Bold company Incentro credited for growth in Google Cloud adoption in Africa

DigiCloud Africa has credited Incentro Africa for its role in expanding Google Cloud in Africa and subsequently being recognised as the Google Cloud Expansion Partner of the Year – Europe, Middle East, and Africa. 

The annual award recognises one global partner in the region that has shown outstanding success in helping a large number of customers achieve better results through the Google Cloud Platform and Google Workspace. 

Incentro Africa (founded 2017), announced in 2020 that it had achieved the Work Transformation – Enterprise Partner Specialization in the Google Cloud Partner Specialization Program, becoming the first and only premier partner with this specialization in Africa. 

By earning the Partner Specialization, we proved our expertise and success in deploying Google Workspace to enterprise organizations, which includes providing services across all project work streams – such as technical implementation, change management, training and ongoing premium support.

Our continued collaboration with DigiCloud has yielded many successes with key clients such as Central Bank of West Africa (Google Workspace) , Textbook Center (SAP on Google Cloud) and Britam (Workspace).

“We are proud to have been credited by DigiCloud as one of their key partners in achieving this truly prestigious award – the first for an African organization no less.” said Dennis de Weerd, Sales Director, Incentro Africa. “Our continued partnership is truly a special one and look forward to many more shared successes.” he continued.

“Whilst the complete list of resellers would be too lengthy to mention, three companies were monumental in their efforts through 2020 to drive Google Cloud adoption in Africa, namely: Incentro Africa, for work in Kenya and Senegal specialising in workforce transformation, machine learning and infrastructure…” Gregory MacLennan, CEO, DigiCloud.

About Incentro

Incentro delivers innovative digital solutions, grounded by passion and happiness of employees, Incentronauts. 340 Incentronauts worldwide (The Netherlands, Spain, Kenya) are helping organizations to reach their digital goals.

Based on the maturity of clients, they setup an e-commerce environment which enables customers to deliver an awesome shopping journey and drive growth. They deliver a full range of services from strategy until conversion optimization for B2C and B2B focussed companies

Incentro Africa opened her door in Nairobi, Kenya, in 2017; The takeout on things was special: the company aimed for the delivery of fairtrade software solutions in Nairobi, the capital of Kenya. Our mission? To positively impact the lives of 10.000 Africans before the year 2022.

We continue to achieve this by bringing quality services and digital solutions to the (East) African market, supported by strong partnerships and growing local talent into product experts. We help organizations in developing their Cloud digital strategies in order to increase productivity and collaboration. We achieve this through our value propositions and expertise in enterprise collaboration, cloud migration, and developing smart applications.

Are you bold enough to step into the unknown? We are… and we dare you to do the same. We will be with you every step of the way. Not by making small changes but to truly do things differently – for a change!

With over 10 years of proven expertise in technical consultation and related services, Incentro, the only Google Premier Partner in East, West and Central Africa has become the go-to partner for successful business transformation in the continent.

From Enterprise Collaboration, Cloud Migration and Smart application development, we proudly serve over 26 countries in Africa and are growing. Whatever your ambition is, we’ll aim for maximum impact. We dive deep into your organization, challenge your plans, build solutions swiftly and make sure they work.

Please feel free to visit our website or send an email to Customer Success Manager Elizabeth Akinyi – liz@incentro.com.

www.incentro.com

www.digicloud.africa

[Africa Cloud Review] Simon Ngunjiri: Cloud is empowering African businesses with the certainty of a quicker time-to-value

The speed with which Africa’s business sector has changed over the past year has been nothing short of astonishing. Business leaders across the continent have had their hands full, from enabling remote work on a previously unprecedented scale to adapting to disruptions in the global supply chain, enabling e-learning for millions of youth – not to mention ensuring business continuity in the midst of a once-in-a-generation crisis.

At the foundation of this change is cloud, which gives organisations the ability to simplify and scale their systems landscape without sacrificing performance.

Cloud, according to Pedro Guerreiro is the Managing Director Central Africa at SAP Africa, empowers businesses with the certainty of a quicker time-to-value, without the upfront capital outlays required of on-premise deployments.

With cloud-enabled intelligent enterprise capabilities, organisations can achieve the speed needed to stay ahead of competitors and other disruptors while maintaining the certainty of measured, data-driven decision-making.

In Africa, cloud adoption has reached new heights, driven in part by the pandemic. Increase in cloud computing has also created an increased demand for cloud-related skills and we are currently in a cycle where the global demand for cloud skills outstrips the supply. 

Just last week, The African Telecommunications Union (ATU), a specialized agency of the African Union (AU) and China’s technology firm, Huawei signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to boost capacity for ICT transformation in the continent which includes providing cloud solutions.  AAR Insurance also  inked a deal with telecommunications provider Safaricom to migrate to the cloud. In South Africa, Vox, a market-leading end-to-end integrated ICT and infrastructure provider and telecoms company selected Minim Cloud Software to Deliver Its Next-Gen Home WiFi Experience.

Still, in South Africa, HPE announced that it has brought a new multi-cloud Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) data centre solution to the South African market. This powerful multi-cloud data centre model is all about leveraging the cloud to define the customer experience, while underpinned by HPE’s GreenLake platform.

This plus other cloud news updates from across Africa shows how IT leaders are going all-in on cloud. 

Incentro Africa, a cloud service provider which works exclusively with Google Cloud, most African businesses are moving to the cloud because it is more secure, scalable, and more affordable. Large enterprises unburden their IT department from maintaining infrastructure and enable them to contribute to business goals. For startups, it’s a cheap and convenient way to get started and use amazing technology that is only available on the Cloud.

Simon Ngunjiri Muraya is Google Cloud Architect at Incentro Africa.

[Africa Cloud Review] Simon Ngunjiri: Cloud adoption has reached new heights

Driven in part by the pandemic, cloud computing adoption across Africa has reached new heights. Globally, Enterprise spending on cloud infrastructure bypassed spending on data center hardware and software for the first time in 2020 according to the latest data from Synergy Research Group.

The data shows that enterprise spending on cloud infrastructure services (IaaS, PaaS, and hosted private cloud combined) grew by 35% to reach almost $130 billion in 2020, while enterprise spending on data center hardware and software dropped by 6% to less than $90 billion over the same period.

In Africa,  mass movement to remote work and increasing uptake of digital communications tools has led to increased adoption of cloud. ID had already predicted this rise to happen in 2021 noting that Migration to cloud will help fuel a 2.8% growth in IT spending in the Middle East, Africa and Turkey this year, after a slump due to the pandemic. 

This migration has certainly revolutionized the way African enterprises conduct their businesses, offering various benefits such as cost-effective access to computing power, on-demand applications, and services among others. Cloud-based office applications have increasingly become vital components of the African modern workplace. 

In 2020, IT spending was hit hard by the pandemic and declined by 4.9% in the META region, according to IDC. The crisis caused by the pandemic, though, appears to have accelerated plans for digital transformation and related projects such as migration to cloud technology.

“The COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent economic fallout has accelerated digital transformation across the region, spurring unprecedented demand for contactless services, cloud solutions, and collaboration applications,” Jyoti Lalchandani, vice president and regional managing director at IDC says. 

Spending on public cloud services in the region according to IDC will grow 26.7% to top $3.7 billion. Spending on SaaS, PaaS, and IaaS will grow 24.5%, 30.6%, and 30.7%, respectively, according to the company. In addition, spending on professional cloud services will grow rapidly to total $1.6 billion.

Hybrid cloud has specifically provided enterprises in Africa with a trusted and capable foundation to adapt to changing market needs.  Hybrid cloud offers business and IT leaders the chance to meet changing business demands head-on. While continuity and business resilience are fundamental, improving customer experiences and growing revenues still features highly on the list of business objectives.

Simon Ngunjiri Muraya is Google Cloud Architect at Incentro Africa.

VOGSY and Incentro partnership to boost productivity and profitability in the services industry in Africa


VOGSY
, the quote-to-cash Professional Services Automation solution built for Google Workspace users, and Incentro Africa, the Nairobi-based branch of the full digital service company called Incentro, announced today their new partnership.

Through VOGSY’s global Partner Program, Incentro Africa will help its customers across Africa harness VOGSY’s unique Google Workspace integrated platform to run their quote-to-cash operations and enhance productivity and profitability. The partnership will also expand VOGSY’s global reach.

A Google Cloud premier partner, Incentro Africa specializes in enterprise work transformation services enhanced by Google Cloud. Incentro Africa is proactive in always looking for new partnerships and solutions to benefit customers and boost their productivity even further. Many of Incentro’s existing customers were looking for a fully integrated solution at an affordable price and Incentro aims to provide this through its partnership with VOGSY. According to Dennis de Weerd, Incentro Africa’s CEO, supplying VOGSY’s ERP system to Incentro Africa’s customers represents a major advantage in transforming their productivity, team collaboration and efficiency. 

“VOGSY gives our customers the ability to streamline and manage their quote-to-cash processes from all sales, operations and accounting sides with a single tool that integrates with Gmail, Drive, Docs, Sheets and Slides, achieving the ultimate real-time collaboration and transparency throughout service delivery,” de Weerd said.

As the only Professional Services Automation platform created for Google Workspace as well as the leading quote-to-cash ERP solution, VOGSY is a singular tool that packs significant value for services firms. Elimination of destructive work silos, intuitive UX, real-time business data including project budgets, margins and financial KPIs as well as built-in scalability and security are some of the main benefits VOGSY’s CEO Mark van Leeuwen aims to bring to Incentro Africa’s professional services customers.

“As professional services firms undertake digital transformations, they require forward-thinking partners and access to tools that provide actionable data and real collaboration whether they’re two feet or continents apart. VOGSY is proud to align with the like-minded professionals at Incentro Africa and work together to ensure the efficiency, profitability and sustainability of services firms in the digital era.”

Plan, track and optimize your clients, deals, projects, resources and revenue all within the comforts of the Google Interface you know and trust. Try for free here.



With over 10 years of proven expertise in technical consultation and related services, Incentro, the only Google Premier Partner in East, West and Central Africa has become the go-to partner for successful business transformation in the continent.

From Enterprise Collaboration, Cloud Migration and Smart application development, we proudly serve over 26 countries in Africa and are growing. Whatever your ambition is, we’ll aim for maximum impact. We dive deep into your organization, challenge your plans, build solutions swiftly and make sure they work.

Please feel free to visit our website or send an email to Customer Success Manager Elizabeth Akinyi – liz@incentro.com.

www.incentro.com
www.vogsy.com

[Africa Cloud Review] Simon Ngunjiri: Cloud computing is the technological revolution of the twenty-first century

One of the key drivers of Africa’s cloud computing boom is the unquestionable benefits the technology brings to the ICT sector. 

For some African sub-regions, the cloud computing model has already come to represent a solution to IT under-equipment problems, and the trends indicate that this model is set for major development provided certain accompanying measures are taken in a timely manner. 

Cloud computing, considered by some to be the technological revolution of the twenty-first century, could go a long way towards resolving such issues, provided the corresponding technology is implemented on solid bases that inspire confidence in users both domestic and foreign.  This is according to the cloud computing report by ITU. 

The report notes that the experience of African countries to date points to cloud computing technology being used at different levels according to the institutions concerned.

‘’Indeed, while a given administration may only now be preparing to introduce this new technology, it may well be the case that 50 per cent of the country’s ICT operators have begun to implement or are already using it’’ the report says. 

Nick Treurnicht, the Customer Engineer for Google Workspace at DigiCloud Africa, agrees with this in a recent interview with Africa Business Communities. 

‘’Africa has tremendous skills in IT engineering.  At the start of the pandemic and the lockdown in 2020, we saw many companies running legacy systems rush to deploy Google Workspace.  Most of the companies already running Workspace didn’t have a hard time picking up their laptops and working from home.  We even saw an increase in productivity instead of a decrease, as most business owners and managers feared.’’ Nick says. 

As we have mentioned in a previous cloud review article, in Africa, cloud remains a key part in shaping how Africa will grow when it comes to technological infrastructure.  It has the potential to transform economic activities considering its inherent pay-per usage model, flexibility and scalability features. 

As IDC also notes, cloud adoption is no longer merely an option; indeed, it is a necessity that promises tremendous rewards across entire organizations. As the region’s enterprises dramatically accelerate their digital transformation journeys, they need to embrace the power of cloud computing and its holy grail – frictionless, hybrid multi-cloud that provides infrastructure-agnostic views and unified management capabilities across all clouds and even legacy data centres. 

Simon Ngunjiri Muraya is Google Cloud Architect at Incentro Africa

Incentro Africa becomes first company in Africa to achieve Google Cloud Partner Work Transformation Specialization

Incentro Africa, an IT service provider delivering custom build software solutions for the European and African market, is leveraging its novel cloud solutions to enhance the capacity and efficiency of businesses. This, as it migrates thousands of employees into integrated suite of applications as they adapt to the new normal in the wake of disruptions occasioned by COVID 19.

As demand for solutions that embrace remote operations burgeons, Incentro Africa has been working with banks, government institutions and businesses by deploying cloud-based solutions like Google Workspace and Chromebooks and Cloud infrastructure that have bolstered security and enabled companies to cut operational costs.

To showcase its expertise, Incentro is proud to announce that it has  achieved the Google Cloud Partner “Work Transformation” Specialization, a development that gives any organisation looking to deploy collaboration solutions, the confidence that  with Incentro, they are in experienced hands and best placed to provide  services across all project work streams – such as technical implementation, change management, training and ongoing premium support.

The Google Enterprise Work Transformation Specialization is the highest level of technical achievement for a Google Workspace Partner.   The specialization indicates success deploying Google Workspace to Enterprise organizations, which includes providing services for establishing governance, technical implementation, training people, processes, and support.

Dennis de Weerd, CEO, Incentro Africa: “Being a Google Premier Partner is great, because it shows top level expertise on Google Cloud. Having a Specialization is even better, since it really proves our domain knowledge. While Google Cloud is very broad, this specialization emphasizes our expertise in guiding enterprises to a cloud-native workplace, so customers know they are catered for fully according to Google Cloud’s high standards. It embodies the investments and dedication from an experienced team.”

Customer success

At the height of the pandemic, Incentro Africa, working with the Africa Google Cloud Distributor Digicloud Africa, partnered with The Central Bank of West Africa States to roll out Google Workplace in seven days for the 1300 employees located across eight countries without interrupting service or productivity. This resulted in increasing customer and employee satisfaction with a more connected but remote workforce.

Tiéguélé A. Coulibaly,Chief Information Officer, Central Bank of West Africa States: “Google has given Central Bank of West African States employees a different way to work. Remote workers now have expanded and highly efficient ways of accessing and collaborating on the go. We’ve saved 40% on total per-user cost, reduced IT hours spent maintaining our environment, have had 60% fewer email related tickets, complied with our Industry’s data protection regulations, and on top of that we’ve had no downtime in the last 6 months.”

Kenya’s Kilifi County was among the first to record cases of COVID-19. To tame further spread the county government encouraged its staff and the public to work from home.

Partnering with Incentro Africa, the County  government introduced Google collaboration solution that enabled its workforce to collaborate efficiently irrespective of where they were working from. To ensure that the governor was in constant communication with his staff and updating the county on the steps the government were taking to manage the virus, he seamlessly leveraged the power of Google hangouts to hold virtual meetings with his cabinet, with impressive results.

Hon. Amason Kingi, Governor, County Government of Kilifi: “This enabled us to quickly make decisions and resolutions on where to set up the Isolation Centres for COVID-19 victims, brief the publicH on our Corona preparedness, and how we can join hands to curb the spread of the virus.”

African financial services provider SBM Bank Group upon its entry in Kenya in 2017 and acquiring Fidelity Bank and Chase Bank explored ways of consolidating domains into one. Collaborating with Incentro, the bank moved 950 users from Chase Bank and 160 from Fidelity Bank to SBN Bank in less than a week.

Sahil Arya, VP and Head of IT, SBM Bank of Kenya:“The G Suite experience is seamless, the ease with which the products are integrated gives our employees the power to achieve anything they needed.” .

As more companies embrace cloud computing due to its proven record in fostering business continuity during a time of crisis, Incentro Africa is looking to work with partners in addressing the future of work needs.

Gregory MacLennanCEO, Digicloud Africa: “Cloud computing is pivotal in empowering many organizations to continue operating through an unprecedented crisis that could have easily brought many to their knees. Overnight, companies had to adapt to a completely different way of working.  For many organizations, cloud technology has been vital in facilitating the shift to remote working. Without the cloud affording employees the ability to securely connect business continuity would simply not have been possible.  Cloud computing enabled companies across Africa to survive, and is now a catalyst for those same companies to thrive and innovate.”

www.incentro.com

[Africa Cloud Review] Simon Ngunjiri: Cloud adoption is the future of African SMEs

In our previous Africa Cloud Review report, we highlighted how cloud adoption is no longer merely an option but a necessity that promises tremendous rewards across entire organizations.

Africa is currently witnessing a revolution in new cloud and data centre capacity, with a growth forecast of 80 per cent and 50 per cent. In fact, Xalam Analytics has previously noted that African data centres are the hottest growth area in the African ICT market. 

The emergence of cloud in Africa as the Cloud Over Africa report by Research ICT Africa report notes is viewed as a natural extension of the deployment of advanced IT technologies by high-end users in both the consumer and enterprise services markets.

‘’Much of the hype around cloud computing in Africa is as a result of the adoption of high-end technology and software industries such as financial services, oil and gas; and of advanced next-generation networks by the telecommunications operators.’’ the report says.

This is of course something we have mentioned in the previous cloud review article we have published here. From fintech companies that are changing the way Africans send and receive money, to Agriculture, cloud technology has the power to transform how we work in emerging markets. 

SMEs and public services stand to gain the most from the adoption of cloud services, which provides immediate access to the infrastructure and services previously only available to big enterprises able to invest heavily in IT. 

As Soromfe Uzomah, Head of Strategic Partnerships at Microsoft 4Afrika Initiative notes Cloud computing gives businesses the ability to scale, cost-effectively, to new markets. This is particularly beneficial for SMEs, who often lacked the resources or infrastructure to expand before.

Pedro Guerreiro, Managing Director, Central Africa at SAP, also notes that investments into new technologies like cloud will greatly assist SMEs in the region as they adapt to a very different operating environment.

 “As one of the most important drivers for job creation and economic growth, the SME sector is vital to the region’s economic recovery. Technology will continue to play a determining role in how well the sector recovers from this year’s events, while also digitally-tooling organisations to out-perform their competitors in this new economy and enabling them to execute the business, operate, and thrive in the market,” he says.

Currently, most of these SMEs are struggling to survive in an ongoing global recession. Cloud offers many opportunities and could help companies to improve their business and use technology more efficiently. 

The Cloud Computing: Adoption Issues for Sub-Saharan African SMEs report envisages that as cloud computing evolves, more SMEs in sub-Saharan Africa will adopt it as an IT Strategy. This could positively contribute to the successes of these SMEs and consequently, contribute to the economic growth desired by these developing countries.

Bottomline, cloud platforms are the future of African SMEs. This Digital transformation is imperative for these SMEs, as it enables them to streamline back-office operations and free up time and resources to focus on their core business.

Simon Ngunjiri Muraya is Google Cloud Architect at Incentro Africa

www.incentro.com/en-ke

[Africa Cloud Computing Review] Simon Ngunjiri Muraya: Looking ahead

The demand for cloud in Africa is growing rapidly. This demand has particularly been accelerated by the ongoing pandemic that has moved everything online.

With increasing connectivity and availability of reliable and cheap internet across the continent, it has changed the way people work.


Increased Cloud adoption

‘’Cloud is a leapfrog technology, comparable to the introduction of the mobile phone and we are just at the beginning of it. Especially now the pandemic we’ve seen a major uptake in the use of cloud-based solutions, by even the most traditional companies.’’ Dennis de Weerd, CEO at Incentro Africa, told Africa Business Communities during a recent interview.

Incentro Africa is an IT service provider delivering custom-built cloud-based software solutions for the European and African market.

Much of the hype around cloud in Africa is as a result of the adoption of high-end technology and software across different industries as well as advanced next-generation networks by telecommunications operators across different African countries.

‘’For instance, we migrated the Central Bank of West African States to Google Cloud based productivity suite Workspace in less than a week when a lockdown was looming. From working with traditional infrastructure from a central office to a highly secure cloud-based productivity suite that allowed their staff to work from home and boost their productivity with easy to use tools. So there are a few drivers here that boosted the uptake, but it was already unavoidable that this new way of working is the standard.’’ Dennis said.

Cloud computing and economic growth

Cloud  computing has the potential to significantly bolster economic growth through the provision of cost savings and efficiencies, including the cost of management of data and security.

Africa’s cloud services industry may still be in its infancy, but it’s now  showing signs of growth. According to Xalam Analytics’ The Rise of the African Cloud report, only five African countries were considered “cloud ready” in 2018. However, another 11 of the 20 remaining nations were “on the cusp” of being ready to adopt the cloud.

Looking ahead, there’re so many cloud computing that we expect to loom large, especially in 2019.

African Cloud Market

Forrester Research notes that the global public cloud infrastructure market will grow 35 percent to $120 billion in 2021, as the cloud continues to “take centre stage” in the recovery from the pandemic. In Africa, Xalam Analytics estimates that the continent’s ICT industry will see its revenues surge to $2 billion by 2023, with the cloud leading this growth.

What does this mean for cloud service providers?

Dennis de Weerd, CEO at Incentro Africa: ‘’For us, it means we are substantially investing in technical knowledge and growing our team of certified Cloud consultants rapidly so we are ready when it does. It’s good to understand that when we started in Kenya there were no certified Google Cloud Architects in the whole country, so in order to offer this service, we need to train and certify talented technical consultants to do this work.’’

Demand for Data Centers

Africa is currently facing an uneven data centers deficit. More than two-thirds of the continent’s capacity sitting within South Africa. Egypt, Nigeria, Kenya, and Morocco also have larger concentrations of facilities compared to most of the countries on the continent. Mauritius has an outsized number of data centers compared to its size and population, especially compared to neighbouring Madagascar.

Xalam estimates nearly half of Sub-Saharan Africa’s economic output and broadband connections are served by just 10 per cent of existing data center supply. The report says 15 countries have a deficit between 5MW and 10MW of data center capacity, with 20 facing a capacity deficit higher than 10MW.

“At the onset of a new decade, it is increasingly acknowledged that Africa needs a lot more data center capacity than is currently available,” says the Growing Africa’s Data Center Ecosystem: An Assessment Of Utility Requirements report.

Cloud and digital transformation

Cloud Computing empowers digital business transformation and for businesses to remain competitive, they must embrace cloud and other digital transformation processes.

The world is continuously evolving and African companies need to drive their activities to new forms of tech such as cloud.

Bottomline, as the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) says in its Cloud Computing in Africa Situation and perspectives report, the experience of African countries to date points to cloud computing technology being used at different levels.

‘’Indeed, while a given administration may only now be preparing to introduce this new technology, it may well be the case that 50 per cent of the country’s ICT operators have begun to implement or are already using it’’
Simon Ngunjiri Muraya
 is Google Cloud Architect at Incentro Africa

www.incentro.com/en-ke