South Africa was somewhat late to enjoy commercial radio broadcasting, due mostly to the relative isolation of the nation. There had been broadcasting at the Africa’s southern tip beginning in 1923, and the government owned South African Broadcasting Company was formed by parliament in 1936. The SABC established services in all of the official languages of South Africa, although it was regularly accused of being a mouth-piece for the ruling National Party, as well as furthering its Apartheid agenda.
In 1950, the SABC launched Springbok Radio as a commercial broadcasting service to supplement the public service broadcasts of its English and Afrikaans language networks. Springbok also generated cash for the radio service. Springbok was an incredibly successful commercial venture, and stayed that way much longer than dramatic radio was profitable in other parts of the world. This is directly attributable to the fact that there was no commercial television in South Africa until 1976. Like other commercial radio broadcasters, Springbok was dependent on sponsor support, and was unable to compete with TV, and shut its doors in 1985.
Lux Radio Theater was part of Springbok's line-up for all of the 35 years, except the last six months. Although the show had the same sponsor as the earlier American show, Lever Brothers, and the same name, it was a much different program. The Lux Theater for American ears began with adaptations of plays and later popular Hollywood movies. Whenever possible, the original movie stars would appear in the broadcast, which would be performed live in front of a live audience (as well as broadcast live, perhaps a strange experience for movie actors!)
The South African Lux Radio Theater was more wide ranging for its story sources. Popular plays from the British stage, as well as American, English, and Australian novels were adapted to the hour long format. In fact a number of the early shows were rebroadcasts of Australian programs. The South African version of Lux Theater, being produced later in time, also benefits from better production and recording technologies.
There may be some division among old time radio fans about the inclusion of commercials in OTR shows. Those who appreciate their inclusion as a part of the 'time capsule quality' of the OTR experience will further appreciate the South African ads in Lux Radio Theater. Unlike American broadcasts of Golden Age of Radio, apparently Springbok was operating a commercial model closer to American Television after the 1950's game show scandals. Rather than the sponsor "owning" the airtime, they were allowed to simply put their name on the show, and the network would place commercials where it wanted. We are treated to a South African treatment of many American Brands, as well as several that are limited to the South African Market.