Cellucity - Keeping you connected
Cellucity officially began trading in 1994, but its foundations were being laid from as early as 1991 – well before cellular technology had arrived in South Africa. It was in the age of the “pager” or beeper as it was more commonly known as back then. Cellucity CEO Sean Joffe started the business by selling analogue car-phones. It was a “from the boot of your car” business start-up.
In 1994 GSM cellphone networks were finally ready to become operational in South Africa. Very few people saw any potential in this expensive and untested product. But, Sean saw the opportunity and didn’t hesitate to get involved.
Through some keen selling skills of his own, Sean managed to secure a lease for a kiosk at the V&A Waterfront. Why the Waterfront owners gave Cellucity a lease is still a mystery to this day! After all, the business model was pitching a concept of selling network “airtime” on a network of “base stations” that wasn’t yet built – to customers that had no idea what a “mobile phone” was. And, all of this from a small kiosk, based in a “shed”, in the heart of Cape Town’s harbour – an area that, at the time, nobody, thought would become one of South Africa’s premium retail destination.
Cellucity’s Head-Office has recently moved from the V&A Waterfront complex to Cape Town’s historic Bo Kaap suburb, on the foot of Signal Hill and with a view of Cape Town’s famous Table Mountain.
Cellucity Changes the Mobile World
From those humble beginnings, backed by a forward-thinking CEO and an incredible management team, Cellucity were able to record a host of industry “firsts”:
- Cellucity were the first dealership in the world to sell pre-paid SIM cards. You may not be aware but Pre-Paid was a South African invention.
- It was the first retail partner in the world to sell physical pre-paid airtime recharge vouchers. Do you remember those old-school scratch cards?
- We were the first South African dealership to offer virtual airtime vouchers.
- We had one of the first e-commerce websites and the first cellular online store in South Africa.
The heart of any company is the combination and strength of people working for it. Cellucity’s senior management team making up Management, Marketing, Finance, HR and Operations have been together for a combined age of over 150 years. That is an amazing statistic!
Cellucity now operates 32 award-winning retail branches within South Africa but are also involved in other successful, related businesses:
- Vodacom Rentals – offering a mobile phone rental and billing services to business and international travellers.
- b4i.travel – An international prepaid SIM card service for international travellers.
- Cellucity Insurance Replacements – Our mobile phone insurance business, specialising in mobile phone replacements for the South African insurance industry.
- Skunkworx – a successful cellphone accessory brand and import business.
- The Real Repair Company – Cellucity has a majority stake in this Apple, Samsung and Huawei repair business.
- The Real Insurance Cover – Mobile phone insurance cover, repairs and replacements.
- Cellucity Trade-ins – Offer our customers a secure way to dispose of their old, unused or unwanted devices.
- Cellucity.com – Cellucity international startup based in the Republic of Ireland
Cellucity Customer-Centric Approach
Cellucity has been a Vodacom exclusive independent dealer since its inception in 1994. Chris Henschel, company director says “Our focus has always been to provide our customers with innovative and great quality brands, the best service and unparalleled customer assistance and support. This is what sets us apart from other cellular franchises and it shows in our customer feedback”.
Cellucity runs a successful online store, which has seen tremendous growth, especially since the COVID-19 lockdown in South Africa. “We are always on the look-out for the latest in cellular and tech products with our procurement team regularly travelling to international trade shows to handpick the best and exclusive products,” says Sean Joffe. “By using our contract and upgrade pre-approval forms, you can apply online and our team will make sure everything is ready and waiting for you before you arrive. Our book an appointment service is also a great way to bypass a queue.”