to be exposed to challenge themselves against the best in the world.”

All participating brewers received the same brewing instructions and guidelines from BESTMALZ® (www.bestbrewchallenge.com/about-bbc-2017) which included: to use BESTMALZ® products at a minimum of 49%. The Original gravity should not exceed 15°Plato, and to brew according to the German Purity Law. Motto: No limits. Official judging of all entries will take place on 10 June this year.
Published: 15 May 2017

NBL celebrates another successful DRINKiQ session

NBL celebrates another successful DRINKiQ session

An additional 169 Namibians underwent the DRINKiQ Training Program by Namibia Breweries Limited (NBL) – a subsidiary of the Ohlthaver & List (O&L) Group - last week in the south of the country. Employees from NAMDEB’s Elizabeth Bay Mine in Lüderitz, as well as members of the Lüderitz community were empowered with facts about alcohol and the dangers of alcohol abuse.

Since its inception in 2009, NBL’s DRINKiQ Training Program has provided more than 4500 Namibians with a better understanding of the short- and long-term effects of alcohol abuse, which thus empowers them to make smart decisions when it comes to the use of alcohol.

O&L Group Corporate Social Investment (CSI) Coordinator, Venessa Mwiya: “For the past three months we have trained approximately 600 Namibians under this powerful program that has over the years enriched participants’ knowledge on the mental, psychological and physical risks involved when abusing alcohol, and provides them with the necessary IQ to understand the repercussions of alcohol abuse.”

Mwiya emphasized that the DRINKiQ Program is not only for employees of NBL or the O&L Group, but is open to the general public who wishes to enrich their knowledge on the use of alcohol and how to consume it on a more responsible level. The DRINKiQ Program is part of NBL’s contribution to curb the excessive use of alcohol, addressing government’s concern of alcohol abuse.

Mwiya: “While this program has more focus on internal stakeholders for 2017, we gladly take up opportunities externally, to invest in the future well-being of the Namibian society, through our commitment to the group purpose of ‘Creating a future, enhancing life’ for all Namibians. With the daily repercussions of alcohol abuse seen in our society, the DRINKiQ Program has the potential to be a powerful tool in the fight against alcohol abuse as it addresses the power of behavioral change. When we change our behavior towards alcohol and how we consume it, it is already a great start to curbing societal concerns.”

Within the O&L Group alone, the DRINKiQ Program has so far in 2017 been conducted at Namibia Dairies’ headquarters in Windhoek; NBL headquarters in Windhoek; Strand Hotel Swakopmund; Hangana Seafood; Pick n Pay (PnP); NBL, and Namibia Dairies at the coast.

Published: 11 May 2017

Swakopmund Brewing Company participates in world Best Brew Challenge

Swakopmund Brewing Company participates in world Best Brew Challenge Namibia Breweries Limited (NBL) – a subsidiary of the Ohlthaver & List (O&L) Group - is proud to announce that on the 19th of May 2017, its micro-brewery ‘Swakopmund Brewing Company’ (SBC) situated at the Strand Hotel Swakopmund will be the first and only brewer on the African continent to take part in the international annual ‘Best Brew Challenge’.

The Best Brew Challenge is the World's Largest Simultaneous Collaborative Brew with brewers from all corners of the world that participate in the competition that judges strictly on the quality of the products entered.

Initiated and hosted by the BESTMALZ Malthouse in Kreimbach, Germany, NBL Head Brewer, Christian Müller regards this as an opportunity for NBL, and SBC in particular to make its mark on the international craft beer market. Müller: “Participation in an internationally renowned competition for craft brewers will boost both the status and quality credentials of NBL, the Swakopmund Brewing Company as well as Namibia as a country. Whether we win this challenge or not, is not the most important to us at this stage. The opportunity to measure our craft beer brewing standard against the best in the world, holds more meaning to us on this venture. Our brewers will push their limits on Friday, 19 May when we brew the beer which we will enter into the challenge. Such a challenge will allow us to view ourselves within the ‘snapshot’ it provides and indicate to us where we are now, it gives a concrete base/result that we can test ourselves against in the future. And lastly – it is a whole lot of fun!”

All participating brewers across the globe will brew simultaneously on the same day (19 May) after which their products will be sent to the Bestmalz Malthouse for judging on the 10th of July. An international jury of beer sommeliers will do the taste judging, and the brewers of the best rated beer wins a trip for two people to Heidelberg, while the winning beer will be presented at drinktec 2017 in Munich.

NBL Global Marketing Manager, Rene Duffy: “While our beers have already received numerous international awards for quality which of course stems from NBL’s unwavering commitment to the Reinheitsgebot; the 500 year old Beer Purity Law, we are excited and also anxious to know how well our SBC craft beers measure up against other craft brewers in the world. We trust that this platform will amplify interest in the growing craft beer segment and inspire more consumers to come and experience the diverse beer styles available exclusively at Namibia’s first micro-brewery; the Brewer and Butcher at the Strand Hotel”.