An IDEA Drives a Small Algerian Company to Win Big
In many ways, Algerian entrepreneur Adel Bougdah represents the kind of innovative, outside-the-box thinking that will power the economic dynamism of this North African country into the future.
Last year, this owner of a 10-employee Algiers-based company that maintains and repairs industrial equipment and spare parts, had a vision and an ambition to achieve even more.
That’s why he entered the I.D.E.A. Algeria Supplier Challenge, a competition designed by GE and Sonelgaz to support young Algerian professionals in the industrial space and to identify potential suppliers for GE Algeria Turbines (GEAT). GEAT is a joint venture by the two companies that will be one of the world’s largest manufacturers of GE’s advanced 9F gas turbines, steam turbines, generators, and control systems — all of which are key components of today’s advanced gas-fired power plants.
Today, from six finalists selected earlier this year based on their manufacturing processes; tooling, fixturing, and equipment lists; quality assurance plans and numerical control programs; and on the local content of the process (since one requirements was that the part must be entirely produced in Algeria), Adel was named the Phase 2 winner. He was selected for excellence in manufacturing the stainless steel component, which is part of a fuel nozzle assembly within the larger gas turbine combustion system.
Adel plans to take the 2.021 million Algerian Dinars cash award (just over $20,000 USD), along with the opportunity to work with GE experts and the potential to supply parts for the GEAT facility, to expand his business into high-quality, high-value-added local manufacturing.
Adel was feted at an award ceremony attended by Sonelgaz CEO Noureddine Boutarfa, members of the GEAT board of directors, and GE leadership.
Adel’s story is instructive because in today’s globally competitive environment, winners — whether corporations or countries — will be those that can identify great ideas and well-run, innovative companies, no matter how big or small they are.
In fact, while two of the six finalists in the I.D.E.A. Algeria Supplier Challenge were known to GE through its ALGESCO turbomachinery service center, Adel’s company was not previously a supplier, or otherwise known, to GE or Sonelgaz.
On a local level, the Supplier Challenge has been extremely important in helping GE raise awareness among Algerian companies regarding the many opportunities available to them as part of the local GE supply chain. This in turn will support growth of the local manufacturing base and help raise standards and technical capabilities in the country.
These investments and activities represent just a small part of GE’s long-term commitment to the economy and people of Algeria.