03.27.18

Activate Group and SqwidNet sign IoT partnership agreement

BY Fast Company 2 MINUTE READ

Activate Group and SqwidNet sign IoT partnership agreement

Activate Group, an end-to-end Internet of Things (IoT), mobile solutions and IoT-as-a-service provider, has signed a partnership with SqwidNet, the licensed Sigfox IoT network operator in South Africa. Sigfox, a global IoT network, has established an ecosystem reaching 45 countries. Through SqwidNet, the network currently reaches 81% of the population in South Africa, with a target of reaching 85% by mid-2018.

The partnership will see Activate Group roll out 14 pilot projects in the retail and logistics vertical with an estimated roll out of more than 100 000 units on SqwidNet’s network by 2019.

“This is a significant milestone for us,” says Rodney Taylor, Chief Executive Officer at Activate Group. “We have seen significant interest in our IoT solutions in the market and through this partnership, we will be able to bring them to life. SqwidNet’s extensive coverage has given us the ability to reach clients in areas we were unable to before the partnership,” he says.

Gartner forecasts that the number of connected things will grow to nearly 21 billion by 2020 and International Data Corporation (IDC) predicts that the worldwide IoT market will grow to $1.7 trillion in the same year, representing a significant opportunity for every industry in the world.

“Partnering with Activate Group enables us to leverage on their capability and existing IoT platform solutions to further the digitalisation efforts that are underway in South Africa,” says Reshaad Sha, Chief Executive Officer at SqwidNet.

“While IoT has been a buzz word for a long time, we are seeing it come to life now, as our clients are now being able to take advantage of strategic IoT and mobile technologies that drive innovation, agility and creates new revenue opportunities while giving them a competitive edge,” says Taylor.

Budget constraints are often an inhibitor for mainstream IoT projects. “Our IoT-as-a-service solution offers flexible, affordable financing options that enable system integrators and end-user companies to adopt and implement those technology solutions that give them the competitive edge in business while optimising their cash flow and return on their technology investments,” he says.

About Activate Group

Activate Group helps African organisations unleash the full potential of the Internet of Things (IoT) and the latest wave of disruptive mobile technologies. As an end-to-end IoT and mobile solutions provider, we work with our clients to identify their needs and enable them to take advantage of strategic technologies that drive innovation, agility and a competitive edge.

Our solutions span industries as diverse as hospitality, logistics, financial services, and manufacturing. They are especially powerful and valuable to companies that have sizeable distributed workforces or customer basis, or large networks of brokers or independent agents.

Visit the stand E2 at IoT Forum Africa to see what Activate Group can do for your organisation.

For more information, please visit www.activategroup.co.za.

 

About SqwidNet

SqwidNet was launched in November 2016 as the Sigfox operator in SA.  It has successfully deployed a low-cost, low-power, ultra narrowband IoT network in South Africa. The company began through a partnership between Dark Fibre Africa (DFA) and global IoT operator Sigfox. Sigfox today has presence in 45 countries through similar partnerships and covers over 800 million people with a Sigfox network. The SqwidNet network in South Africa currently covers 81% of the South African population and will cover 85% by mid 2018, enabling millions of physical devices to be connected to the digital world and bringing the IoT to life.

Visit the SqwidNet stand at IoT Forum Africa for more information.

For more information, please visit www.sqwidnet.com.

03.08.18

2018 Entrepreneur of the Year Competition

BY john 3 MINUTE READ

SA’S PREMIER ENTREPRENEURIAL COMPETITION MARKS 30 YEARS OF CELEBRATING ENTREPRENEURIAL EXCELLENCE

Cape Town, 07 March 2018: Amid the current political optimism, entrepreneurs should be especially inspired by the continued commitment to SME support which emerged as a consistent theme in both the 2018 State of the Nation Address and the National Budget Speech. This is according to Kobus Engelbrecht, spokesperson for the 2018 Entrepreneur of the Year® competition sponsored by Sanlam and BUSINESS/PARTNERS, who believes that this continued focus evidences Government’s recognition of the vital role played by entrepreneurs in enabling economic growth.

Speaking in light of the launch of the 2018 competition in Cape Town today, Engelbrecht says that this long-deserved recognition of the SME sector only further validates the competition’s unwavering commitment to celebrating excellence in entrepreneurship and fostering future economic growth.

“Now in our 30th year, this renowned competition continues to pay homage to the fearless South African entrepreneurs who dedicate themselves to their enterprises and businesses: driving growth, combating unemployment and contributing towards the country’s economic development. It is therefore wonderful to see the public sector taking the required steps to improving the environment in which these entrepreneurs operate in order to promote further growth in the sector.”

Christo Botes, executive director at Business Partners Limited (BUSINESS/PARTNERS) has been involved in the competition since its inception in 1988, “Looking back over the last 30 years, this competition has evolved from an internal competition that recognized BUSINESS/PARTNERS’ clients only, to a nation-wide search for outstanding South African-based entrepreneurs, with Sanlam as our valued partner.”

He says that the competition continues to reward successful local business owners for the valuable contributions they make to grow their local communities and economies, and aims to inspire others to do the same. “As our 30th- anniversary year, we’re hoping to see even more entrepreneurs enter. The competition is open to all South African-based businesses and prizes are awarded for the following categories: Overall Entrepreneur of the Year®, Emerging Business Entrepreneur of the Year®, Small Business Entrepreneur of the Year®, Medium Business Entrepreneur of the Year®, Job Creator of the Year and Innovator of the Year,” says Botes.

Engelbrecht adds that this year, the 2018 competition will also recognize a South African entrepreneur for a Lifetime Achievement award. “The purpose of this specially nominated award is to recognize an entrepreneur who has made a significant contribution to the South Africa economy and has grown their business from start-up to large-scale, perhaps even multi-national corporation. We want to reward the individuals who have dedicated their lives to building our economy and inspiring others to do the same.”

The 2018 Entrepreneur of the Year® competition, sponsored by Sanlam and BUSINESS/PARTNERS, offers prizes valued at over R 2 million, which includes cash prizes of R 70 000 for each main category winner, and R200 000 for the overall winner. Competition winners will also receive valuable mentorship support, networking opportunities and national media exposure.

Engelbrecht says that in celebrating 30 years of searching for entrepreneurial talent in all sectors of the economy, the competition remains fiercely committed to its cause in 2018. “The judges are looking for entrepreneurs that have succeeded against the odds, either by carving out a niche market for their product or service offering, or by succeeding in a very competitive environment. Perseverance and endurance, innovation and agility are some of the qualities we look for in the entrepreneur.”

Engelbrecht adds that there are also a number of quantitative competition measures, such as turnover growth, profitability, owners’ equity growth, positive cash flows and job creation that play a part in the competition’s judging process.

Entrepreneurs are encouraged to enter the competition and can do so by downloading the entry form online at www.eoy.co.za. They can also interact with fellow entrepreneurs, past winners and entrants on the competition’s social media platforms www.twitter.com/@EOY_SA and www.facebook.com/EOY.SA. The closing date for the competition is 31 May 2018.

About Entrepreneur of the Year® competition sponsored by Sanlam and BUSINESS/PARTNERS:

The Entrepreneur of the Year® competition sponsored by Sanlam and BUSINESS/PARTNERS aims to honour, benefit and uplift South African SMEs. Now in its 30th year, the competition celebrates excellence in entrepreneurship, serving as an inspiration to others to succeed in the world of business. Visit www.eoy.co.za for more information.