The first South African designed and built smartphone and tablet are to be launched within the second half of 2014 by Sekoko Group and CZ Electronics. This follows a landmark deal in which Sekoko, now renamed ‘Mint’, has acquired 75% of the electronics manufacturer.
CZ Electronics was established in 2002 with the purchase of the production assets of the Alcatel factory in Boksburg. The company employs 300 staff, most of which are women.
“We are enormously proud of the first mass-market smartphone and tablet to be designed and built right here in South Africa,” says Sekoko Group chairman Dr. Tim Tebeila.
“Our aim is to provide South Africans with the choice of purchasing a top-quality, world-class product that’s affordable as it’s made in South Africa specifically with South Africans in mind.”
The smartphone and tablet will be produced at the Boksburg manufacturing plant. The company has a capacity of around 280 000 components per hour. It specialises in electronic assemblies for the telecom, defence, utility metering, vehicle tracking and data acquisition industries.
‘’Prior to concluding the deal we explored many other options and are pleased that in Sekoko we have found the right partner,’’ says CZ Electronics COO Rob Bruggeman.
“Designed to the highest specifications and built in accordance with the ISO 9002:2008 standard, we believe our smart phone and tablet will take the market by storm, offering ordinary South Africans a highly competitive alternative to existing products,” he continued.
As a consequence of this acquisition, which changes the nature of the portfolio of Sekoko Group, the company has now redefined its business and brand, renaming itself ‘Mint’.
More details on the products are expected within weeks.