Electronic product development and manufacturing solutions and services

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The South African Electrotechnical Export Council (SAEEC), together with the Department of Trade and Industry's (the DTI's) Electrotechnical Unit, conducted a research study for electronic product development and manufacturing solutions and services. The main purpose of this project was to develop a strategy and a programme for the SAEEC, and the DTI based on primary and secondary research to:

1. Accelerate export growth of South African companies in electronic product development;
2. Development of the sector, and align industry development initiatives to further develop and broaden the sector.

Main objective

The specific objectives of the project were:

1. To provide research and analysis that will underpin the development of an export strategy for the electronics sub-sector that will include the following aspects:

Broad comparison of South Africa's capabilities against selected companies and countries to:

* Improve competitiveness.
* Identifying new opportunities, including buyers and markets.
* Significantly increase the number of opportunities beyond what each firm could achieve individually.
* Increase the success rate of South African companies.
* Identify opportunities for new entrants along the value chain, particularly BEE and SME players.

2. To identify constraints to the growth of the electronics sub-sector, thereby enabling the DTI to align export growth and industry development including:

* Identifying where government can provide support to facilitate growth of this sub-sector in terms of exports, transformation and jobs.
* Identify skills gaps and training requirements.
* Industry and firm support requirements to grow the sub-sector.
* Identify areas for new government incentives and support programmes.

3. Develop a marketing framework which will be implemented by the SAEEC to grow exports and broaden the base of exporters in this sub-sector.

The project was awarded to Whitehouse & Associates. A steering committee was formed comprising of Eileen Leopold, CEO SAEEC, Member Companies, and Thulani Mpetsheni of the DTI to provide project management and advisory support.

Definitions and activities of focus

This project focused specifically on following three key functions of the electronics value chain:

1. Design and development (either own or contract)
2. Original design manufacturer (ODM)
3. Electronics manufacturing services (EMS)

The functions were defined as follows:

1. Design and development: This is a pure service where a company will design and develop a product either for their own manufacture or under contract for another company.
2. Original design manufacturer: An ODM is similar to a contract manufacturer but uses its own designs and intellectual property (IP).
3. Electronics manufacturing services: Contract manufacturers in the electronics field that not only make products but offer assistance with the design and the supply chain generally call themselves electronics manufacturing services (EMS).

A further important definition being that of a contract manufacturer, which was defined as a manufacture of products on behalf of another company. Contract manufacturers provide these services to several companies based on their own or customers' designs, formulas or specifications.

The SAEEC and the DTI will host a presentation to highlight the key findings of the research.

Date: Wednesday, 23 Feb 2011
Time: 09h00 - 13h00
Venue: Midrand Conference Centre
RSVP: By 18 February
To Naledi Tshukudu
Tel. 011 315 0209

Registration: 09h00 - 09h30
Welcome and introduction: 09h30 - 09h45, Eileen Leopold: CEO SAEEC
Research summary and recommendations: 09h45 - 12h30
* Whitehouse and Associates
* Terms of reference
* Market opportunities
* Key regions, sectors and partners
* Lessons from successful exporting companies
* Constraints to growth and exports
* Government and industry support requirements
* Value proposition and marketing messages

Export marketing initiatives: 12h30-13h00: Eileen Leopold, SAEEC

Editorial contacts
SavantNaledi Tshukudu(011) 315
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