JG Electronics was founded in 1990, initially to do repairs to IT and related electronic equipment, hence the name.
In 1991, the company started selling PC’s which in those days had no colour, and had a 10Mb Hard drive, with 64K of RAM (in other words less capacity than even the most basic phone today).
At this time inkjet printers were still starting out (most companies were using dot matrix printers – which were like a glorified typewriter), so the quality was terrible. The only printers that could produce photo quality images cost tens of thousands of Rands, and took a minute to print a page. Companies needing photo quality were paying up to R 60,000 for a photo printer. R 60,000 in those days was more money than a good car cost to buy!
In early 1994 JG Electronics found a company in the United States manufacturing a photo quality printer which took 30 minutes to print a page, and which only cost R 3000. Initially this printer was sold only to the corporate world and architectural firms, but as time went by and with some experimentation it was discovered that with the right coatings on a tile, and the right amount of heat, the photo could be transferred onto the tile. Thus, sublimation transfer printing was born.
We used the Fargo Primera, and also the Sony Video-printers (which we actually made to print scans for radiologists) to transfer images onto mugs and other coated products.
In those days, the Chinese knew nothing about coated products, so the products were either imported already coated from the USA and the UK, or in our case, they were coated locally with our own locally developed coating. We did all our own coating until mid-2004, when the volumes grew too great for local production.
Heat presses were also only available from the USA and UK, so they were many thousands of rand. At JG Electronics we developed and built our own range of T-shirt, and Mug presses, right here in South Africa.
In the mid 1990’s Sawgrass ™ developed the first inkjet printable sublimation inks, and we’ve been their SOLE AGENT ever since.
JG Electronics has grown from strength to strength. The Johannesburg branch is now in our 4th premises, consisting of 2500m² under roof and we also have branches in Cape Town and Bloemfontein. The Randburg office has 2500m² under roof.
We import full 40-foot containers and receive a container every 3.5 weeks on average. We represent a large number of well-known international brands including:
Ricoh and Muggit
Geoknight Heat Presses
Silhouette™ (Cameo and Portrait cutters)
We don’t make extravagant claims and we don’t slander our competitors – that is the mark of an unprofessional company. We established the Sublimation market in South Africa 30 odd years ago, and we are extremely passionate about this industry and the business opportunity it presents to entrepreneurs.