Watching the rise and rise of ZAPA over the years has been an inspiration to see. What started as a need to create a dedicated localised Playstation Facebook community, DJ and his team have been hard at work growing and nurturing this community into a close-knit family. As time has progressed, so has their offering, providing their audience with a one-stop-shop for all their gaming and geeky needs. We decided to find out more about what goes on behind the scenes with Dj, the founder and creator of all things ZAPA.
MCBN: We’ve been avid followers of the ZAPA revolution on Facebook. Can you talk us through how this group, turned into a fully-fledged business has taken off and who’s the incredible team working alongside you?
Hey guys! Thanks for having me!
ZAPA itself started in my bed one morning, I was just getting tired of seeing other platform posts all over Facebook, and no Playstation posts… So I started ZAPA (ZA Playstation Association.) As the group grew, we approached retailers to cater to ZAPA specifically and offer the community good deals and great service. As time went by, the service levels dropped, and I knew we had to rectify the issue. That’s where ZAPA Gaming (The Retail side) started. An online store by the people, for the people. We’ve had many people assisting ZAPA over the years, but currently, on the retail side it’s only myself, Sihaam and Donna
MCBN: As things have grown, the groups have spawned into pages, websites, sales portals and Whatsapp groups. Has this turned into a full-time job for you? Has it always been a job for you or was it a part-time management roll?
As the saying goes, If you love what you do, you’ll never work a day in your life. I firmly believe this.
ZAPA, ZAPA Gaming and ZAPA Collectables SA will never be work to me, I love this community. That will never change.
I do however have a day job yes… My days are very busy, yes!
MCBN: We have noticed a rise of action figures and famous character statues being promoted through the channels. These, at times, life-size statues and figurines are brought into South Africa, and if we’re not mistaken, you’re the only one local to Cape Town to provide these products, how did this come about and when did you realise that there was a big want for these figurines and statues.
Strangely enough, we only started with collector’s editions of certain games. As the need got bigger, we branched out to different avenues, and before we knew it, we were full-on retailers for products like Hot Toys, Sideshow Collectibles, XM Studios, Iron Studios and Prime1! We love both aspects of ZAPA Gaming equally, the gaming side, and the collecting side! We will be exploring many new avenues in the near future to keep everyone entertained.
MCBN: Where is the best place for the audience to find these items?
We advertise our products daily through the page, ZAPA GAMING on Facebook, they can also join ZAPA Collectables SA on Facebook, also ZAPA (ZA Playstation Association) on Facebook and we are also on Instagram: @zaparevolution. Alternatively, all our products are listed on the website: www.zapagaming.co.za
But if someone is looking for something specific, and can’t find it, they can just contact me directly and my team and we will do our best to source it.
MCBN: What does your collectors set up at home look like and what’s your favourite collectable – or is it too hard to choose one?
I am busy building my setup at my new house. It will also be the first-ever showroom for these collectables in Cape Town for people to come and look at. All these details will be revealed soon! My favourite statue is my Hush Superman from Prime1, it stands over 1m tall!!!
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MCBN: For readers looking to find out more about your auctions, do those only take place on Facebook or can they find additional channels for that?
They only happen on Facebook yes, auctions and Raffles!
MCBN: There are some major titles coming up over the remaining months of 2020 and early 2021, have you got your eyes on anything specific?
Almost too many to mention! But if I had to choose one, I would say Farcry 6! I love the series, and I can’t wait to see what they’ve done with the next instalment!
MCBN: We’ve been major fans of the work you’re doing with assisting the community and allowing everyone a chance to purchase games, hardware, figurines, statues, collectables, you name it. What brought the idea of providing a web portal and payment plan for your customers
I guess that’s where the gamer and the collector in me came out… I love to own beautiful things, and I want all the community members to be able to afford them, but they are pricey! When I was younger, I made some bad debt, because I wanted all these fancy new things… When it came to ZAPA Gaming and the community, I knew from the start I wanted everyone to be able to afford that new game, or new headset, or new statue! Without breaking the bank, without any hidden fees, and definitely without any interest! You tell me what you can afford per month, and that’s what you will pay!
MCBN: We’re always interested to know… What’s your favourite Playstation game of all time?
Without a doubt…
God Of War
Kratos says to Atreus in the game, “We Must Be Better”, and that phrase has always stuck with me. It’s our slogan at ZAPA Gaming.
MCBN: One thing we’re dying to know… Will you be getting the Playstation 5 on release date? We’re eagerly awaiting the release, and hoping to have our hands on a console as soon after release as humanly possible…
I definitely will be first in line! For the first time ever! We will also assist as many people possible with affordable payment plans for the new console, at ZAPA Gaming.
MCBN: Thanks for chatting to us DJ, any last words for the audience?
The only thing I can ever say is THANK YOU! Thank you to each and every Zapanite for supporting ZAPA, and motivating us daily to improve and keep bringing you new entertainment! We are beyond grateful for all the support! And thank you to each and every person, behind the screens, that no one knows of, that helps keep ZAPA Gaming going forward! You know exactly who you are, and we love you all very much!