East Lon­don gets R1bn smart fac­tory

Go! & Express - - GO! IN KING - SIPHOKAZI VUSO

A FAC­TORY worth R1-bil­lion, which will cre­ate jobs and innovative tech­nol­ogy, was launched at the East Lon­don In­dus­trial De­vel­op­ment Zone’ on Tues­day.

The 28 000m² state-of-the-art smart fac­tory re­sides within a cus­toms con­trolled area , a short five min­utes from the East Lon­don Air­port and 10 min­utes from the port.

Yekani Group chief ex­ec­u­tive Dr Siphiwe Cele tied the launch to Youth Month, say­ing the com­pany was reaf­firm­ing its com­mit­ment to in­vest­ing in the youth.

Yekani Man­u­fac­tur­ing (Pty) Ltd is a 100% black-owned in­for­ma­tion and com­mu­ni­ca­tions tech­nol­ogy com­pany.

“Our new home is a strong­hold, where young peo­ple’s bril­liance will be nur­tured with an ul­ti­mate ob­jec­tive of form­ing a pool of entrepreneurs within this group,” Cele said.

“We want the world to know that Africans are ca­pa­ble of pi­o­neer­ing new tech­nol­ogy and at Yekani, we [be­lieve] that our strength lies within our big­gest as­set – our peo­ple,” he said.

The tech­nol­ogy fa­cil­ity, which is es­ti­mated at cre­at­ing 1000 jobs, is also aimed at im­prov­ing the qual­ity of ed­u­ca­tion through­out South Africa.

Cele said Yekani Tech­nol­ogy, with the help of its sis­ter com­pany Yekani Man­u­fac­tur­ing, man­u­fac­tures and sup­plies de­vices pur­pose built for ed­u­ca­tion.

It is aimed at en­hanc­ing the 21st cen­tury class­room ex­pe­ri­ence for both teach­ers and stu­dents to im­prove the stan­dard of ed­u­ca­tion.

“Two years ago, the depart­ment of ed­u­ca­tion in Gaut­eng in­tro­duced a five-year pa­per­less e-learn­ing class­room ini­tia­tive in town­ship schools and those with a 100% pass rate in last year's ma­tric fi­nals re­ceived brand new tablets.

“The depart­ment led by the MEC Panyaza Le­sufi en­tered into a part­ner­ship with one of Yekani’s lo­cal re­sellers to pro­vide the tablets to the se­lected town­ship-based schools,” Cele said.

“We are happy to have played our part in this ed­u­ca­tion ini­tia­tive – a project aimed at im­prov­ing learn­ing for stu­dents by pro­vid­ing dig­i­tal text­books and past pa­pers.

“We be­lieve that this new home will al­low us to show­case our ca­pa­bil­ity, flex­i­bil­ity, ex­per­tise and qual­ity as well as con­tri­bu­tion to the de­vel­op­ment of the man­u­fac­tur­ing in­dus­try, not only in the coun­try but also in the African con­ti­nent,” Cele said.

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