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Tourism photography experience company Magic Memories is celebrating the success of a South African business relationship that has had a positive ‘knock-on’ effect for the local community.
Magic Memories co-founder Stuart Norris said the relationship with license partner The Happy Snappy Photo Company was a great example of the work they could do alongside a local company with local knowledge and a great sense of community.
Magic Memories has been supporting Happy Snappy’s work with the Etafeni project, a community ‘Fit for life, fit for work programme’ which focuses on supporting unskilled workers from disadvantaged backgrounds to source and find employment.
“With the help, support and advice we’ve received from New Zealand Trade and Enterprise and working closely with Happy Snappy, we’re thrilled to support the programme in any way we can, to ensure less advantaged people have an even chance of business success,” said Mr Norris.
He said The Happy Snappy Photo Company was “very much part of “ the Magic Memories business and was treated in the same way as any partner, with the full support of the company’s IT department, performance teams and inclusion in strategy and business development plans.
The partnership between Magic Memories and The Happy Snappy Photo Company has been in place since 2010 and is growing in strength. Happy Snappy is Magic Memories’ South African partner in providing onsite and online high performance tourism photography solutions for one of the biggest attractions in South Africa and now one of the 7 Natural Wonders of the World, Table Mountain, and also the Wheel of Excellence in Cape Town.
Mr Norris has just returned to New Zealand from a week-long trip to see first-hand the work of the Etafeni Project.
The project is dedicated to community uplifting through various courses including skills training, child development, HIV education and other community projects. In an area where almost 28% of the population is HIV-positive, and unemployment is rife, the project addresses numerous problems facing AIDS-affected and vulnerable young people.
With ‘Fit for life’, unemployed school-leavers undergo an intensive 12-month training process, and are then placed in employment with companies such as Happy Snappy.
Etafeni programme students Lisa Sdladla, Mzubanzi Kulati and Nceba Ntuli, all currently working with Happy Snappy, said the experience had changed their lives, giving them the motivation to work towards leadership roles in Magic Memories and learn how to communicate with people from all around the world.
Local Etafeni representative Jeanne Cussen said the association with Magic Memories and Happy Snappy was a “good example” of a small business investing in the future of South Africa.
“These employees can see and learn good life skills that they take with them into the future,” she said.
Happy Snappy Photo Company partner Barry Cooper said it looked forward to a long, ongoing and beneficial relationship with the Etafeni project, thanks to the support of Magic Memories.
“We’re careful about the expectations put on our staff and have a thorough training programme to integrate our requirements with the skills of the students,” he said. “It’s extremely rewarding to see the results.”
This South African partnership is one example of the license partnership model that Magic Memories have set up around the globe.
Magic Memories launched its first operation in China, providing holiday memories and storytelling photobooks for guests who visit Shanghai Chang Feng Ocean World, another prime example of the company working successfully with a local partner in an overseas market.
MAGIC MEMORIES GROUP
“We make people smile” – Since Magic Memories opened its doors in 1995, it has been the company mission to turn the worldwide attraction photography business on its head. Magic Memories thinks and behaves like a tourism company and understands that the guest experience is everything. Magic Memories’ photographers are hosts – they capture, amplify and extend the guest experience in all partner attractions, allowing them to remember the good times years after they visited.
Magic Memories produces photobooks that do more than simply keep the memory alive. The photobooks are designed to actively continue to promote the partner’s attraction and brand as well as encourage return visits and word of mouth recommendations. With the click of a button guests can secure their online version of their photobook and photos of the attraction, other than the personal shots. Guests can share these smiles and the experience on social networking sites, and every view is wrapped in the partner attraction’s brand.
Magic Memories works throughout the world with many iconic attraction partners and are well established within local infrastructure. The company has more than 70 partner attractions in Europe, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, China and Dubai. Staff number more than 220 people working all over the world who photograph over 15 million people every year. Visit www.magicmemories.com for more information.
THE HAPPY SNAPPY PHOTO COMPANY
The Happy Snappy Photo Company and The Magic Memories Group have been in a business partnership since 2010. The first test of the partnership was leading up to and during the FIFA 2010 World Cup. Happy Snappy implemented the Souvenir photographic system at The Wheel Of Excellence based in the V&A Waterfront in Cape Town during the buzz of 2010.
Magic Memories provide these systems to many of the Wheels globally, and South Africa has been the Wheel Of Excellence's latest port of call. The Happy Snappy Photo Company was awarded the rights to Magic Memories Systems in Africa, which enables a world class product offering to be available in South Africa, while helping boost local employment and encourage visitors to journey to this amazing land to see all it has to offer