Fortescue Metals Group has awarded Aboriginal-owned business Redspear Safety a three-year contract to supply lifting and rigging equipment across all of its operations.
Redspear owner and managing director Barry McGuire said Fortescue was the first of the major mining companies to give them an opportunity to deliver these services.
“This has given us confidence that we are able to compete with some of the largest names in lifting and rigging in Australia and beyond,” he said.
The Western Australian business also has the opportunity to apply for 14-day payment terms, under a new business initiative Fortescue announced this month to ease pressure on Aboriginal and Pilbara-based suppliers.
McGuire added that the reduced payment terms allows the company to invest more into its business.
Fortescue CEO Nev Power said initiatives such as the new payment terms and the company’s Billion Opportunities program provide small businesses cash flow management solutions and helps them increase their capabilities.
“By facilitating strong businesses we are creating more jobs and development opportunities for Aboriginal Australians, which are in turn changing lives and helping to build stronger communities,” Power said.
The Billion Opportunities program has awarded 240 contracts and sub-contracts worth $1.85 billion to 103 Aboriginal businesses and joint ventures since it began in 2011.