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ROVD was established in 1964 as a small general engineering company in South Africa. Today, ROVD is a cutting-edge leader in industrial automation and mechatronic engineering.


ROVD was established in 1964 as a small general engineering company in South Africa. In the early days, we were primarily focused on contract works, but many developments over the next couple decades ultimately changed the company’s course of direction.

The first breakthrough came in 1967, when a well-known local salt company approached ROVD to redesign a Salt Harvester they had imported. We then began developing technology in this field. While ROVD continued to focus on this arena for many years, Salt took something of a backseat for some time as our focus shifted to the automotive industry.

This shift came in 1988, when ROVD started producing a conveying system for Volkswagen in Uitenhage, South Africa. From then on, we were closely aligned to the automotive industry and no longer focused solely on general engineering.

South Africa’s automotive industry is small and close knit. Based on the work undertaken for Volkswagen, it wasn’t long before ROVD began working for other local automotive manufacturers. In particular, we became well-known for producing conveying systems that matched the quality of European Manufacturers.

When ROVD began developing conveyor systems, we benchmarked our products against the best European Manufacturers, who would often be the first to introduce new technologies. The Japanese practice of building long lasting, robust systems also served as a source of inspiration. Both design philosophies have played a significant role in shaping our approach to providing industrial automation solutions.

As ROVD’s reputation as a reputable solution based engineering supplier within the motor industry began to grow, we were fortunate to acquire several lucrative contracts. In the early ’90s, Mercedes Benz began using ROVD’s services and by the late ’90s, BMW was also taking advantage of the services and products we could offer locally.

ROVD commissioned its first MK6 Salt Harvester in March 1999. Over the years, the company has designed and manufactured 60, 160, 200, 350, 500 and 600 ton-per-hour (TPH) units.

Today, thanks to its capabilities to design advanced technologies, ROVD manufactures modern Salt Harvester that are quite different from those it initially developed. Our customers have a choice of highly efficient turbo-charged, twin turbo and/or super-charged diesel engines to cope with high altitude and high ambient temperatures common with the salt industry. The harvesters, as with most mobile machinery, are solely hydrostatically driven with the aid of oil coolers in high ambient temperature environments.

Programmable Logic Controllers (PLC) are available on certain models or are developed according to customer requirement. These controllers allow for automated start-up, shut down and other routine procedures.

The Salt Industry has presented many bulk handling challenges over the years. The largest unit manufactured to-date has a direct take-off in excess of 1000 TPH. ROVD has, as a result, developed and manufactured a range of equipment to meet these challenges. ROVD predominantly produces Salt Harvesters for export.

Another proud moment took place in 2004 when Toyota became a client, and is still a client to this day. Over the years, ROVD has also completed large projects for Ford, Nissan and GM, previously Delta.

Thanks to our close relationship with several OEMs, ROVD saw a gap in the market as there was a lack of standardised, cost-effective electrical systems for the automotive industry. Our team therefore developed a system to meet this need, a system which ROVD is now renowned for.

Today, ROVD’s range of products for the Automotive Industry include production line transfer systems such as roller-beds, conveyors and transfer shuttles and elevators.

In particular, ROVD has developed and improved certain standard facilities over the years in order to fulfil customer requirement. Examples include transfer shuttles, double scissors lifts, 1800 turntables, end-pivot roller-beds, four-post hoists and heavy-duty side lift elevators.

Many joint improvement projects have been set up to improve the specifications the customer has come to expect of the machines we build.

The company services the agricultural sector through the production of wool presses, screw conveyors and simple bulk handling conveyors.

Today, ROVD is a cutting-edge leader in industrial automation and mechatronic engineering. We firmly base our roots in the design and manufacture of purpose-built machinery for the automotive, rail and maritime industries in South Africa and the United States of America.

ROVD can supply, install and commission large projects on any continent, thereby ensuring the continuity of our customer’s needs, manufacturing philosophies and specific standards. We also continue to focus on tried and tested products developed to date, thereby offering standardised products and solutions.


In the early days, we were primarily focussed on contract works,  but many developments over the next couple of decades ultimately changed the company’s course of direction.

ROVD Group is committed to providing a safe and healthy workplace for all our workers, customers, clients, patrons, guests and visitors.To ensure we have a safe and healthy workplace, ROVD Group has developed the following COVID-19 Preparedness Plan in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.