When organizations want to host their content, they look for a hosting platform that gives them efficient, high speed, and cost-effective service, so their content can be accessed quickly.
But while businesses and agencies in Nigeria have this same expectation, many unwittingly opt for service providers that cost them this speed and cost-effectiveness they crave. They host their data with foreign data centers.
Several consequences follow from hosting with foreign service providers. Upload and download times could be slower because the data centers are far away from the business that stores and accesses the data. There are data sovereignty issues as well; it’s not always clear whether it’s the business’s home country or the data center’s host country that has administrative rights over the data.
There’s another problem that businesses get exposed to when they use foreign hosting platforms. It’s a problem with unstable currency exchange rates.
The Exchange Rate Problem
Organizations also have to pay for the hosting services provided from beyond their borders in foreign currency. If a company in Nigeria hosts its content with a cloud firm in the United States, it will pay that firm for its services in dollars.
According to the Nigeria Internet Registration Association (NiRA), the country loses up to ₦60 billion worth of foreign exchange to other countries every year as payments for web hosting services. As of 2016, less than 2% of domain names were registered in Nigeria.
There’s a problem with this. If most establishments with a web presence in Nigeria rely on foreign hosting, they will be exposed to fluctuations in foreign exchange. If the dollar becomes more expensive relative to the naira, they will have to spend more to pay hosting fees.
Let’s explain this with a simple example.
Suppose Company A in Nigeria hosts its website with a hosting firm B in the United States. The Nigerian company A pays the hosting firm B $700 annually for its hosting services.
If the current dollar-naira exchange rate is ₦360 to $1, the Nigerian company will be spending an equivalent of ₦252,000 on hosting in one year.
But if the naira slumps and the exchange rate becomes ₦400 to $1, the Nigerian firm will have to pay ₦280,000 in hosting fees in a year.
That’s a difference of ₦28,000.
How a Fluctuating Exchange Rate Affects Business Hosting Budgets
One thing becomes immediately apparent: companies can’t be sure how much they will have to pay for hosting when they are drawing up their budgets. Even if the cost remains constant in dollar terms, the unstable exchange rate ensures that you can’t be certain about how much naira you will be set aside for it. This uncertainty makes planning difficult and may frustrate the efforts of businesses and agencies to streamline their expenses.
Higher costs also eat into budgets and reduce net business incomes. For organizations that consider their expenditure on this front as significant, a local currency that continually depreciates against the dollar could be eroding their efforts to turn out significant profits.
The Impact of Forex Payments for Hosting on Nigeria’s Economy
The exchange rate problem exerts significant pressure on the wider economic scale. Taken together, local companies are paying millions of dollars in scarce foreign exchange to foreign hosting firms. When these payments are made, Nigeria is left with fewer dollars. And when there are fewer dollars, the demand for them will push their naira-price higher.
Local companies suffer as a result. They may be paying the same rates in dollar terms, but they are spending more naira to make the payment.
In a nutshell, companies that use foreign hosting firms are contributing to a problem that they are already suffering from.
The Remedy: Local Hosting
There’s a solution to the uncertainty, rising costs, and economic problems that foreign hosting brings. It’s called local hosting. Instead of spending dollars on this service, companies in Nigeria can switch to local hosting firms.
Here are some advantages that businesses can gain from local hosting, in terms of exchange rate issues and costs.
- They won’t have to contend with fluctuating rates and the confusion that comes with it. They can simply pay for hosting in naira.
- Rates don’t ‘change’ abruptly. Customers will usually be notified when fees have been reviewed upwards or downwards.
- There’s greater certainty around the costs that the company is incurring.
- The fees are fixed and denominated in naira, so it’s easier to plan and budget.
- The country saves scarce foreign exchange.
There are also other benefits besides the gains from denominating fees in local currency. When you host your data locally, you have more access to it. It’s easier to keep in touch with the hosting platform. Security concerns are diminished. And there’s no concern about data sovereignty.
Local Hosting: What Options Do You Have?
As Nigeria has grown more reliant on data and digital technology, cloud service providers and managed IT service companies have sprung up within its borders to fill the storage and computing needs of its many businesses. Many of these have been around for just a few years. A few have been in operation for much longer.
The quality of service you get from local hosting firms will vary as well. Some can leverage their extensive experience in the Nigerian environment, and provide high-level skill and support to their clients. But this isn’t the case for every player in this space.
Layer3 is one of the long-lived data hosting institutions in Nigeria. For over 14 years, it has helped organizations in the private and public sectors with the data storage and network solutions they need to thrive. And it continues to improve its offerings, as technology evolves and the demands of the IT market change.
Its virtual data centers and servers, backup and disaster recovery services are available to emerging businesses, large corporations, and public sector agencies, and are tailored to suit organizations from a wide range of sectors.
If you would like to find out more about Layer3 and local hosting, you can contact our team here.
Samsung Unveils Technologically Advanced 2020 Consumer Products
Samsung Electronics Nigeria has unveiled its 2020 consumer products range. The launch which held in Victoria Island, Lagos showcased the latest in its revolutionary and innovative QLED and Crystal UHD Television Series along with Wind Free Air Conditioners, Side by Side Refrigerators and Drum Washing Machines.
Keeping with its resolve to utilize its transformative ideas and technologies to shape the future and inspire the whole world, Samsung has once again demonstrated its determination to continuously redefine the living space and entertainment of its customers.
According to Mr. Caden Chiyeon Yu, Managing Director, Samsung Electronics Nigeria, “QLED uses exceptional and revolutionary technology which offers an unparalleled visual and auditory adventure from the comfort of your living room. QLED series is available in 4K or 8K and from 58″ to 98”, and was designed with options to fit any space and budget”. For Crystal UHD Television, Mr. Yu said, with cutting-edge Crystal Display, the new Crystal UHD TV will bring high-resolution content to life in a whole new way, delivering a viewing experience like never before in a mainstream UHD TV.
Also showcased at the launch were the new Windfree Air Conditioner, Drum Washing Machines and Side by Side refrigerators. The Windfree Air Conditioner is designed specially with the latest technology to provide coolness in quick time while ensuring that users don’t experience any chills through out its use. It also has an in-built digital inverter which reduces energy consumption by 73 percent. .
The newly introduced drum washing machine of 2020 from Samsung is very efficient and is built with eco bubble technolgy which allows it to provide cleaning of very dirty garments or clothes without the use of water. Futhermore, the new Side by Side Refrigetor was built with Spacemax technology which has enabled Samsung to offer more spacious interior without increasing the external dimentions or compromising energy efficiency.
Also speaking at the event, Mrs. Oluwaremilekun Adesola-Ogunsan, Head, Consumer Electronics, Samsung Nigeria stated that “Samsung understands the economic diffulties currently being experienced in the country and has consistently produced pocket friendly premium consumer products. We are very consistent in our approach as we understand that our customers like the good things of life and we have provided that without compromising our standards”. “So I can say boldy that there is a Samsung for everybody regardless of your income stream” She added.
In 2019, the Samsung consumer range of products received universal praise for its innovative quality and design and numerous pioneering features. This year Samsung has added even more beneficial features which its customers will appreciate in great deal.
CWG Plc Empowers Small Businesses in Nigeria with SME Solution
Pan-African Information and Communications Technology Company, CWG Plc has said the essence of its Enterprise Resource Planning Solution (SMERP) that runs on the cloud is to empower small and medium enterprises in Nigeria and offer them the required tools to manage their entire business.
Mr. Dolapo Orogbemi, Product Manager for SMERP, who disclosed this recently to the media, noted that with SMEs contributing massively to Nigeria’s economy and creating both direct and indirect jobs, SMERP was designed intentionally to help SMEs thrive.
“Since inception, it has been the number one goal for us here at CWG because we have always identified the potential for SMEs once they are provided with the right support.
Thus, SMERP was designed to make available enabling tools for all SMEs across Africa at a relatively affordable price and to also make their business operations lean where they can save more resources to increase profitability,” he said.
Dolapo explained that in support of SMEs, SMERP has provided an effective ERP tailored to the SME market, providing services such as Inventory Management, E-commerce platform, Accounting, Point of Sale and Customer Relationship Management tool.
He argued that one of the major reasons SMEs don’t survive beyond the early stage of their business is due to inadequate funding to scale the business and this has become a default gap in the SME sector.
But with the CWG’s SMERP solution, SMEs can take proper records of their day-to-day business transactions to present to financial institutions as proof of profitability and project business growth for them.
According to him, SMERP’s competitive edge is based on value to the SMEs where they can have access to a complete ERP solution at an affordable price, stressing that the solution enables each SME with special requirements to execute their business needs.
For more information on SMERP kindly visit www.smerp.ng to start a 14-days free trial.
Encomiums for TD Africa as Nigeria Prepares for Tech Experience Centre Launch
A number of globally renowned Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) in the technology space have commended TD Africa, Sub-Saharan Africa’s leading technology, lifestyle and solutions distributor for successfully birthing the continent’s first Tech Experience Centre.
The commendations come ahead of the October 1st launch of the centre located in the high-rise Yudala Heights on 13 Idowu Martins, Victoria Island, Lagos.
Equally important, the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Ali Pantami is expected in Lagos to commission the Centre, with the Lagos State Governor, BabajideSanwo-Olu, alongside a number of other high profile dignitaries, expected in attendance. The event will be streamed live to millions across the world from 5pm.
In a chat with newsmen, Chidalu Ekeh, head of the Tech Experience Centre, stated that aside reducing the decision making cycle for Chief Executive Officers (CEOs), Chief Information Officers (CIOs), Chief Technology Officers (CTOs), as well as other technology consumers, the Centre will also serve as a training centre for young Nigerians on latest technology.
“We are creating a path in this country where state-of-the-art technology will be accessible to CEOs, CIOs, CTOs and others technology consumers, so that they can make prompt decisions without leaving the country,” Chidalu said.
“What we have on board is a tech genius area where our customers will be able to take advantage of the partnerships that we have with the various OEMs on board.
“The Centre will afford young Nigerians the opportunity to receive world-class training on the latest technology.”
Also speaking on the reason for mobilising other tech giants to bring the massive project to life, Mrs. Gozy Ijogun, managing director (Sales) TD Africa, explained that the centre is aimed at adding value to the technology space in Nigeria in particular and Africa in general.
Ijogun said: “I am sure everyone is wondering what TD Africa is doing with the Tech Experience Centre. At TD Africa, we consider ourselves value added distributors.
“We are not just here to buy and sell. We add value to the economy. For that reason, we came up with the Tech Experience Centre so that Africans can experience technology the way it should be in this part of the world.
“No other distributor can do this. TD Africa is here to add value to the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) ecosystem.”
The Centre, housed within an impressive eight-floor edifice, will play host to tech giants, such as Cisco, Microsoft, Dell Technologies, HP, Schneider Electric, Zinox, Philips, Samsung, Apple and Bosch, among others.
“The structure also houses a cutting-edge gaming arena, lifestyle and smart home area, café, training centre, conference rooms and expansive office spaces, among others.
Olakunle Oloruntimehin, general manager, Cisco, West Africa, expressed delight with the concept behind the Tech Experience Centre, adding that it would be a great opportunity to offer latest technologies to consumers under the same roof with other tech giants.
“It is a good opportunity to collaborate with TD Africa and other OEMs under one roof. Technology is being democratised and it is important that people come together to take this outcome forward.
“Cisco is excited not only to partner with TD Africa but also to work with other OEMs under one space to make this work,” Oloruntimehin said.
Chioma Iwuchukwu-Nweke, country manager (Nigeria), Philips, also expressed excitement with the expected launch of the project. She revealed that Philips would delight tech customers at the Centre with latest health-driven home appliances.
Nweke said: “This is a dramatisation of the phrase ‘think global, act local.’ This is what TD Africa is doing with the Tech Experience Centre, by bringing lots of multinationals in the technology space in one place so that customers will experience latest technology.
“Before now, people always take technology to be something they have to travel outside the country to experience.
“We are sure that the Centre is going to change this narrative, especially at this time when the thought of travelling is a little bit scary for a lot of people. For us at Philips, customers should expect total innovative home appliances.”
On her part, Vivian Mike-Eze, marketing communication manager, Schneider Electric, commended the vision behind the initiative.
She urged tech consumers to be ready for an immersive experience with smart home concepts at the Tech Experience Centre.
“There has not been such a centre that gathers all the tech giants together in one place here in Nigeria. So, TD Africa has really set a precedent.
“I believe that people visiting the Tech Experience Centre expect to experience technology. In Nigeria, there is really a market for advanced technology that has been ignored for too long.
“This vision by TD Africa to bring the latest technology and get customers to experience it live is a fantastic opportunity to tap into. Because of the Centre, customers do not need to travel to the US or UK to actually see latest technology.
“Schneider Electric promises customers home automation, using the smart phone concept, when they walk into the Tech Experience Centre.
“This involves having the ability to control the temperature and ambience in their homes, with just a voice command. It is easy to talk about it, but there is no better idea than experiencing it by testing the controls and seeing it live.”
In addition, Microsoft Senior Partner, Specialist-Modern Work, Josh Adekeye, appreciated TD Africa, noting that the Centre will promote customer immersive experience. He promised that Microsoft would always support the Centre, which will reduce the burden for Microsoft to fly its customers to other countries to see its latest technological rollouts.
Adekeye said: “For us at Microsoft, when we heard about the Tech Experience Centre, we knew that it was something we needed to participate in. Before now, we usually fly our customers to Microsoft Technology Centre either in Dubai or in the US.
“However, when this opportunity came, we indicated interest and supported TD Africa to achieve it. We will always support the Centre. The beauty of technology is in seeing it.
“What Microsoft brings to the table is customer immersive experience. It means the customer will see the technology, feel the impact and make their decision easily and quickly.”
Lending his voice, Managing Director, Samsung (Nigeria), CadenChiyeon Yu hailed TD Africa for galvanising other tech giants to bring the Tech Experience Centre to life, adding that the Centre will afford Samsung a great opportunity to expose customers to its latest offerings in Internet of Things (IOT), Artificial Intelligence (AI) and other innovations shaping the global tech ecosystem.
Meanwhile, Ayokunmi Solesi, Country Manager (Nigeria), Bosch, described the Centre as a huge landmark on the African continent, adding that Bosch was ready to bring modern kitchen appliances to the delight of customers at the Centre.
Solesi said: “This is live experience. When you see big OEMs like Bosch, Schneider Electric, Samsung, Cisco, Microsoft, among others coming under a platform, you will realise that something great is about to be born.
“This is a huge landmark, not just in Nigeria, but also in Africa. For us at Bosch, this is a very commendable initiative,” Solesi said.
The Tech Experience Centre is an ambitious project, the first of its kind in Africa, to house global technology giants under one roof, with the aim of making latest and cutting-edge technology easily accessible to Nigerians and other nationals.
Experts and economic watchers have hailed the expected launch of the centre as a major development that will shore up Nigeria’s relevance in the global technology space, while also boosting the nation’s economy.
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