Grill or be grilled. One of South Africa’s leading manufacturers of braai’s and fireplaces invests in its equipment and facilities to cut lead times and keep up with overwhelming demand. Right now, keeping the winter cold and gloom at bay with  a warming and welcoming fireplace is a priority.

Nothing warms a home, literally and figuratively, quite like a flickering fire. While the flames create physical warmth, their orange glow creates a sense of comfort on a cold winter’s day or night. But with summer just around the corner, it is just about time to get the coals out, or turn on the gas, and light a match to get ready for our favourite past time — braaiing. Embrace  the vleis (meat). Even if you’ve never so much as opened a pack of boerie (sausage) on your own, becoming the coveted tong-master is not as difficult as it once was.

While our ancestors had to make do with uneven heat and  rusty griddles, nowadays finding the tjop (meat chop) to compliment your dop (alcoholic drink) simply means slapping some spices on a fine piece of meat, sealing in the flavour and cooking it over the coals to one’s taste.

Of course it doesn’t end there. In the past a braai was just another way to cook meat. Today a    Megamaster is one of South Africa’s leading manufacturers of braai’s and fireplaces.

The MegaGroup was established in 1997 as a local manufacturer of braais and fireplaces under the brand name Megamaster. Two additional Pretoria based factories were   braai is as versatile as a bachelor’s degree that allows you to chop and change depending on your taste and   Megamaster’s outdoor boma fireplace   added during the first seven years of existence, focusing on storage and fencing products.

The current shareholders acquired the MegaGroup in 2005   what you want to cook, whether it is meat, chicken, fish or accompanying side dishes and vegetables. And yes, we are all experts. Our love of fireplaces in winter, and our obsession with braais during our summer weather, has allowed South Africans to live the great outdoors. This has also presented  opportunities for a number of South African companies to manufacture and supply products that help to promote a healthier, more pleasant, enjoyable and efficient way of living. “Life is where you live it. At home, indoors or outside, in your own back yard or on an adventure to discover new and exciting places,” says Magiel de Beer, CEO of Megamaster. “Megamaster is your lifestyle partner, and through our range of braais, fireplaces and outdoor accessories, we aim to enhance and promote that lifestyle.

Megamaster’s mission is  to develop even better products and services and to provide ever better answers to the needs of our customers and other stakeholders. Megamaster is a lifestyle brand that plays a vital role in creating and supplying innovative products that help to improve our lives,” continued De Beer.   and the business model was strategically aligned to become a leader in supplying lifestyle products to mass and independent retailers throughout Southern Africa. Today the MegaGroup’s products are available at almost 1000 retailers in South Africa, Namibia, Botswana, Zambia, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Lesotho and Swaziland.

MegaGroup’s products are manufactured in the group-owned local factory in Pretoria, as well as in strategic factories in South America, India and China. “Our state-of-the-art lifestyle products bring family and friends together in homes, on patios and on outdoor adventures. We provide a wide range of quality and uniquely designed cooking and heating products to truly enhance the lifestyle experience of our product owners,” says De Beer.

By 2008 the company that is run by de Beer and his brother Andre had implemented its strategic decision to have its core focus on supplying products to mass and independent retailers. The next step in the development of the company was to broaden its range of product offerings. “We came to the point that, although we were well-known in the local market for our fireplaces and braais, we felt we needed to offer more than just these  products. There are a whole host of accessories, tools and complimentary  equipment that are used with our equipment, and of course many variations. Each individual has their own preferences and requirements and we needed to address this.” “We now offer 600 different products with many of those being added to our range.”

A Megamaster stainless steel built-in braai manufactured by the company   manufacturing, and we cannot justify the investment in this equipment.” “The freestanding braais come in many different variations including round, barrel and drum.

Some are manufactured locally and others are imported, but all under the Megamaster brand as are our pots and cookware. The three legged potjies, which is another popular outdoor cooking experience that South Africans love to enjoy with family and friends, are offered in either cast iron or aluminium, and in various sizes.”  “In the braai range for example, there are built-in or free standing options, and the sizes can vary. The braai range  caters for all tastes and offers the perfect answer for wood and gas braai enthusiasts.

Our built-in range is available in a range of sizes and includes wood burning, gas as well as wood and gas combination units finished in either mild or stainless steel. These units complete any entertainment area whether used indoors or outdoors. Our freestanding braai range is available  in uniquely designed wood burning units as well as our state-of-the-art patio gas braai range.” “85 different products and combinations are included in the accessories for the braais such as ash pans, tongs, brushes and grid cleaners. The grid range has 31 different variations.” “Not all of these products are manufactured locally just because of the economies of scale. Built-in and free standing braais and fireplaces, flue pipes, rotating pipes and ashpans are examples of what can be manufactured locally because they are manufactured from sheet metal and require forming, welding and painting essentially. We have the equipment and processes so it makes sense to manufacture these locally. However the grids will either be sourced locally or internationally as they require a different process when using stainless steel and heat resistant paint and are perfectly vented to enhance your fireplace experience.

The built-in fireplace range gives the new home owner, renovator and lodging client the chance to enhance an architectural design   in their rooms and lifestyles. Included in this range  are double-sided and vent-free gas fireplaces. Our freestanding, open wood burning fireplaces were designed to provide the ultimate solution for any home owner as they are available in traditional, modern and multi-sided gas panelled designs.” “The built-in units have seven different variations and the free standing units have four variations. However we do manufacture to specification.”  Rebranding and growth Not satisfied with what the company had achieved since the new shareholders had acquired MegaGroup six years earlier, in 2011 they decided to rebrand the company. “We had broadened the base of our customers, outlets  and products, but we still needed to show how we had grown  by establishing new standards in which we can engage with customers for the best results. This entailed a new vision, new logo, new packaging and an innovative solution to make us stand out amongst the rest,” said De Beer.