Press Release

ZEISS Academy Africa inaugurated

Strategic step to strengthen presence in South Africa and Sub-Saharan Africa – Customer enablement and training on new levels – German Federal Minister Habeck visits ZEISS South Africa headquarters.

9 December 2022

Johannesburg, South Africa | 9 December 2022 | ZEISS Group
During his visit to Namibia and to South Africa this week, the German Federal Minister for Economic Affairs and Climate Action, Robert Habeck, joined the CFO of Carl Zeiss Meditec AG Justus Felix Wehmer and ZEISS South Africa head Seyfi Ceyhan for the inauguration of the ZEISS Academy Africa at the company’s regional headquarters in Johannesburg.
With a one million euro investment in equipment and facilities, the ZEISS Academy Africa is an important step to strengthen the presence of the company in South Africa and Sub-Saharan Africa. Through customer enablement and training on sophisticated products and solutions, the academy unleashes the full value of innovations in medical technology, industrial quality solutions and research microscopy solutions. Doctors and medical staff, engineers and researchers have access to hands-on training under near real-life conditions utilizing the most current ZEISS product portfolio.
Furthermore, ZEISS is opening up its training facilities to the next generation. This includes students in the medical and industrial engineering fields, in scientific research and in nature conservation. The Academy Africa also supports children and youth, especially from underprivileged areas, giving them access to microscopy and encouraging them to get into STEM subjects.
Federal Minister Habeck comments: “The combination of making leading technology available to top professionals in the African medical, industrial and research sectors, and engaging youth in these fields holds substantial potential – further strengthening the German-African partnership and close cooperation.”
“South Africa and the entire African continent are growing in importance in our global strategy and reach. Significant investments, such as the new ZEISS office in Cape Town and the ZEISS Academy Africa here in Johannesburg, are paving the way to leverage the opportunity here in Africa,” says Seyfi Ceyhan.
Justus Felix Wehmer adds: “ZEISS is strengthening its global presence and is building sustainable relationships in growing economies. Africa is a key driver of growth due to its rich natural resources that attract industrial and other investors, its leap-frogging digital transformation, and its young and energetic population eager to build its own sustainable future. We are delighted to be part of, and contribute to, this growth.”

During his visit to Namibia and to South Africa this week, the German Federal Minister for Economic Affairs and Climate Action, Robert Habeck, joined the CFO of Carl Zeiss Meditec AG Justus Felix Wehmer and ZEISS South Africa head Seyfi Ceyhan for the inauguration of the ZEISS Academy Africa at the company’s regional headquarters in Johannesburg.

Background: ZEISS in South Africa and Sub-Saharan Africa

ZEISS has been present in South Africa for over 90 years. Today, 130 employees and 20 distributors across Sub-Saharan Africa are supporting customers and covering a wide range of the ZEISS portfolio.

This includes Medical Technology for ophthalmology and microsurgery, as well as Research Microscopy Solutions comprising light, laser and electron microscopes. ZEISS Industrial Quality Solutions help, for instance, the automotive industry and its suppliers to ensure top quality according to global standards. At its Johannesburg Vision Care production site, the company mills and fits eyeglass lenses for customers in the region. Finally, ZEISS offers binoculars and spotting scopes for hunters, bird watchers and other nature lovers – and supports BirdLife South Africa and other nature conservation organizations in the region.

Working closely with customers and enabling them to maximize the use and value of its technology has always been a key element of the ZEISS strategy. The ZEISS Academy Africa is now establishing both on-site practical training at the Johannesburg regional headquarters as well as online training modules, some of which have already been included in partnering universities’ curricula. These modules are now being offered to universities across Sub-Saharan Africa.

The ZEISS Academy Africa is strengthening and expanding existing engagements: in line with “helping people help themselves,” ZEISS has been providing medical care to people in underprivileged regions since 2005 through five global diagnosis, treatment and training centers for eyecare. Three of these centers are based in Africa: University College Hospital in Ibadan, Nigeria; Kilimanjaro Christian Medical College in Moshi, Tanzania; and the Shaheed a Fadheel Maz Center in Khartoum, Sudan.

In order to provide poorer regions with medical care, ZEISS has formed sustainable partnerships with international organizations such as the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness and the Christoffel Mission for the Blind.


ZEISS is an internationally leading technology enterprise operating in the fields of optics and optoelectronics. In the previous fiscal year, the ZEISS Group generated annual revenue totaling 7.5 billion euros in its four segments Semiconductor Manufacturing Technology, Industrial Quality & Research, Medical Technology and Consumer Markets (status: 30 September 2021).

For its customers, ZEISS develops, produces and distributes highly innovative solutions for industrial metrology and quality assurance, microscopy solutions for the life sciences and materials research, and medical technology solutions for diagnostics and treatment in ophthalmology and microsurgery. The name ZEISS is also synonymous with the world's leading lithography optics, which are used by the chip industry to manufacture semiconductor components. There is global demand for trendsetting ZEISS brand products such as eyeglass lenses, camera lenses and binoculars.

With a portfolio aligned with future growth areas like digitalization, healthcare and Smart Production and a strong brand, ZEISS is shaping the future of technology and constantly advancing the world of optics and related fields with its solutions. The company's significant, sustainable investments in research and development lay the foundation for the success and continued expansion of ZEISS' technology and market leadership. ZEISS invests 13 percent of its revenue in research and development – this high level of expenditure has a long tradition at ZEISS and is also an investment in the future.

With around 37,000 employees, ZEISS is active globally in almost 50 countries with around 30 production sites, 60 sales and service companies and 27 research and development facilities (status: 31 March 2022). Founded in 1846 in Jena, the company is headquartered in Oberkochen, Germany. The Carl Zeiss Foundation, one of the largest foundations in Germany committed to the promotion of science, is the sole owner of the holding company, Carl Zeiss AG.

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