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South Africa: T-Systems sponsors World Champion Wayde van Niekerk

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Gert Schoonbee Managing Director of T-Systems in South Africa
South Africa: T-Systems sponsors World Champion Wayde van Niekerk.

T- Systems South Africa has revealed that it is sponsoring 400m World Champion, Wayde van Niekerk.

Wayde van Niekerk, a South African track and field sprinter, is renowned for his local and international achievements in the 100m, 200m, and 400m events.

The sponsorship will see T-Systems South Africa support van Niekerk to advance his athletics career and assist to launch the Wayde van Niekerk Foundation, an initiative founded by van Niekerk that will support young South Africans to leverage their talent and create a better life for themselves.

Says Gert Schoonbee, MD at T-Systems South Africa, “We identified a number of synergies that made this sponsorship so meaningful.  Van Niekerk is a South African that studies, lives and trains in South Africa yet competes globally as well as locally and has achieved significant success in both areas. We at T-Systems are locally based with local shareholding, yet draw on our international parent company’s expertise and experience. In addition, we both operate within very fine margins; Milliseconds can mean the difference between winning an international race and coming second. For T-Systems, meeting the criteria in our Service Level Agreements (SLAs) is just as crucial. There is a significant difference between achieving 98% of our SLA and 95% for our customers. We are also both committed to enhancing the human experience and making a difference in peoples’ lives.”

Says van Niekerk, “When T-Systems approached me, offering its support and suggested alignment of our brands, it made perfect sense. Like T-Systems, I work with a strong local team that enables me to compete on a global level and I am committed to representing South Africa just as T-Systems is committed to delivering solutions and services that are tailored to the local market.”

Adds Schoonbee, “Our brand is further aligned with van Niekerk and what he represents as he strives to win, sets new records and makes his mark in a field that is highly competitive. It takes hard work and discipline to be a champion athlete and requires much resilience.  He also sets the bar for himself and this is exactly what T-Systems is doing. Van Niekerk is disrupting the status quo in the field of athletics with his achievements.  Herein lies the parallel with T-Systems as we constantly strive to deliver disruptive solutions and services that underpin our customers’ abilities to in turn, disrupt their markets.”

T-Systems understands that the market is shifting and new technologies such as cloud, mobility, big data and more are, together with increasing customer expectations, fueling the need for companies to create a digitised environment.  Digital transformation is crucial for companies to innovate and significantly reduce ‘time to deliver’ with new products and services.

The cloud is instrumental in achieving this and T-Systems has recently launched a number of new solutions to assist their clients to migrate their infrastructure and applications to the cloud, reducing risk and guaranteeing impressive reductions in total cost of ownership (TCO). T-Systems has also defined a new approach to ICT products and services – referred to as un-outsourcer solutions – that challenges traditional models, further reduces risk and eliminates vendor lock-in.  This game changing approach is disruptive in itself and resonates with van Niekerk and his ‘shake up’ in the field of athletics.

Schoonbee adds, “However, it is not only about winning nor is it all about technology.  We believe that there is a strong connection with the ‘human element’ and this too is what our support of van Niekerk represents. The purpose of technology is to make a positive impact on the human experience, whether it be work or personally related. Central to the ability to connect people, improve their service experience and more is digitisation. It transforms not only business but people’s lives.”

“In addition, we are excited to be involved in assisting to establish the Van Niekerk Foundation.” Van Niekerk will be attending T-Systems “In Touch Technology 2016” events held on the 12th of May 2016 in Johannesburg and on the 19th of May 2016 in Cape Town. For more information, go to

Staff Writer

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