Application economy creates opportunity for Africa
| Oct. 28, 2014, 7:23 a.m.
The application economy has arrived and with it immense business opportunity for Africa.
This is according to Gary Lawrence, MD, CA Southern Africa who says: “We all live in an application economy. Retail, news, entertainment, banking, education, government, communications – everything is driven by a connected, mobile, application-based world where customers are far more likely to experience brand and interact with an enterprise through a software application than a live person.”
Lawrence notes that in order to thrive in this new reality all businesses – regardless of industry sector – are challenged by the need to develop and deliver superior user experiences that engage both customers and staff and all enabled by software.
“This represents a huge opportunity for African businesses”, Lawrence explains – speaking ahead of CA’s African roadshow, which kicks off in Gaborone, Botswana, on the 29th October*.
“Regardless of the size or maturity of the market, the pressures being created by the application economy, across the globe, are tangible to executives everywhere and in every business. These pressures translate into a need for appropriate investment, augmented by understanding of how to: acquire, motivate, and retain, technical talent. This is not an easy task in the African context. In business terms, the application economy provides something of a level playing field as it promotes competition. With the right applications and technology infrastructure, African businesses will not only be able to serve their existing markets better, but also to compete with international players both at home and abroad. Cloud computing and software as a service (SaaS) brings the latest technology within the grasp of even the smallest company, without the expense, delay and risk of investment.
“African businesses can become part of this emerging economic world, but one thing they need to get right first is a solid platform for IT management, including mobile,” Lawrence emphasises. He adds that the application economy allows a company to redefine its business and even its industry, no matter where it’s situated. All that’s needed is access to the right technology backed by the right vision.
“Africa’s up-take of mobile solutions – which has enabled the continent to leapfrog to the latest communications technologies – is a real example of this principle in action. The same thing is possible in preparing for the application economy where a stable, secured and managed IT platform is the ticket to a game where the currency – in this new economic order – is data.”