NEC invests in XON to enhance growth in Africa

XONNECofficialsFrom left: Eugene le Roux, president of NEC Africa, Israel Skosana, chairman of XON and Carol Coetzee, CEO of XON. (Image source: XON)NEC Europe has invested in sub-Saharan ICT group Xon to develop an integrated market approach that would accelerate regional growth in a range of high-capacity sectors

After one-and-half-years of exploring joint opportunities, the two companies have identified several collaboration areas such as telecoms, enterprise, energy and government sectors. They would specifically work in networking and security, infrastructure and data centre, information management, cloud, retail, alternative energy, consulting services, public safety and carrier networks.

NEC Europe CEO Naoki Iizuka said, “NEC has been operating in Africa for more than 50 years through its representative offices and partners. Moreover, we enhanced our operation by setting up NEC Africa in 2011. This has enabled us to win many major contracts with government bodies, mobile and fixed operators and blue chip enterprises. With this strategic investment in XON, we’ll be able to meet pent up demand for NEC’s solutions by massively expanding our sub-Sahara African business consulting, systems integration and managed service support footprint as well as sales coverage.”

The African branch of the Japan-based IT service provider has doubled revenues since its creation in 2011, stated XON chairman Israel Skosana, adding that their solutions are ideal to address key issues in energy, environment, food and water. NEC’s “world class solutions”, renowned for reliability in their advanced range of telecoms network infrastructure, public safety, renewable energy and system platform solutions could bring change to Africa, added XON CEO Carel Coetzee.

XON, a level 2 B-BBEE business, designs and operates high performance networks for customers in the fixed and mobile network, public sector, retail and financial services along with providing outsourced services. Once the deal becomes operational, solutions will include NEC’s microwave backhaul, indoor and outdoor 3G/LTE small cells and NetCracker Operational and Billing Support Systems (OSS/BSS) and the portfolio of NEC/NetCracker SDN/NFV solutions. This means that XON can now offer total end-to-end networking solutions from the access layer, transmission, IP Core routing and switching including SDN and NFV solutions, security right through to the management and billing platform provided by NetCracker.

Through the tie-up with XON, NEC Europe is in a better position to bring these solutions to Africa. Benefits of the deal include the reinforcement of NEC South Africa’s B-BBEE credentials to Level 3, and customers in the region gaining use of XON’s network operations centre (NOC) and security operations centre (SOC). There is also a wider regional synergy around sharing IP and security competencies across Europe, Middle East, Africa and Russia, added officials from NEC Europe.

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