Saturday, July 4, 2020

BULB WORLD PLANS TO BEAM ACROSS SADC

Local manufacturing company of Light Emitting Diode (LED), Bulb World, aims to cut the country’s high import bill on LED products.

The company aims to be a leading provider in LED lighting solutions in Botswana and the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC).

During the launch of the bulb in Gaborone recently, SPEDU chief executive officer (CEO), Mokubung Mokubung, said the company would capitalise on the fact that it is the only local bulb producer.

The company’s founder and chief executive officer -Ketshaphaone Jacob, said they set up in Selebi Phikwe as a response to a call by government for the need to revitalise the dwindling economy of the town.

“I always wanted to get involved in a project that will positively change lives and make a significant difference, and in turn benefit the nation as well. In my research of impactful solutions I was drawn to renewable energy technologies. Lighting in the aspect of LED technology stood out for me, as lighting is an overlooked aspect in regards to energy savings and carbon footprint reduction, the production processes involved also have a huge potential to create sustainable jobs of the future,” he said.

Further explaining that the lights save energy by 80% on lighting costs and have a production span of up to 50,000 hours and a 36-month guarantee.

When first unveiled, the company explained that there were significant limitations of performance, price, and colour control.

This energy-efficient lighting technology is being utilized in a diverse array of products including standard replacement light bulbs, as well as strip lights, dimmable lights, ceiling lights, high bay lighting, and street lighting.

Jacob stated that the biggest challenge that they have is financing as the business was self-financed.

The other challenge he said has been the acquisition of equipment as the process took a bit of time, as the order was made in 2017 and only arrived in January 2018.

Where the commissioning was done later in April 2018 and the staff went through a lengthy skill transfer process in December 2018.

But The World Bulb says they are thankful for Botswana Investment Trade Centre for facilitating some of the processes, which included sourcing work permits for the company’s technical partners.

When asked by this publication how he overcame those challenges said: “The key thing is persistence and dwelling on the faith that the project will take off eventually, and the reception will be positive. In term of stakeholder assistance, we already have our factory up and running and the first batch of products stock pilled, therefore at this point what we need is uptake from both government and the private sector. The money generated will be reinvested into the business, as I believe that we still have more room to grow the company.”

He said his vision is for the company to be able to grow the presence in throughout the SADC region.

“This will fall in with our goal to be able to grow our staff complement to 200 plus staff members. We have already embarked on plans to get our footprint in neighboring countries such as South Africa and Namibia through product supply or possibly setting up factory. The expansion will see us including various products in our production line such electrical appliances such as cables, adapters etc,” said Jacob.

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Sunday Standard June 28 – 4 July

Digital copy of Sunday Standard issue of June 28 - 4 July, 2020.