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M2M, Big Data to Overcome Challenges in the Retail Sector

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High competition within the retail sector compels market participants to seek ways to sustain a well-organised, well-connected supply chain and develop production plans in tune with the customer’s desires.

Implementation of machine-to-machine (M2M) technologies and data analytics would be a solution to overcome these challenges.

M2M can facilitate communication between supply chain actors and promote easier management of inventory. This technology can also provide a complete shopping experience for the customer and develop innovative methods of communicating with clients.

According to Frost & Sullivan’s ICT research, the retail sector spent EUR59.0 billion on ICT products and services across Europe in 2012. By 2017, ICT spend is forecast to increase to EUR75.0 billion at a compound average growth rate (CAGR) of 5.0 percent (2012-2017). At this CAGR, the retail sector is expected to enjoy the second highest growth rate of all vertical markets in Europe, just behind the wholesale and distribution sector.

“Technological advancement in any industry helps to streamline operations. Implementation of M2M technologies, on wireless or wired networks, specifically, promotes remote management of workloads thereby reducing time spent on regular operational work,” said Frost & Sullivan Research Analyst, ICT, Shuba Ramkumar.

“Furthermore, M2M connectivity allows data collection on various parameters which can be analysed to provide better insight into the market, and in particular customer behaviour.”

In the retail sector there is a constant need to ensure operational efficiency that can help retailers to stay ahead of the competition.

Moreover, this sector is heavily dependent on a well-managed and coordinated production and distribution channels.

Being a customer facing industry, it is also important to build and maintain customer interest. All these challenges can be addressed by M2M technologies.

“One of the biggest areas for growth in M2M for retail is the associated use of data analytics to understand shopping habits of customers,” added Shuba Ramkumar. “Consumer data analytics may be done using data sets from different sources, to help retailers either increase sales or optimise operating expenses.”

Retailers stand to benefit from collaboration with service providers such as Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) who possess raw data about subscribers using their network services. Although very useful, the use of big data always raises a number of questions about privacy and security. However, the biggest obstacle, preventing the integration of data sets is the lack of common standards in data formats.

MNOs have several features that make them relevant service providers in the retail space. Their technical strength in providing connectivity, ownership of vast reservoirs of customer data via communications networks, experience with personalised marketing and advertising make them strong contenders to be IT vendors for smart shops in the future.

“The retail industry currently uses M2M connectivity in several vital areas to overcome operational challenges such as inventory management, in-store management and remote monitoring of mobile stores. With advancements in technology, development of common standards and cost reductions, retail shops will grow from using M2M connectivity for basic requirements to deriving value-added benefits from its use (for example, data analytics, personalised marketing and in-shop services facilitating customer shopping experience). Shops will therefore become smarter, reflecting the objectives of a smart community,” summarised  Shuba  Ramkumar.


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FG to Boost Artificial Intelligence

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Federal government on Tuesday announced that it has developed initiatives for the adoption of Artificial Intelligence technology in Nigeria.

FG to Boost Artificial Intelligence

 

The establishment of a Centre for Artificial Intelligence and Robotics in Nigeria (CFAIR) is also expected soon.

The National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) said that AI applications enable innovative solutions, improve risk assessment, better planning, and faster knowledge-sharing.

Abdullahi Usman Gambo, director of IT Infrastructure Solution, NITDA, spoke at a workshop in commemoration of International Day for Universal Access to Information (IDUAI) organised by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO).

He noted that AI would open up opportunities for access to information and also help to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set by the United Nations (UN) in the 2030 Agenda.

Gambo said: “Artificial Intelligence is poised to revolutionize the way we go about our daily lives – from governance to business, legislation to medicine to defence, etc. We can all agree that AI is humanity’s new frontier.

“We have developed initiatives for adoption of emerging technologies such as AI, strengthen cybersecurity, digital skills for digitally excluded citizens while enhancing the regulatory and market environment to increase access to ICTs, and promote seamless access to information.

“We believe AI and associated emerging technologies will completely enhance the speed, efficiency and effectiveness of information gathering during the exchange of data or the ways of communication,” he said.

Delivering his paper, Yushau Shuaib, publisher of PRNigeria, described access to information as the right of the citizens to accurate, transparent, and timely facts and figures.

The former National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) spokesman stated that governments at all levels have obligations to communicate with people, while the public has the right to know and criticize authorities through constructive engagement.

The media executive, however, appealed to Nigerians not to use social media platforms for fake news dissemination.

“The merits of new media on affordability, accessibility and instant delivery are occasionally marred by the fact that social media is sometimes used to spread fake news”, he said.

Shuaib called for collaboration of stakeholders in ensuring appropriate legislation through public awareness campaigns in order to improve access to universal information.


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Samsung Unveils Technologically Advanced 2020 Consumer Products

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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.

 


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CWG Plc Empowers Small Businesses in Nigeria with SME Solution

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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.


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