Home appliance manufacturer Defy on Wednesday unveiled its regional experience centre, at its Midrand facility, to showcase its latest innovations. The centre also includes a museum documenting the progress the company has made since 1933.
According to Defy regional marketing director Rajan Gungiah, the centre intends to give both retailers and consumers “an experience” of Defy’s latest technologies.
Crafted from an understanding of the company’s expansion needs, the centre was built with both a distribution point of view and consumer perspective in mind and will assist Defy in gearing up for the next decade by adding a “world class distribution centre”, he told Engineering News Online.
Consumers and retailers are able to view Defy’s new laundry technology, called Steamcure, which was also unveiled on Wednesday. Steamcure will assist customers with intensive cleaning applications.
Among new dishwasher technology, the centre’s showroom also has Defy’s corner-washer system on display, which is mainly used for intensive cleaning.
In terms of cooling technology for use in fridges and freezers, Defy’s new technology, called ‘NeoCool’ was also on display, and is said to keep food fresher for longer.
In June, the company will showcase its ‘thermal fan plus’ technology, which will assist with smoother and even cooking processes using Defy ovens, allowing for a more succulent texture.
During the opening event, which was officiated by Arçelik Global CFO Polat Sen - Arçelik bought Defy in 2011 – and Defy South Africa CEO Evren Albas, sub-Saharan Africa was identified as an area of growth for Defy.
From a product and technology perspective, Gungiah explained that the majority of the products produced in South Africa are exported into sub-Saharan Africa, where Defy has expanded to 34 countries.
“South Africa, Durban and Johannesburg have become the hubs to export to these countries. [As a result, Defy] has had to gear up in distribution, product innovation and efficiency projects to ensure that it can effectively compete in the African region,” he elaborated.
Looking ahead, Gungiah highlighted that the company intends to invest another R1-billion in expanding its South African facilities. Within this plan, the most significant investment will come with the construction of Defy’s new 100 000 m2 distribution centre, in Danskraal, in KwaZulu-Natal.
Product and technological investments remain ongoing, he adds, noting that a future major investment could be made in its front-loading washing machine portfolio.