The origin of SSG Cases dates back to 1986 when my grandfather and his partner sent out tenders to provide musical instruments to various state institutions. They imported the instruments from the US and had to sell a local product to supply the state and decided to manufacture bags in which they could then sell each instrument in. They have set up a factory and grown from strength to strength until their biggest market has become the export of music instrument bags to DEG music in the USA. The name SSG Cases comes from the two partners who started the business: Andre Steenkamp and Tom Greeff (my grandfather) and the president of DEG Music Mark Schafer. SSG therefore stands for Schafer Steenkamp & Greeff.
As a child I used to play in my grandfather’s factory a lot. It has always been very impressive to see how the raw material is transformed into a world class product and I was so proud to show my friends what we produced here on our own property for the export market.
But depressing economic conditions and a recession have brought everything to an end in 2010, when DEG Music announced that they will now import all bags from a supplier in China. The factory has virtually come to a standstill with just a few last small local orders still keeping the doors open. However, this was not sustainable and the future of SSG Cases seemed dark.
When I finished school in 2011, I had to focus on my future. I enrolled at UNISA and started studying Marketing Management. I had a lot of free time on hand. So I helped my grandfather in the old factory to sort out and empty the place so that the buildings could be rented out. It was hard and sad, so much material had already been cut, ready to be transformed into a product. So much time, money and planning that went to waste.
But here somewhere between all the prepared material panels and wood I saw potential. The endless possibilities came through my mind and I decided to take the opportunity and blow new life into the factory. Music instruments have never intrigued me and I knew I should do something I have a passion for, so I started making gun cases. The first bags I made were based on an old design that my grandfather developed. Shortly thereafter, designs followed and I started marketing the series under several firearm merchants. I decided to keep the name SSG Cases over the nostalgia that adhered to it and started to establish the SSG brand.
Today, the SSG range consists of a wide variety of products for the hunting and shooting industry, aimed at delivering quality purposeful products to every facet of sport. Our main inspiration for new designs comes from feedback from our end users and our own experience with our products. I myself am a hunt and shoot fanatic and I test all our products myself. We are also proud manufacturers of certain products for other brands such as Wildebees, Stevenson Hamilton and Legionnaire.
We do not have a retail department but we supply several leading firearm dealers nationwide. We are excited about what the future holds for SSG and we are determined to develop even more to provide quality products for the shooter