Sector & Value Chain Analysis

August 5, 2020

The KwaZulu-Natal Film Commission (KZNFC) commissioned Lumec to undertake research on filming as an economic catalyst at a municipal level (full report can be found here). The Ugu District Municipality (UDM) was selected as a case study to identify and quantify the benefits that have accrued due to filming that has occurred within the Municipality between 2010 and 2020, and determine whether filming can be an economic catalyst at a municipal level. The study utilised both primary and secondary research methodologies, including desktop research, stakeholder interviews, and surveys with producers, film suppliers and local enterprises.

During the research, over 60 productions were identified that have been shot within the Ugu District since 2010, including documentaries, events, feature films, short films, corporate promotional videos, reality shows, TV commercials and web-series. A number of large Hollywood features have been shot in the region, namely, Blue Crush 2, Jungle Book and The Last Face, as well as a popular local reality TV show, uThando Nes’thembu, which generates significant economic activity and is featured on national television. Based on productions identified, it was estimated that an additional R147 million is generated in the economy due to the direct R81 million that was spent by producers of filmed content in the Ugu District. It was also estimated that filming in Ugu contributes approximately 2.5% to the estimated KZN film industry GDP of R340 billion per annum.

The research highlights the major impacts and benefits that film has on municipalities. These are:

  • Film activity generates substantial economic value for municipalities through direct impact on film suppliers (e.g. cast, crew, etc.), indirect impact on the local enterprises such as accommodation facilities, food and catering services, transport, and security, and through induced impact via further spending of the earnings on suppliers and local enterprises.
  • The industry creates employment opportunities directly through production companies and film industry suppliers, while temporary opportunities are also created for freelancers, suppliers such as catering, security and cleaning, and other short-term positions such as extras.
  • The film industry also has an impact on skills development and training, and given that the skills required to operate a camera, set up lighting, edit content, visual effects, for example, are relatively niche, building up experience requires on-the-job training.
  • Film also has the potential to impact positively on tourism directly through business tourism and indirectly through film-induced tourism which is widely researched and indicates that local areas can gain significant economic benefits from film-tourism.
  • A final impact generated by film is additional income for the local municipality through permit fees and other services rendered.

May 6, 2020
Photo by Zaria Wright on Unsplash

The retail sector produces significant wastage in the form of both packaging (particularly plastic, paper and cardboard) and food waste. As such, it has a particularly important role in addressing packaging and food waste in South Africa (SA). Pressure is mounting on both manufacturers and retailers to reduce waste, increase recycling rates, and educate customers to be more environmentally conscious. Reducing food and packaging waste not only has a positive environmental impact but has the potential to create new value chains and employment opportunities to improve the socio-economic condition of many South Africans, and significantly address food security issues.

It is within this context that the Wholesale and Retail Leadership Chair appointed Lumec to conduct a study to identify what is currently being done by the retail sector to reduce wastage and develop guidelines to assist South African retailers to adopt a more sustainable, green approach to wastage. The study includes an international and local good practice policy and retailer initiative review, interviews with industry experts, a survey of retailers and guidelines for retailers to improve green retailing. The study recommends multiple, specific strategies and actions for both retailers and government. Both government and retailer guidelines suggest a waste reduction approach that:

  • Considers the entire product lifecycle,
  • Promotes collaboration,
  • Encourages further research and development, and
  • Enforces monitoring and evaluation in the waste reduction space.

Adoption of the guidelines/recommendations should lead to more effective and expansive green retailing, ultimately impacting on improved food security and job creation within the high-potential waste economy.

The full study can be found here.

November 27, 2019

Cover of the State of Innovation in KZN 2019 reportLumec was appointed by Innovate Durban in both 2019 and 2020 to develop KwaZulu-Natal’s (KZN) first Innovation Publication which shows the state of innovation in KZN. The objective of the publication is to provide stakeholders in the ecosystem, including innovators, investors and government, with up to date information and trends in the innovation space. The publication is a compilation of numerous indicators that are used to measure the level of innovation in the province. Furthermore, the publication showcases innovators from KZN who are at varying stages of development in the innovation pipeline. An additional output from the project was the development of a dashboard which allows stakeholders to interact with the indicators and provides access to videos and interviews of the KZN’s innovators.

The publication measures innovation under the following categories:

  • People relates to the human capital and knowledge generated that enables and accelerates innovation and creativity. Critical skills such as those developed in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) courses are seen as crucial for economic growth and development. Knowledge also measures new ideas in the form of patents, as well as new research produced by researchers and doctoral students. 
  • Investment describes the amount of investment in terms of rand value that is directed towards innovation, research and development in various sectors.
  • Infrastructure measures internet access in KZN in comparison to other provinces in South Africa.
  • Ecosystem relates to the environment within which innovation takes place and includes events and funding instruments. 
  • Lastly, the impact category measures the benefits of innovation across various areas including revenue, employment and economy.

An excerpt from the 2020 State of Innovation in KwaZulu-Natal

The State of Innovation in KwaZulu-Natal report cover 2020

“KZN remains a top performer in the number of enrolments and graduates across the maths, science and engineering fields at secondary schools, TVETs and Universities. UKZN is ranked first in South Africa for the number of PhD graduates and publication outputs. The value of investment increased across all indicators in the year of review. The 40 innovatio

n events and 405 funding instruments relevant to innovators in KZN reflect a strong and growing innovation ecosystem.

Despite growth in these areas, it is concerning that R&D expenditure and venture capital investment still remains significantly lower than in Gauteng and the Western Cape. Furthermore, the number of KZN households that have internet access is below the national average of 64.7%, at 59.4%. Through numerous programmes aimed at providing support and funding to startups, as well as penetrating low-income areas through innovation labs, Innovate Durban aims to make a positive impact on these indicators and hopes to see continued growth in coming years.

Innovate Durban is proud to showcase five new innovators in this edition and encourages innovators to take note of their advice and learn from their experiences. A theme across innovators is the importance of staying dedicated and being willing to devote time and resources to the innovation in order to achieve success”. 

Access the 2019 and 2020 Innovation Publications here.


July 24, 2019

This review of the Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA) shipbuilding and repair lease terms and conditions was conducted for the Aerospace, Maritime and Defence Industries Association of South Africa (AMD). The aim of the study was to present well considered recommendations for lease terms and conditions to grow the shipbuilding and repair industry in South Africa. 

July 24, 2019

Lumec were appointed to undertake an assessment of the impact that the Bridge City Shopping Centre has had on informal trade within the surrounding areas of KwaMashu since its inception.

May 30, 2019

Lumec was part of a team appointed by eThekwini Municipality to develop an industrial revitalisation strategy and implementation plan.  The aim of the study was to develop strategies for three pilot industrial areas, namely, Jacobs, Prospecton and New Germany. 

November 15, 20170

LUMEC was appointed to conduct the Economic and Human Settlements chapters of the KZN State of the Environment Report (2017). The purpose of the report is to describe the pressures on the environment as a result of the economy and current human settlement patterns in KZN. The impact of each pressure was assessed and recommendations were provided.

November 15, 20170

LUMEC was appointed to gather in-depth data and knowledge on audience trends of the South African and KwaZulu-Natal film industry consumer in order to provide recommendations to the KZNFC towards growing film audiences in the Province of KwaZulu-Natal. This research was thereafter translated into an 6 minute animated video with key research findings.

November 15, 20170

LUMEC provided economic development inputs into the Functional Area Plan (FAP) for the Greater Waterfall Corridor in eThekwini, which included an analysis of the demographics, local economic activity and property market.