South African Mint

AVEVA software increases operational efficiencies and reporting capabilities for South African Mint through integrated suite of MES and production management applications.

South African Mint

“In my view, the most outstanding features of the Wonderware suite of MES and intelligence solutions we adopted were their ease of use, ease of integration and ease of maintenance.”

– Lungile Binza; CIO, South African Mint Company Ltd.


  • To enhance production and enable material traceability management reporting and business efficiency
  • To optimize inventory control
  • To improve plant availability and overall equipment effectiveness (OEE)
  • To reduce manual reporting and ensure data integrity through formal production accounting


  • The lack of detailed process information made it difficult to assess production information accurately
  • With a host of disparate systems in place, it was difficult to effectively manage processes
  • The existing infrastructure was outdated and could no longer be supported by the original vendor


  • Achieved accurate production and performance reporting
  • Successful implementation of OEE reporting to optimize plant availability and performance
  • Improved inventory optimization
  • Plant floor equipment and processes now integrated with other systems including ERP

AVEVA Plays Key Role in Sweeping Operations Information Management Overhaul at South African Mint Co.

Centurion, Gauteng, South Africa – As the official manufacturer of currency, a country’s minting facility may be its most important asset. The history of coin minting dates back to 7th century BC and has played a significant historical role in the rise and fall of human civilizations. Responsible for minting all coins of the South African rand on behalf of the South African Reserve Bank, the South African Mint is responsible for the crucial task of manufacturing coins and planchets, which are metal disks used to make coins, for both domestic and international markets.

Established in 1941, South African Mint (SA Mint) has prided itself on remaining on the cutting edge of technology in the manufacturing of currency. The company first established automation processes with the use of Wonderware software in 1992, and has remained vigilant on keeping is facilities updated with the latest technologies to ensure it produces the highest quality product for the market.

In recent years, the mint’s production team began experiencing issues with the overall manufacturing information management system, which was installed in 1992. In an effort to address these issues, the team decided to implement a complete overhaul and upgrade of the manufacturing system. Rather than take a chance on unproven technology, the SA Mint chose to implement the latest AVEVA MES and EMI technologies and strategies to achieve its manufacturing objectives.

Manufacturing Quality, Efficiency and Security is at Top of List

The manufacturing process at SA Mint focuses on efficiency, security and tight production accounting, as well as, consistent product quality and dependable automation. The company bears a unique responsibility for delivering consistently high-quality products on time and in large volumes, within an environment that has little or no tolerance for unreliable performance or lack of control.

The production process at SA Mint is complex, with key steps that must be precisely followed to successfully produce a single coin of currency. While the production process itself was running smoothly, the real problem SA Mint faced was the management of information, or mainly the lack of it. This meant that business continuity couldn’t be guaranteed, and reporting was a tedious process which was seldom on time to be effective.

Other concerns were that the existing technology solution couldn’t be integrated with other technologies in use, and was based on outdated operating and database management systems. In addition, the original infrastructure was no longer supported by the original vendor.

"After conducting a comprehensive review of our current system, the management team concluded that a complete overhaul and enhancement of our factory systems was needed in order to meet our objectives. Since the new system would serve as the core, or heart, of the manufacturing process, the team chose to name the project Pelo, which in Sesotho, one of South Africa’s native languages, means heart.”

- Lungile Binza, CIO, South African Mint Company Ltd.

The project team’s goals were twofold: provide critical material traceability and data integrity, as well as offer the flexibility to accommodate changes in the SA Mint manufacturing environment.

"In addition, it was necessary to optimise inventory management by providing information regarding product location and availability. We needed far greater visibility into our key performance indicators (KPIs) to facilitate production flow without compromising control or security. In addition, we needed to manage important Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE) information.”

- Lungile Binza, CIO, South African Mint Company Ltd.

In 2010, project Pelo was in full swing, focusing on SA Mint’s business objectives and process requirements. The firm’s management team selected system integrator Systems Anywhere Coastal to manage the implementation. The company was chosen based on its track record of successfully supplying multi-level, decision-support solutions to companies in the mining and manufacturing industries, as well as, its expertise in rolling out comprehensive software solutions from Wonderware.

"The integrator’s presentation of Wonderware technology solutions showed us their commitment to a future where model-driven MES and workflow management are the norm not the exception, enabling overall customer success.”

- Lungile Binza, CIO, South African Mint Company Ltd.

Ensuring Production of Any Denomination at Any Time

In 2012, Pelo began with the first step focused on addressing the needs of the Plating Area, which included enabling production scheduling of any currency denomination at any time, as well as ensuring on-time delivery of currency through planning methodologies such as theory of constraints (ToC) and lean manufacturing practices. These goals were achieved by delivering critical production information to the management team to identify areas for reducing manufacturing costs which included replacing existing factory and material handling systems, and establishing processes to interface with other systems such as the ERP and material handling operations.

Next on the agenda was optimising the Plating Area’s operational requirements. This included facilitating the flow of material through in-line processing, improving material traceability to ensure off-loading capabilities of WIP (work in process) at both the QA stations and the furnace exit in case breakdown of equipment upstream. This was achieved by having offloading bins stationed permanently on the line. In addition, the team needed to eliminate storage of raw materials on the shop floor, as well as minimise manual movement of the material in and out of the line and across the plating lines.

AVEVA provides actionable production management information To ensure that these objectives were met successfully, SA Mint needed to track production processes, downtimes, shifts and run times, as well as monitor the status of machine and production weights.

"All development had to comply with SA Mint standards and quality criteria. This was especially important in the case of validating manual entries through the 14 InTouch HMI stations, which display production input/output and stoppages in real-time. Our team also developed custom security features for linking to other systems used within the facility.”

- Paul Kotze, Software Engineer, Systems Anywhere Coastal

System Platform was selected at the technology infrastructure for SA Mint’s applications and business intelligence solutions. System Platform provides easier system maintenance and management of standards through its centralised Integrated Development Environment. With System Platform, the team was provided with a collection of integrated common services including visualisation, configuration, deployment, communication, security, data connectivity, data storage and management, people collaboration and many others. This functionality enabled SA Mint to build a single, unified plant model that logically represents processes, physical equipment, industrial systems and even legacy systems, making the design and maintenance of these systems more flexible and efficient.

"By providing a single source for software management, defining deployment and maintenance of standards, as well as the integration of third-party solutions, System Platform delivered on its reputation as a true comprehensive Industrial Operating System.”

- Paul Kotze, Software Engineer, Systems Anywhere Coastal

AVEVA MES software manages the production management information flow for SA Mint by disseminating production management data to the plant floor or production facility. It transforms the company’s production schedule into operational commands within the physical resources and delivers feedback to the business system in real-time.

Standardisation of processes helps ensure more consistent production results. It equips central engineering groups to build process models as base templates to reduce total cost of ownership when MES is deployed across multiple plants or used as an enterprise standard. In addition, the seamless integration of InTouch HMI provided the SA Mint production team with an enhanced Human Machine Interface (HMI) that offers vivid graphics, is easy to use, and provides powerful connectivity with the plant’s other manufacturing technology and equipment.

By improving real-time visibility into SA Mint processes, InTouch HMI greatly improves operator effectiveness and increases control of production activities to simplify and enforce standardisation and change-management. Overall, InTouch HMI brings clarity, consistency and meaning to integrated data collected during SA Mint’s manufacturing process. Advanced workflow capabilities document cross-company processes SA Mint also implemented Workflow Management, which enables it to manage, enforce and document activities cross-company, replacing manual processes and paperwork with electronic workflows. It encompasses everything from routine operations to escalated responses to critical plant operating conditions.

Workflow Management differs from generic BPM software through native integration with System Platform. SA Mint operators can trigger processes directly from control system equipment conditions and process alerts, as well as from work order execution, quality, performance or inventory logistics events in real-time.

"No longer do we have to write multiple scripts in order to check that something has been completed. The application gave us drag-and-drop simplicity so we can easily develop and maintain workflows while referencing various databases and SCADA systems. It also has helped us enforce business rules and standards, as well as traceability of users and production.”

- Lungile Binza, CIO, South African Mint Company Ltd.

Accurate data collection and retrieval critical to effective SA Mint operations Essential production data collected from SA Mint operations is stored for retrieval using Historian, the first, large-volume plant data historian to unite high-speed data acquisition and storage with a traditional relational database management system.

Historian facilitates smarter business decisions by providing a secure, high-performance database that consolidates disparate data sources. It also provides for rapid retrieval of pertinent information used to keep facility processes operating smoothly. In addition, the Enterprise Manufacturing Intelligence (EMI) aspect of the project is not only helping SA Mint collect valuable decision and management support information, but also provides access to the areas of mobile reporting, data analysis and control, as well as cloud computing.

With AVEVA, SA Mint is able to continuously compute the metrics necessary to improve plant, multi-plant or infrastructure performance. It also enables the company to maintain tighter adherence to operating goals with near real-time resolution and data access.

"The combination of these AVEVA solutions enables SA Mint to better understand the impact of planning, execution, staffing and equipment behavior on key strategy variables such as quality, performance, material and energy consumption. These powerful tools enable us to maximise our return on investment as well as offering critical information and insight for more transparency to the actual cost and profitability of our operations.”

- Lungile Binza, CIO, South African Mint Company Ltd.

Synchronising Production Control System and Business Systems Key to Success

The proven effectiveness of modern process control principles on the shop floor using AVEVA software have been applied by SA Mint to drive collaboration between departments, processes and systems by streamlining workflow, enforcing business rules and monitoring the responses of responsible parties.

Embedding workflow software within the production environment enables SA Mint to implement standard operating procedures and corrective actions by structuring repeatable, managed responses to process exceptions across the enterprise. This can be especially effective for processes and workflows that cross organisational boundaries such as operations, maintenance, laboratories and other business domains. Based on the success of this implementation, it’s safe to say that these operating principles will be replicated across the rest of SA Mint in years to come.

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