Pam du Plessis, the managing director at the helm of
Invincible Valves, is an enterprising woman with global
awards under her belt to prove it. She talks to Emma
Dawson about her company’s success, its culture and
the positive impact they have on young people’s lives.
Established in 1982 by Rob Macpherson and Paul Kirchmann, Invincible
Valves began operating as a valve reconditioning and rubber lining
business. From inception, the company has grown from strength to strength
and is now one of the top valve distributors, reconditioners and rubber
liners for the South African market. ‘We have a broad array of new valves
that we distribute globally, as well as its own brand, the Inval® range,’
Over the last few years, to keep pace with changing technology, industrial
advancements, and customer demands, Invincible Valves has restructured
and diversified to other industries. ‘Since the business was taken over by new
management in 2013, each department has been reshaped into a simple
team structure with a team leader and no more than five others in a team.
We’ve also upgraded our IT infrastructure to ensure more efficiency when
responding to customers’ needs. This also provides more accurate feedback,
and the ability to speed up processes by submitting documents with ease,’ Pam
Products and markets
Invincible Valves’ primary markets include the global mining industry, as well as
power generation, paper and pulp, water and sewerage, fisheries, and many
The company supplies a full range of imported and locally-manufactured lowpressure
valves with all the control mechanisms they required. ‘We also offer a
reconditioning service for these valves and fittings and have an in-house rubber
lining facility for valves, pipes and fittings. This service is used by many of the
country’s major valve manufacturers,’ Pam adds.
‘It’s Invincible Valves’ simple structure that I believe makes it easier to work
within the parameters of the business,’ explains Pam. ‘This philosophy is also
rolled out to our stakeholders, which means that our customers enjoy our flexibility
and commitment to service excellence too. ‘We also offer a number of ancillary
services that give customers the one-stop-shop deal they’ve come to expect from
Valves are an essential part of our daily lives – just consider the plumbing
in homes and offices as an example. Each time you turn on a tap, you’re
operating a valve that controls the waterflow and enables you to open, close
or control the speed of the flow. On the industrial side, valves are of utmost
importance for the operations of most industrial processes that use oil, water
and or gas.
‘At any given time, Invincible Valves has 90 days of stock on the floor. Our
ordering process works on minimum stock levels and is replenished monthly.
We have a team of technical sales personnel in the office and on the road
who have combined industry experience of more than 100 years. We also
have excellent working relationships and access to our principles, which
enables us to offer the best advice for any query,’ Pam comments.
To service the African market, Invincible Valves has agents located throughout
At the helm
Invincible Valves operates under a new-age management system with team
leaders who have each been promoted from within the organisation. ‘With just
five employees on each team, these leaders can forge meaningful relationships
with their team members and easily identify training needs or social issues, for
example. Each team leader reports to me, and we have an open-door policy
and family-value system,’ Pam insists.