Zambia hints at fifth telco operator

A fifth telco
for Zambia?

Enough room says
industry regulator.

Thursday, Feb 20th

NetApp plans to increase focus on Africa

Data storage and network management company NetApp opened its Africa hub in Johannesburg yesterday, as it seeks to capitalise on the continent`s economic boom.

The company already has offices in Kenya, Angola and Nigeria. SA is to be NetApp`s regional hub that is to assist the business to focus more on sub-Saharan Africa, which the World Bank forecasts is to have strong growth domestic product growth of over 5% in 2012 and 2013.

“It`s a sales office primarily,” says Mike Styer, NetApp`s Africa manager.

Styer says the office has pre-sales and post-sales resources, field support, project management, management resources and marketing resources. The data storage company has an indirect business model, which means its services are sold purely through its partners in most markets around the world, including Africa.

Its staff complement in SA has subsequently grown to 22 people since it started operating in the country in 2001, but Styer says NetApp`s new Johannesburg office has the capacity to house 30 to 40 staff.

NetApp`s aim to increase its attention on emerging markets, such as Africa, comes at a time when global storage sales levels are increasing and becoming a more competitive space, according to experts.

Research company IDC reported that overall external storage system revenue increased 7.7% year-on-year in the fourth quarter last year, to $6.6 billion.

NetApp`s revenue increased from $2.352 billion in 2010 to $2.911 billion in 2011. It had the third biggest global market share in external storage sales with Hewlett-Packard (HP), as EMC`s market share stood at 29.4% in the fourth quarter and its rival IBM at 15.2%.

Despite NetApp`s strong growth, it was dwarfed by EMC, which marked the highest growth among the top five vendors, with revenue of $1.93 billion in the fourth quarter of 2011, up 22.4% year-over-year. Furthermore, companies such as HP, which have traditionally been more well-known for manufacturing hardware, have made strides in the data and storage markets.

But Styer is not worried about increased competition in the space.

“We`re not everything to everybody, and I think the guys like IBM, HP, Dell: they try to position themselves in a particular space; that they can be everything in a data centre or everything in an organisation. We don`t; we do storage, we do it very well.”

ALSO ON ITWEB AFRICA

More governments leaning on ICT to sustain strategies Published on 13 February 2020

Driven by increasing need for accurate, real-time data analytics and cyber security, say experts.

Global blockchain alliance to support Africa's aviation parts industry Published on 18 February 2020

Stakeholders in Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (MRO) chain to demonstrate how technology can be used to digitally manage parts.

What of Vodafone Ghana's economic future? Published on 12 February 2020

Transfer of control of the company to Vodacom Group reignites speculation over company's local listing.

IDC, Liferay release report analysing customer experience trends in the insurance industry Published on 20 February 2020

According to a joint report by IDC and Liferay, the technologies most driving this growth are those relating to the optimisation and improvement of customer experience (CX).