Inside Cell C’s sprawling new campus

Added by Duncan McLeod on 30 January 2014. · · Share this Post

Filed under In-depth, Top

In this picture essay, TechCentral takes you inside Cell C’s massive new head office in Johannesburg, which includes a customer walk-in centre, a distribution warehouse and a national network operations centre. Words and photos by Duncan McLeod.

A close-up view of the main office block

The giant Cell C distribution warehouse as seen from the rear of the main office block

The main entrance to Cell C's new head office

The letter "C" is used in creative ways across the campus, here as outdoor seating

The main office block, as seen from the customer service centre

The entrace to the customer service centre

A section of the customer service centre

Another view of the main office block

Call centre operations on the southern side of the campus

The main boardroom ... still under construction

The warehouse, up close

Inside Cell C's new network operations centre

The courtyard in the centre of the main office block, as seen from outside CEO Alan Knott-Craig's office

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Cell C employees began moving into the company’s sprawling new campus, built at the confluence of the N1 and N3 freeways in Woodmead, near Midrand, at the end of last year.

The 50 000sq m facility includes a main head office facility, a customer service centre, a new national network operations centre, a distribution warehouse, call centre facilities and an upmarket canteen. The vast campus is bookended by two Cell C-branded towers, which also double as base stations, according to a Cell C spokesman.

There’s even a rehabilitated wetland on the campus, including a 1,8km walking trail.

The new facility pulls together a number of disparate offices that Cell C used previously. Its main head office was previously located at 70 Rivonia Road in the heart of Sandton.

The new head office, for which Cell C has signed a lease agreement, forms part of the multibillion-rand Waterfall Business Estate development, which straddles the N1 between the Buccleuch interchange and Midrand’s Allandale Road.

Property fund Atterbury Investment Holdings is the major investor in the property development.

The Islamic Institute has owned the land since 1934. Atterbury secured a 99-year lease over the site because the land could not be sold in terms of Islamic law.

The Waterfall development consists of a shopping mall, offices and homes.

A number of other technology businesses have moved into the area recently, including MB Technologies, Altech, SAP, FibreCo, Nashua, On Digital Media and BT Group. Software vendor Oracle has had an office in the area for a number of years already. The area is centrally located between Johannesburg and Pretoria, with a freeway to the east leading to Johannesburg’s main airport.

When Cell C CEO Alan Knott-Craig was group CEO of Vodacom, he was instrumental in the construction of a sprawling campus for the mobile operator in Midrand, with a shopping centre called Vodaworld — now Vodacom World — taking centre stage. The Vodacom facility includes conference facilities and a gym.

In total, about 2 500 people will work at the facility, including Cell C staff, contractors and suppliers.  — (c) 2014 NewsCentral Media

  • All images in this picture essay are copyrighted by NewsCentral Media
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  • DAnger

    Their new office looks great, i need a personal tour.

  • Davebee

    Yeah and I need a job!

  • CouchPotato

    Greedy cellphone networks, ALL milking profits from the public

  • Parktown_Prawn

    Some further trivia: One-time prime minister Jan Smuts was key to granting the land owned by the Islamic Institute since 1934, in such a way that when the National Party came to power it found it difficult to force them out, as the government was to do in many other places through forced removals.

    Everything from where Makro is now right up to the Allandale off-ramp was / is Islamic Institute land. The key family, as I understood it many years ago, was the A K Mia family. Since the late 1980s, when the first parcels of land were sold for Makro and Woodmead Value Mart, pieces have steadily been developed or sold off.

  • Pasco_e

    @parktown_prawn:disqus, great stuff. Now Duncan writes; “The Islamic Institute has owned the land since 1934. Atterbury secured a 99-year lease over the site because the land could not be sold in terms of Islamic law…”, so how did the Mia family “sell” the land to Makro and Woodmead Value Mart or did you mean “lease”?

  • Parktown_Prawn

    I guess I should’ve said “leased”. In my mind the 99-year lease is a neat technical way to operate within Islamic law, but I really wonder whether it makes a huge difference to the price for “leasing”. Sure, I suppose it might make a difference in tax treatment in the accounts of the respective parties, but I’m certainly no accountant.

  • Parktown_Prawn

    And also . . . Mias, the shop that sells diving and fishing gear, is one of the businesses to emerge from that same family. I suppose if you’re entrepreneurial, making a bundle does not necessarily tame that spirit.

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