SAP on the move in Africa
The potential that exists within mobile-hungry, fast-growing markets - like Bangladesh andNigeria - has captured the attention of bigwigs at SAP.
Mobile applications, business analytics, big data and cloud computing. These have been listed as key market segments driving SAP business across the continent – and, as the global business software company celebrates its 40th year of operation, there is a sense of expectation and vigour with which the company plans to engage these markets.
Mobile applications designed to make a difference in the way businesses service clients and contribute towards positive socio-economic change are a priority on SAP’s agenda.
SAP is looking to expand on its traditional provision of back-end transactional systems for business and stamp its influence on the advent of applications on mobile platforms that the company anticipates will grow significantly and continue to add value to business operators and consumers.
There are mobile applications that can be used on iPhones and other smart devices in the US to help authorities in the public sector reinforce service delivery. There are those that can be offered to retailers to help consumers with a virtual tour of the premises and a total view of the products on sale.
There are mobile applications that are designed to add value to the healthcare sector by offering medical professionals a platform for the safe and easily accessible storage of patient data, all relevant medical files and information.
SAP senior executives also spoke of the company’s HANA backbone platform that has been launched to help companies, including SMEs, with real-time business management capability to access and manage their data effectively.
Sanjay Poonen, President and Corporate Officer of the Product Go-to-Market Division and Head of the Mobile Division for SAP AG, said that 60% of the world’s GDP runs through a SAP system of some kind.
He mentioned that SAP is focusing on dashboard, digital conferencing and other technologies that are contributing to the growth of the business analytics and mobile industries.
“SAP is investing in key industries that are important and strategic to specific regions. For example, mining, manufacturing and retail in South Africa, oil and gas in Nigeria, and we are also doing business with Kenya,” he added.
The company is also behind training and skills development initiatives that have been established to equip learners to enter the ICT and telecommunications industries.
Poonen, together with several company representatives, officially opened the SAP laboratory at the CIDA ICT Academy Lyndhurst campus in June.
CIDA is a free university for students from disadvantaged communities. The ICT academy currently offers SAP Business One certification to CIDA students.