Since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic in South Africa in March 2020, and the subsequent banning of exhibitions and events, Scan Display has shifted its focus to shopfitting, retail displays, brand activations and large format printing.
The company’s initial response to the restrictions on large gatherings was to focus on providing PPE products and building healthcare facilities. Scan Display’s Cape Town team built the infrastructure for Africa’s largest Covid-dedicated temporary hospital at the Cape Town International Convention Centre (CTICC) in May 2020. The team brought suppliers and staff out of lockdown to transform four exhibition halls into four recovery wards with all the necessary oxygen, electricity, plumbing, Internet and nurse calling for each patient.
While Scan Display’s focus has traditionally been exhibition stands and exhibition and event infrastructure, shopfitting and retail displays have always been part of its product offering.
Managing Director, Justin Hawes, explains how the company managed to refocus due to the complete shutdown of exhibitions: “Anyone who has ever worked in the exhibition and events industries will know that problem-solving and flexibility are essential. Fixed deadlines and the dynamic nature of events have taught us to think on our feet and work with a sense of urgency, and these qualities have stood us in good stead during the pandemic.”
This refocusing has been a smooth transition as the company has all the necessary interior design, graphic design, project management, artisanal, electrical and large format printing capabilities in-house. With production facilities in Johannesburg, Durban and Cape Town, Scan Display can work throughout the country.
During the last few months, the company has completed some interesting projects:
Discovery Insurance drive-in centre
Scan Display was contracted by interior architecture group, thinkspace, to build a drive-in fitment centre for car tracking systems in Cape Town’s CBD. Discovery Insurance clients can relax in the inviting space while they wait for a tracking system to be fitted in their car.
Harry Gwala museum exhibition
Scan Display created the Harry Gwala exhibition for the KwaZulu-Natal Department of Arts and Culture at The Old Prison Museum in Pietermaritzburg. The exhibition showcases the life of political activist, Gwala, who would have turned 100 last year.
SA Taxi offices
The company built custom-designed sales offices for SA Taxi at WeBuyCars’ premises in Springfield Park, Durban and Brackenfell, Cape Town. The offices are part of SA Taxi’s collaboration with WeBuyCars, and the project will be rolling out in other centres in South Africa.
South African National Blood Service (SANBS) visitor centre
Custom-designed elements were used to create the Journey of Blood, an interactive display at SANBS’ headquarters at Mount Edgecombe in Durban. The walk-through centre shows visitors what happens at a blood bank, increasing awareness of the importance of blood donation.
Thule activation at sani2c
Scan Display used its transportable stand-in-box, the Modulbox, to create an outdoor hospitality area for Thule in the Underberg at the sani2c cycling stage race. A variety of furniture was included in the hospitality area and lighting was set up in the Modulbox for the evening activation.
Scan Display’s Managing Director, Justin Hawes, believes that with activities like exhibitions and conferences being excluded from companies’ marketing programmes, they are spending in other areas like showrooms and visitor centres.
The ease with which Scan Display has been able to refocus its business in the last year, highlights the versatility of the skills acquired in the exhibition and events industries. These industries require creativity, excellent project management skills, and great teamwork with suppliers and clients to meet tight deadlines – the perfect skills set for shopfitting and activations.