This report begins by broadly outlining the structure and size of the manufacturing sector in South Africa, as well as the estimated size of ICT spend, and then looks at how technology has disrupted manufacturing, citing both trends in the use of technology in manufacturing, and local and international case studies. The major South African players in manufacturing are then identified.


BMIT analysed this vertical industry with primary and secondary research input from:

  • BMIT databases and other secondary sources
  • Enterprise ICT spending patterns, based on BMIT’s end user surveys and derived models
  • Top-down industry revenue figures tied back to BMIT in-depth reports on IT and telecoms market segments, which in turn are informed by primary research (vendor interviews) and analysis of operator reporting.
  • Qualitative assessment of the manufacturing market in South Africa, based on extensive secondary research.

Research components

Among the key components of the research are:

  • Number of business customers in the manufacturing sector
  • Manufacturing spend on IT and telecoms, and how this will change in future
  • ICT spending levels and growth trends including forecasts to 2023
  • Resultant ICT revenues and forecast growth rates segmented by IT and telecoms, each broken down further by category type and ‘corporate’ and ‘SME and midmarket’ spend.

Note: Excluded from the market revenue numbers are in-house spending on ICT salaries and spending on ICT intermediary consultants such as management consultancy firms, unless these form part of an ICT project


Table of Contents



Manufacturing Overview

  • Manufacturing Industry Dashboard
  • Manufacturing landscape in South Africa
  • GDP in the manufacturing sector
  • GDP growth in the manufacturing sector
  • GDP growth in the manufacturing sector, cont.
  • Employment in manufacturing, and skills levels of workers
  • Employees in manufacturing working in ICT occupations
  • Number of companies in South Africa
  • Corporate, Midmarket and SME segments in SA economy
  • SA businesses by size (number of employees)
  • Number of manufacturing companies
  • Manufacturing sub-sectors with the most potential in South Africa
  • Manufacturing sub-sectors: automotive
  • Manufacturing sub-sectors: agro-processing and textile
  • Manufacturing sub-sectors: metal fabrication and rail equipment
  • Manufacturing sub-sectors: mineral beneficiation and mining equipment
  • Manufacturing sub-sectors: steel
  • Manufacturing sub-sectors: plastics and cosmetics
  • Manufacturing sub-sectors: Electro-technical
  • Manufacturing sub-sectors: Electro-technical – new developments
  • Manufacturing sub-sectors: advanced manufacturing
  • Manufacturing sub-sectors: localisation manufacturing in respect of the REIPPPP

Manufacturing sector trends in South Africa

  • Manufacturing exports from South Africa
  • Manufacturing’s impact on the South African balance of trade
  • Manufacturing production trends in South Africa
  • Manufacturing employment trend in South Africa
  • Trends in South African manufacturing: inhibitors to growth (slide 1 of 4)
  • International trends in manufacturing growth
  • SA manufacturing is concentrating on ‘keeping the lights on’ rather than innovating high-tech solutions
  • International trends in manufacturing: autonomous vehicles

ICT spend in the manufacturing sector

  • IT category segmentation
  • Telecoms category segmentation
  • Manufacturing telecoms spend by category type
  • Manufacturing sector telecoms spend by customer segment
  • Manufacturing sector IT spend by category type
  • Manufacturing sector IT spend by customer segment

Government initiatives in manufacturing

  • Manufacturing industry bodies in South Africa
  • Automotive manufacturing bodies in South Africa
  • Rapid Product Development Association of South Africa (RAPDASA)
  • IPAP – South Africa’s Industrial Policy Action Plan
  • South Africa’s proposed Digital Industrial Policy
  • International government initiatives to promote the 4th industrial revolution in manufacturing
  • South African Presidential Commission on 4IR
  • South African Special Economic Zones (SEZ)
  • Special Economic Zones (SEZ) established in SA
  • Government initiatives in South Africa
  • Government initiatives: local content specifications
  • Government initiatives: NIPP
  • Government initiatives: Industrial funding and Proudly SA
  • Government initiatives: Technology Innovation Agency (TIA)
  • Government initiatives: The Technology Localisation Implementation Unit (TLIU)
  • Government initiatives: BIS
  • Government initiatives in South Africa: APDP Phase 1
  • Government initiatives in South Africa: APDP Phase 2 and the SAAM
  • Gauteng Technical Manufacturing Initiative (GTMI)
  • Further government initiatives in Gauteng province
  • Government initiatives in Gauteng province, cont.
  • Government initiatives: ECD and the furniture manufacturing hub
  • Government initiatives: beneficiation of SA’s mineral resources
  • Government initiatives: incentives
  • Government initiatives: AfCFTA and other free trade agreements
  • Government initiatives: Additive Manufacturing Technology Roadmap

Technological disruption in the manufacturing sector

  • Definitions of manufacturing technology
  • Identifying typical manufacturing technologies
  • Digital manufacturing
  • The impact of digital technology on manufacturing
  • Tech in manufacturing is likely to create jobs, not reduce them
  • Current deployment of digital technology in manufacturing
  • Benefits experienced from the deployment of digital technology in manufacturing
  • Technology megatrends driving transformation of production
  • Short term 4IR adoption predictions
  • Average national readiness for the future of production
  • Top 12 emerging technologies in manufacturing
  • Measure what matters – measuring digital transformation progress and digital risk
  • Emergence of manufacturing models

Smart factories

  • Digitalisation of manufacturing versus the fully digital factory
  • The intelligent factory is characterised by adaptability, efficiency and full digital integration
  • Digital Factories
  • PwC’s Digital Operations Ecosystem
  • PwC’s identification of the success factors in a digital factory
  • Operational planning and scheduling for a smart factory
  • Pilot Purgatory in the take up of digital production
  • “Power by the hour”, or performance-based contracting, in manufacturing
  • Sourcing parts – how technology assists in procurement
  • International trends in manufacturing: IIoT
  • The role of connectivity in lean production, with sensors, data, and analytics
  • The role of connectivity in lean production, with sensors, data, and analytics, cont.
  • Blockchain in manufacturing

Automation and robotics

  • “Lights-out” factories not only reduce labour costs, but electricity too
  • Lights-off manufacturing – robots and cobots
  • Cobots in automotive manufacturing

Additive manufacturing

  • Additive manufacturing technologies
  • Additive manufacturing is reaching maturity already
  • 3D printing or additive manufacturing (AM)
  • Additive manufacturing offers new business opportunities
  • Growth expectations for the global additive manufacturing market
  • Additive manufacturing (AM) in automotive manufacturing
  • Product development using 3D printing in manufacturing R&D
  • Additive manufacturing in SA
  • 3D printing or additive manufacturing (AM) in South Africa

Product development

  • Hypothesis testing – manufacturing R&D
  • Augmented and virtual reality in product development
  • Three dimensional modeling
  • Product development – robotics is automating the physical process of trial-and-error
  • Materials engineering

Local and international case studies

Local case studies
  • South Africa’s digital transformation
  • Silverton Engineering
  • Aeroswift
  • CSIR
  • Nude labelling
  • Electric motor cars in South Africa
International case studies
  • The Global Lighthouse Network
  • Korean smart manufacturing
  • Use of 5G in manufacturing
  • Rold’s Cerro Maggiore factory
  • Korean smart manufacturing using FaaS
  • Foxconn Industrial Internet (Fii)’s Lights-off Factory
  • Creating Revolutions – SME lights-off manufacturing
  • Le Vaudreuil Smart Factory
  • Saudi Aramco Uthmaniyah Gas Plant
  • Car manufacturing of the future
  • Tata Steel uses technology to improve staff capability
  • Fujitsu’s plant in Augsburg, Germany

Company profiles

  • Major players in the manufacturing sector (slide 1 of 2)
  • Automotive companies
  • Automotive groups compared
  • Large groups’ ICT spend compared


Deliverables and format

  • PDF Power Point format
  • Clients are also entitled to a presentation/workshop in Johannesburg (may be combined with other topics at BMIT’s discretion)

Further information

For further information and details on how to subscribe to this research please contact Anita Mathews on 011 540 8000 | 082 466 2317 |