Cisco and Safaricom Collaborate to Transform Business Communications in Kenya
Safaricom Becomes First Service Provider in Kenya to Launch Managed Services Based on Cisco Solutions to Add Business Value for Customers
NAIROBI, Kenya - Cisco announced today that it has joined forces with Safaricom, Kenya’s leading provider of converged communication solutions, which becomes the first service provider to launch managed services based on Cisco solutions in the East African market. An official ceremony to mark the collaboration held in Nairobi on the 2nd December 2009, was attended by Michael Joseph, CEO of Safaricom, and Yvon Le Roux, vice president for Cisco’s Africa Levant region. Safaricom will be launching several managed service offerings based on Cisco solutions, the first being a ’Managed Office in a Box’ a solution that includes connectivity, conferencing and collaboration tools, security, and a virtual private network (VPN). The connected office solution will allow companies of all sizes to take advantage of Safaricom’s communications expertise to access highly secure site-to-site Internet-based communications; collaborate more effectively to offer better services to their customers; share ideas and intelligence and save costs.
Highlights / Key Facts:
* The demand for managed services in the information technology (IT) market within in Kenya and globally is growing as companies strive to streamline their IT costs. Safaricom will be the first service provider in East Africa to launch a managed services offering based on Cisco solutions and will use it as a way to differentiate its business offering.
* Cisco provides managed services solutions as a way for its partners to differentiate themselves in the marketplace. It helps companies envision, build, and market a new generation of value-added managed services delivered over an extensible, efficient Internet Protocol (IP) infrastructure. The innovative managed services that Cisco offers can help partners capture new revenue streams and expand into different managed services markets.
* Cisco’s managed services offering will provide Safaricom’s customers with:
o A complete end-to-end solution built and tailored to meet their individual business needs and get the benefit of better service support.
o Solutions that are easy to purchase, manage and upgrade
o A solution that takes away the hassle allowing customers to concentrate on running their day- to- day businesses
o Increased productivity to help manage costs and ultimately increase the profitability of their businesses.
* The breadth of the Cisco managed services technology offering helps to deliver a unique market opportunity for its partners. The IP service will be delivered through Safaricom’s wired and wireless local area networks (LANs) with integrated security features. Once the IP service is in place, Safaricom will be able to deliver the technologies with the most apparent business return, including IP communications, telepresence, application-aware data center services and other technologies.
* Michael Joseph CEO of Safaricom
“Safaricom prides itself on being a ’one-stop shop’ for integrated and converged data and voice communication solutions for our customers and with the addition of Cisco managed services we will be able to maintain this unique position. Our services are all geared towards growth and we always strive to ensure that we have a competitive edge in terms of servicing the needs of our customers and ensuring that the have access to the latest and most innovative technology solutions. Our collaboration with Cisco will help us achieve our ambitious goals. This deal forms a key plank of our overall strategy, which has seen us put substantial investments in the country’s two undersea cable ventures and acquire two WiMAX operators. We have also formed a dedicated unit, Safaricom Business, to drive our ambitions in this category.”
* Yvon Le Roux, vice president, Cisco, Africa Levant
“Cisco’s managed services offering is designed to give service providers the competitive edge that will allow them to stay ahead of the game when it comes to their customer needs. We are working closely with Safaricom to build and launch a full portfolio of managed services. We expect ’managed collaboration services’ such as Cisco Unified Communications and Cisco TelePresence to grow significantly in the region with the arrival of submarine cables. These cables, such as Seacom and TEAMS on the east coast, will offer high bandwidth at attractive prices, enabling these managed services. At the same time, ’managed virtualization services’, like server and storage management, bundled with hosting, firewalling and VPN offerings will meet customer expectations for advanced services and will be a key differentiator for service providers targeting businesses. Cisco’s vision is to be the leading enabler of ICT and broadband acceleration in emerging markets through innovative, scalable, high- value technology offerings.”
Links / URLs:
* Learn about Cisco Managed Services at:
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Formed at the turn of the decade as part of the liberalization of Kenya’s telecoms sector as a joint venture between global leader Vodafone of the UK and the government of Kenya, Safaricom has firmly established its credentials as a regional leader, spawning a virtual telecoms revolution in Kenya. With a profit before tax of over 15 billion Kenya shillings and revenue totaling 70 billion Kenya shillings during its last financial year, Safaricom is the region’s most profitable company. Last year, it successfully listed on the Nairobi Stock Exchange through a landmark initial public offering (IPO) and actively trades on the commercials counter. Growing from its cradle in mobile voice services, Safaricom has evolved into a total telecoms company. The firm, which has a subscriber base of over 14 million, offers all telecoms services under one roof: mobile and fixed voice and data services on a variety of platforms: Kenya’s widest 3G network; a growing fibre optic cable footprint and WiMAX technology. For more details please go to: http://www.safaricom.co.ke/index.php?id=19
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