Kap working on building regenerative business practices

KAP INDUSTRIAL chief executive Gary Chaplin said that efforts had been made at Unitrans to drive technology in monitoring driver behaviour.

KAP INDUSTRIAL chief executive Gary Chaplin said that efforts had been made at Unitrans to drive technology in monitoring driver behaviour.

Published Sep 26, 2022


JSE listed Kap, which owns the retail brands Unitrans, Restonic, Safripol, Feltex, PG Bison and DriveRisk, has launched a campaign called “Being the change“, which details its “commitment (to) innovation, regenerative business practices and going beyond sustainability”.

Among the many things that the Covid-19 pandemic has fuelled, conscious consumerism is one of the biggest, and a large number of companies have responded by announcing various initiatives around environment sustainability, focus on the needs of society and adequate governance across the public and private sectors (also known as ESG).

And Kap is no different.

CEO Gary Chaplin explains: “We are going to ensure our philosophy is imbued into every division of our company in a way that allows each company to grow and innovate independently. We are focused on making a positive impact across all our stakeholders, from staff, to communities, to investors, to the environment, because a positive impact in any of these areas results in a positive impact on an economic level for our companies. In short, we want to show that doing good also means good returns.”

He says Safripol, which produces key ingredients used in plastics and a company part of Kap, was a very big transaction for them. “It was the biggest transaction because it was a leading producer of polymer plastic components,” he says. “But public perception around banning single-use plastics was rife, and that was obviously a great concern with us,”

Chaplin added: “So we embarked on a process called plastic responsibly in which we had to really start educating people around plastics and the many benefits around it, and emphasise the irresponsible use of plastics when poorly managed.

Furthermore, he said, the efforts made in its Unitrans business transporter of fuel), especially using technology, is that “one element of that is a business called Drive risk, which effectively uses video technology and facial recognition technology and artificial intelligence to identify and manage driver behaviour. So, effectively what it is in simple terms is we have a camera in the vehicle and plus two or three other devices, which focus inward on the curve and focus outward an what these pieces of equipment do is that we detect a driver behaviour, whether, he is smoking, drinking or looking out the window. And it both alerts the driver and it also sends a video clip into the cloud at head office. That gets analysed and it comes back to us, and we can advise them appropriately. “

When it comes to the term ESG, Chaplin said Kap tries to integrate ESG into its overall strategy to make it visible and put it into perspective.

What does the future hold for Kap about to be rebranded as Kap Holdings? Chaplin says there is loads of opportunity.

“ So, we have potential acquisition opportunities. We have potential partnership opportunities, and we’ve got a lot of organic expansion opportunities.

“I think we did exceptionally well in a tough economic environment for a while. But the nature of our model is that the environment actually suits our stakeholder. The type environment is where the business model thrives, where we are leaders in sectors that we operate.

“And we’ve invested significantly over time in terms of technology process, people products, consumer demand creation, and I think that’s when it really comes to lots of exciting plans. I think we’re gonna have a good story to tell.”