//Discussing digital transformation in Africa
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Discussing digital transformation in Africa

IEC Telecom Group and Kenyan technology company Ostatech hold reception to discuss digital transformation in AfricaAs an increasing number of countries in Africa are emerging as digital economies, the continent is poised to become the next great manufacturing center of the world

Digitalisation ensures a more sustainable and affordable option for continuity of operations. With Kenya quickly becoming a tech hub for East Africa, connectivity is crucial to empower business owners with increased opportunities for entrepreneurship and state-of-the-art hybrid technologies. Ostatech Limited, a leading information and technology company in Kenya, in partnership with IEC Telecom Group, an international satellite telecommunications provider, held a reception in Kenya that was attended by prominent stakeholders from the government, business community, and satcom industry.

This was preceeded by the official signing of a partnership deal between Ostatech Limited and IEC Telecom Group to offer comprehensive connectivity options to businesses in Kenya and East Africa. The reception centered on digital transformation opportunities in Africa and potential collaborations between the government and business community.

As an increasing number of countries in Africa are emerging as digital economies, the continent is poised to become the next great manufacturing center of the world. While high labour intensity, higher productivity, lower costs, and exportability are attracting industries such as agriculture, information technology, tourism, and renewable energy to Africa, it has become even more apparent just how critical a communication infrastructure is to optimise these industrial processes.

Kenya is one of the fastest-growing economies in Sub-Saharan Africa. With heavy investments in ICT and telecom infrastructure, businesses and government bodies are expected to save over Ksh 5 billion in capital with such partnerships between local and global technology companies.

Connectivity is crucial for efficient, affordable, and safe business processes. Digitalisation can empower business owners with substantially reduced infrastructure investments and state-of-the-art hybrid technologies. It is almost a virtuous circle to see innovations in technology creating opportunities for increased entrepreneurship, and increased incentives for doing business in Kenya creating the demand for more connectivity,” shared Oscar Mwai, Chief Executive Officer, Ostatech Limited.

Satellite connectivity solutions enable integration of the latest technologies with existing government infrastructure, thus, allowing for the provision of e-government services based on big data, AI, and advanced cybersecurity. “Besides optimising e-government services and offering reliable back-up for the GSM network, this partnership aims to provide a wide portfolio of satcom solutions that ensure continuity of operations for election infrastructure as well as portability to support military missions. Our specialised teams offer customisation, technical support, and 24/7 consultancy to empower government services across the whole spectrum of operations they handle on a day-to-day basis,” said Mr. Mwai.

The reception unfolded into in-depth discussions centered on the digital transformation of Africa and unlocking the business opportunities arising from an increasingly connected continent. According to the African Space Industry Annual Report 2019, satellite communications generate approximately US$ 6.5 billion in Africa annually.

Dr. Olufunso Somorin, Regional Principal Officer, African Development Bank (AfDB.org), said, “This partnership is key since it creates economic opportunities and incentives for entrepreneurship in Kenya and Africa as a result of investments in innovative infrastructure technologies and satellite communications by these two companies. We’re looking forward to more events such as these to keep the momentum for economic growth up with increased collaborations between the government and business community.”

56% of Kenya’s population is young, lending itself to tech-savvy opportunities in e-learning, remote work, and e-health services. “Satellite connectivity enables educators to teach via videoconferencing and offers children in, otherwise, isolated communities with access to learning materials. It allows remote offices or workers even in areas with no GSM coverage with the ability to access employment opportunities as well as the flexibility of continuing operations no matter where they’re located. And, satellite connectivity also allows field missions, mobile telemedicine hubs, real-time consultations, and accurate healthcare records to be available in communities that may be otherwise unreachable. ” shared Alaa Alsadi, Business Development Director – Middle East & Africa, IEC Telecom Group.

Digitalisation is the gateway to high yields, profitability, and sustainability in the oil and gas as well as agriculture sector with IoT, M2M, and tracking solutions. “We create a dedicated virtual environment for digital operations to ensure the safety of workers and efficient management of resources. We’ve partnered with Ostatech Limited in Kenya to offer such customised functions for optimised business processes,” said Mr. Alsadi. “We offer comprehensive connectivity options over GSM and satellite communications to ensure the safety, security, and continuity of businesses in Kenya. Our tracking and monitoring solutions are designed for a variety of functions as per the needs of our customers so that they can fully benefit from digitalisation.Whether it is high-value asset transport applications or health equipment, we have witnessed amazing transformations in the way our customers operate due to truly innovative technologies and affordable connectivity,” he added.

In an unpredictable and ever-evolving global business environment, digitalisation ensures a more sustainable, efficient, and affordable option for continuity of operations. With Kenya’s expected 5% economic growth annually, digital technologies are sure to empower the entrepreneurial spirit of Africa. •