Posts tagged ‘Africa cloud’

Pamoja disperses Cloud services through East Africa

Pamoja, the value-added services business entity and strategic arm leading SEACOM’s entry into content aggregation and Cloud computing services, will host its Cloud platform at Liquid Telecom’s East Africa Data Centre in Nairobi and use the facility to roll out Cloud services to the rapidly- expanding East Africa market.

According to a recent BizTech article, the company selected Nairobi, Kenya as its Cloud service delivery base because of its strategic location in relation to other countries in the East African market.

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Come and meet Pamoja at the upcoming Cloud World Forum Africa, taking place from 10-11 June at The Maslow, Johannesburg.

Liquid Telecom’s East Africa Data Centre is the largest and most sophisticated carrier-neutral data centre in East Africa and is the ideal facility in which Pamoja can host its Cloud platform. The Nairobi Cloud platform compliments Pamoja’s other Cloud platform that is located in South Africa.

Executive management at Pamoja says the data centre facilities meet the Company’s availability, security and connectivity needs. These are also base criteria for the ISO 27001 certification processs which Pamoja has embarked upon. The ISO 27001 standard is the specification for an Information Security Management System. The objective of the standard itself is to “provide requirements for establishing, implementing, maintaining and continuously improving an Information Security Management System (ISMS)”.

“By interconnecting the two Pamoja platforms through the SEACOM submarine cable infrastructure we are able to firstly provide Cloud services with a regional presence and secondly offer geographic redundancy to customers who demand this,” says Albie Bester, General Manager at Pamoja.

“With physical Cloud infrastructure in Africa Pamoja is able to address customer concerns about the location of their sensitive data and ensure improved service response times compare to Cloud services that are hosted in Europe or the US,” Bester adds.

The Kenyan and South African Cloud platforms are managed by the Pamoja Cloud Services team with support from SEACOM network operations.

“Our Cloud platform is based on the Microsoft Dynamic Datacentre blue print and through the use of advanced management and monitoring systems it is possible to ensure the highest level of availability with a relatively small team of experts.” Bester continues.

Pamoja is poised to help businesses across the continent take advantage of the shift towards Cloud, the impact of the internet and social networks on the corporate space and the relevance of Cloud computing to core operations across most businesses.

Forrester Research forecasts that the global market for Cloud computing will grow from $40,7 billion to more than $241 billion in 2020.

According to Bester Cloud adoption in Africa is in an exciting and budding phase and although issues like quality of connectivity and stable electricity sources still represent challenges, infrastructure is improving all the time. “Soon Africa will be ready to consume Cloud services at a large scale.”

Speaker Spotlight: Adrian Schofield, African ICT Alliance (AfICTA) #cloudafrica

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Adrian Schofield, Vice Chairman, African ICT Alliance (AfICTA).

Adrian has spent more than 25 years being involved in activities to promote standards and growth in the ICT sector. He received the 2012 Distinguished Service in ICT Award from Computer Society South Africa. He currently serves in these voluntary capaciies:

• Past President and Board member of Computer Society South Africa
• Vice Chairman of the Africa ICT Alliance
• Board member of Randjesfontein Country Estates
• Past Chairman of the Wanderers Club

In the past, Adrian has also served as President of the Information Technology Association of South Africa, as Vice-Chairman for Africa of the World Information Technology & Services Alliance and Chairman of the African Federation of ICT Associations. Adrian is a Fellow and Professional grade member of CSSA.

We asked Adrian for his insights into the African Cloud Market for 2014 and beyond!

Cloud. Terminology or technology?

In the BIG world where mainframes used to reign, cloud has been the terminology that defines the use of the network to link users and remote processors for over 30 years. It is not new. In today’s BIG world, replace the mainframes with data centres and X25 with Internet Protocol and the users are still accessing remote processors. OK, the user interfaces are friendlier; the devices may be mobile and the speeds faster…

In the African world, can the emerging economies and developing societies achieve the potential benefits of sharing resources and services on this BIG scale?

Across the continent, the infrastructure enables access for a relatively small proportion of the population and the cost of connection is high. Legislation and regulation are often outdated and inappropriate and issues of privacy and protection pose risks for providers and users alike.

Within the African context, there is the SMALL world. The world of small and medium enterprises, where technology acquisition is managed more by gut feel and word of mouth than by professional executives researching options to meet business demands. Do the decision-makers in this SMALL world understand “Cloud”?

In a research report published in April 2014, the JCSE at Wits University reviews the economic value of cloud services for SMMEs and challenges the vendor community to bridge the gap between the terminology of BIG business and the technology needed to support the growth of smaller enterprises.

Hear more from Adrian Schofield at this year’s Cloud World Forum Africa!

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Every Cloud. Justify two days from the office with Cloud Africa’s Silver Linings #cloudafrica

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We appreciate that time in the office is invaluable, with your busy schedules it may be difficult to justify a two day event. Every Cloud (event) does however, have more than one silver lining.

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Can you see Africa in the Cloud!

We want to share with you our top USPS for 2014.  Below are the key take-aways for this year’s Cloud World Forum Africa.

6 weeks to go! 400+ attendees already registered, join them and register your place today!

Key take-aways!

1. Meet senior enterprise and telco decision-makers
2. Hear from over 70+ expert speakers on key topics in our keynote theatre
3. Discover the latest and most innovative cloud products in our 2 day expo
4. Learn from regional and global industry case studies to give you a clearer picture of cloud computing’s role in your organisation
5. Advise and receive support from fellow industry experts
6. Collaborate with peers to develop new strategy and best practices for your business
7. Understand every corner of the cloud with our concurrent telco and enterprise conference streams
8. Evening networking reception for all attendees
9. Part of the world’s leading Cloud event series – delivering great shows across the globe!
10. Take home an Attendance Certificate!

Visit the website to view the full agenda and for more information!

Email enquiries to rebecca@cloudworldseries.com.

Dimension Data acquires IT service provider Nexus #cloudafrica

Hear more from Dimension Data at this year’s Cloud World Forum Africa – 10-11 June 2014, South Africa.

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Datacentre and cloud services provider Dimension Data announced Thursday that the company has entered into an agreement to acquire Nexus, a US-based IT service provider. The latest acquisition comes just months after Dimension Data completed its acquisition of comms service provider NextiraOne.

Brett Dawson, chief executive officer of Dimension Data (a part of NTT Group) said that its purchase of California-based Nexus will help Dimension Data expand into the vast (and particularly crowded) American datacentre support and IT services business, expanding the company’s presence in the US by about 40 per cent.

“Dimension Data has been building expertise and experience in ICT solutions and services that deliver real business value to our clients. Nexus increases our ability to support both our US-based and global clients with West Coast presence,” Dawson said.

Nexus has 19 offices in California, Nevada, Colorado, Arizona, Utah, Washington, Texas, Georgia, Florida, and North Carolina, and the acquisition will bring 657 Nexus employees into the Dimension Data fold. But Nexus will for the time being continue to operate as an independent company.

“Nexus brings a rich set of services and solutions to the Group, particularly in the data centre, collaboration, enterprise networks, security and cloud spaces. In addition, there’s minimal overlap of geographies and clients which strengthens Dimension Data’s presence across the Americas,” said Dimension Data Americas chief executive officer Mark Slaga.

The acquisition comes just months after South African-based Dimension Data completed its acquisition of communications service provider NextiraOne, which added 1,850 permanent employees in Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Spain and the United Kingdom to the group. In February, upon the closing of the acquisition, the company said it intends to double annual revenue over the next five years, from $6bn to $12bn.

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South African cloud market forecast to top $229.69 million

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South Africa’s cloud services market value is expected to grow to $229.69 million in 2014, according to a recent IDC research report.

A recent report has found that the value of South Africa’s cloud services market will continue to grow with a focus on public cloud software as a service (SaaS) spending.

The value of the likes of outsourced, managed services, and hosted services market in the country would increase by 10.9% year on year in 2014 to $2.8 billion.

Public cloud services would account for the majority (65%) of overall cloud spending, and the market is expected to see an increase in spending on private cloud services in 2014 and beyond, the report revealed.

The country’s evolving role of telecom operators would continue to be a critical factor in the local growth of data centre and cloud services with the South African IT market continuing to shift from IS outsourcing to managed and datacentre services as budgets remain under pressure and projects become smaller and more specific. End-user organisations will look to cost-effective IT delivery solutions such as cloud computing to help stay within budget.

“The cloud market in South Africa is expanding, with a number of international and new local providers entering the market, and it is maturing fast due to increasing competition with established vendors”

However, despite leading the continent in the uptake of cloud computing services a report compiled by Cisco and research firm World Wide Worx last year revealed that South Africa would be dramatically overtaken by West African nation, Nigeria.

The research study titled ‘Cloud in Africa: Reality Check 2013’ stated that cloud computing uptake would explode in major African economies, as businesses gain confidence in both the security and reliability of the cloud.

It was revealed that 44% of Nigerian businesses are expected to embrace cloud in 2014, which would bring the total in that country to 80% by year end.

According to the report, 36% of businesses in Nigeria were using cloud services last year, 50% South African medium and large businesses were using cloud services; while 48% were using the cloud in Kenya.

“Cloud computing is the next big step in the evolution of computing and the internet,” said David Meads, Cisco’s vice president for Africa.

“The broadband revolution sweeping Africa and the continent’s reputation for innovation add up to tremendous appetite for services that will drive this evolution. Looking ahead, the Internet of Everything represents the largest online trend today.

Meads concluded, “As more people, things and devices connect to the internet in Africa, more data from more places will be introduced across corporate and service provider networks, which will open up new opportunities and increased demand for the cloud.”

Join us at the the Cloud World Forum Africa 2014 – Africa’s Largest Cloud & ICT Event for Enterprise & Telecom Professionals.

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Following the huge success of the Cloud World Forum Africa 2013, we’re expanding & enhancing our agenda to give you Africa’s first and foremost comprehensive Enterprise ICT show: Cloud World Forum Africa incorporating Enterprise ICT Africa 2014

IBM to invest $100m in Africa, bring Watson cloud to continent

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Someone looks like they wanted even more money…

In line with previous commitments placing Africa at the heart of IBM’s long-term growth strategy, the company announced Thursday that it is bringing its Watson cognitive computing platform to the continent, investing $100m in the initiative. The announcement follows a recently announced $1bn investment in the cloud-based cognitive computing platform, and a massive hardware divestment.

With Watson IBM is hoping to carve out a unique space for itself in the cloud arena by serving up a software as a service platform tuned for cognitive computing applications.

“In the last decade, Africa has been a tremendous growth story — yet the continent’s challenges, stemming from population growth, water scarcity, disease, low agricultural yield and other factors are impediments to inclusive economic growth,” said Kamal Bhattacharya, director, IBM Research – Africa.

“With the ability to learn from emerging patterns and discover new correlations, Watson’s cognitive capabilities hold enormous potential in Africa – helping it to achieve in the next two decades what today’s developed markets have achieved over two centuries.”

IBM said it plans to initially focus resources on spurring development in cloud and data applications to improve healthcare provision as well as education.

As part of the $100m it committed IBM will also establish a new pan-African Centre of Excellence for Data-Driven Development (CEDD), and is currently in the process of recruiting research partners including universities, development agencies, and start-ups in and outside Africa.

It also plans to open new “innovation centres” in Lagos, Nigeria; Casablanca, Morocco; and Johannesburg, South Africa. The company is hoping to spur development of local skills in information technology and boost entrepreneurialism around cloud and big data.

According to African Development Bank data, Africa is home to some of the fastest growing economies in the world with GDP growth rates sitting between five and seven per cent annually. But sub-Saharan Africa also suffers from a relative lack of datacentre and internet infrastructure according to datacentre and IT consultancy IT Consilium, which may inhibit penetration of cloud services in the region in the near term.

Nevertheless, IBM among others have identified the continent as a massive growth opportunity for enterprise IT vendors over the next ten years, and a region the company hopes to break into as it shifts away from hardware to focus on software and the cloud.

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