August 4th, 2010, 08:28 PM
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Samsung to open assembly plant in Ethiopia
Samsung Electronics the global leader in digital media and digital convergence technologies, founded in South Korea 41 years ago, is going to set up an assembly plant in Ethiopia for refrigerators and home appliances.
George Ferreira Chief Operating Officer (COO) of Samsung Africa told Capital that his company is doing a feasibility study to set up an assembly plant for home appliances in the country, which will be the fifth plant in Africa for Samsung.
The COO said that Samsung has continued to innovate, reaching out across the globe to identify and develop key pockets of growth in Africa.
At the Samsung Africa Forum held in Johannesburg, South Africa, where Samsung showcases the latest innovations throughout all of its product categories, from audio visual and home appliances, to mobile handsets, digital cameras and notebooks, the COO said that Samsung will also open brand shops across Ethiopia to penetrate the untapped market.
At the forum Samsung also revealed its first 3D television which doesn’t require special glasses. The company also says their TV can also be used as a white board for education.
Another product, the Samsung Galaxy S, a new class of smartphone is expected to be one of the biggest technological advances in the industry. The forum, comprised of the media, customers, distributors and top Samsung executives and government officials, aims to promote co-operation, innovation and the exchange of new ideas in technology.
Outlining the company’s roadmap for growth in Africa, Mr. KK Park, head of Samsung Electronics African Headquarters, said:
“With 980 million people, 15 percent of the world’s population lives in Africa, but the region produces only 2.6 percent of global GDP. In our view, that growth potential is an enormous opportunity to do business and increase our market share in the continent.”
“In 2010, we are focusing in on Africa’s top 10 economies, which together generate 79 percent of the region’s wealth and have almost 47 percent of the population. Our key focus continues to be on countries with large and growing populations, such as South Africa, Nigeria, Kenya and Sudan,” Mr. Park said.
Mensuir Abubakar Manager and owner of Garad Plc sole distributor of Samsung electronics told Capital that his company is doing a feasibility study to set up the assembly plant in collaboration with Samsung in the country. Mensuir was also the guest of honour at the opening of the forum held in South Africa for being the sole distributor of Samsung for the last 13 years.
Tadewos Awol Samsung country manager told Capital that Ethiopia is a strategic place to set up a plant. He added that Samsung is currently the African market share leader in the broad consumer electronics category, including being the No. 1 brand for TV’s, SBS Refrigerators.
Plans are underway to achieve leadership in other categories, including mobile phones, washing machines and air conditioners, through Samsung’s innovative product lineup, enhancing in-country marketing, strengthening distributor infrastructure, as well as tightening and improving supply chain management, he said.
Showing its strong commitment to the region, Samsung continues to expand its in-market presence with subsidiaries and branch offices, as well as the appointment of 12 senior country managers. Samsung currently employs 242 local staff across five subsidiaries and offices in Africa.