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Just Batteries company profile
23 October 2013, News

Just Batteries CC was incorporated by John Chapman, an electrical engineer who had previously been employed by Uniross for almost 17 years. Upon Uniross’s decision to exit the industrial battery market in 2003, Chapman saw a gap in the market which led to him founding Just Batteries.

Just Batteries CC was incorporated by John Chapman, an electrical engineer who had previously been employed by Uniross for almost 17 years. Upon Uniross’s decision to exit the industrial battery market in 2003, Chapman saw a gap in the market which led to him founding Just Batteries.

Technical director Malcolm Southern conducting cycle testing.
Technical director Malcolm Southern conducting cycle testing.

Soon after the incorporation of Just Batteries, Malcolm Southern, who was technical director and part shareholder at Uniross for roughly 27 years, joined the company. This relationship and sharing of expertise has been a key factor attributing to Just Batteries emerging, in its own estimation, as the market leader in the South African industrial battery market.

The company began its manufacturing activities in a single room at its current premises, on property that was mostly occupied by another company that shared the premises. As Just Batteries expanded, it slowly began to take over other available space on the property.

In 2007 the company performed a major renovation and expansion of its facility, which saw factory space expanded by three times. In 2009 it again extended its factory space and today boasts a 2000 square metre factory floor. The company began with three members of staff and has grown to a current staff complement of 40, comprising of electrical and electronic engineers, mechanical engineers, operators and assemblers.

In 2012 Just Batteries became an ISO9001 certified production facility by achieving its certification in battery manufacture and associated electronics. The company now has a fully-fledged quality department consisting of four personnel whose sole function is to ensure that the products manufactured meet the required standards.

Just Batteries relies mostly on its well-trained sales team to market the company and its products. According to national sales manager, Gary Chapman, there is no replacement for face-to-face contact and, while the company does make use of other marketing mechanisms, a good old-fashioned visit by a salesperson still achieves the best results for the company.

The company offers a complete solution for portable energy requirements, and specialises in getting involved with a product from idea inception all the way through to manufacture. Its engineering department, along with the sales team, can assess a product’s requirements by gaining insight into the application, the environment in which the product will be expected to perform and the electrical requirements, and design a solution to fit.

Just Batteries offers a full turnkey solution not only for batteries but also charging solutions for all available chemistries. It can design custom multi-way chargers that enable the charging of up to a hundred batteries at a time.

The company’s reputation for high-quality products led to its appointment in 2005 as the sole distributor for SAFT Batteries portable division. The company is also authorised to carry out all technical requirements on the SAFT products that it represents.

Just Batteries has designed custom battery status indicators which it now builds into a number of its batteries. According to Gary Chapman, what makes these units special is that, because the intellectual property belongs to the company, it has been able to tweak the design to work on its non-rechargeable batteries as well as its rechargeable products.

In 2009 the company, through its electronic division, decided to enter the emergency lighting market. It had previously been a major supplier of batteries to this market but it took the decision to develop its own emergency lighting switchgear, which is now produced at its premises.

Just Batteries supplies a full range of emergency inverter gear, and claims the honour of being the first company in South Africa to develop an inverter that is capable of running a compact fluorescent globe. Gary Chapman is confident that a number of new innovations about to be launched by the company will change the face of emergency lighting.

In closing, Gary Chapman summed up the company’s ethos by saying “Just Batteries has built its reputation based on a few basic fundamentals that the company holds dear. These can be summarised as building and nurturing relationships with our customers, and developing an absolute understanding of our customers’ products, problems and requirements.

“We are committed to providing benchmark levels of expertise and service and to practising the highest levels of ethics. The company sees itself remaining the number one choice in portable power solutions and also intends to achieve a 50% market share in the emergency lighting switchgear market over the next two years. The company’s primary focus is to deliver a superior, reliable solution to its customers.”

Supplied By: Just Batteries
Tel: +27 11 023 8846
Fax: +27 11 421 7986
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