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The Networked Economy is Becoming the New Normal – Edet

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Richard Edet, Cisco’s general manager for Nigeria as described network as crucial to driving growth, innovation, efficiency and productivity for the nation and its people.
This, he said is a platform for creating intelligent, sustainable solutions for public safety and security, transportation, buildings, utilities, healthcare and education.
Edet, in an article discussed the lessons learned from the recent economic downturn and how working closer with African governments, placing technology at the core of economic growth, and environmental and social sustainability are high on the agenda.
“New business models that came to life during the downturn will, most likely, be here to stay. Even from a go-to-market perspective, many businesses were prompted to explore new revenue channels and services,” he said.
Edet added that sustainable competitive advantages will be realized by organizations that move quickly to embrace collaborative processes and the tools that allow their employees, customers and partners to intelligently connect and interact anytime, anywhere, via any device – along with services that can save time, money and deliver better results in today’s global environment.
In moving toward a global economy, he explained that the power of Web 2.0 and social media is giving end-users the capability to share their own personal experience of the goods and services they invest in, and in many cases this offers a real time return on those investments.
“This interconnected environment of sharing knowledge and ideas helps many businesses around the world – those that are listening and engaging with their customers in one hand, and to continue developing innovating, and offering better products and more valuable services that can meet these demands, on the other.”
He opined that an economy built on intelligent technology architecture has the potential to help organizations and individuals to be productive and drive innovative collaboration irrespective of where they or their teams happen to be located.
The Cisco general manager said there is also a growing recognition in the Nigerian business community around the importance of public-private partnerships for driving economic growth and prosperity. While the private sector will play a significant role in catapulting the upturn, government and the private sector also need to work collaboratively, now more than ever.
“Technology is primed to take a leadership role as the economic catalyst. Health systems globally are challenged to meet increasing demand for quality services. In Nigeria for example, patients in both urban and rural settings, often have limited access to health care, particularly when they require specialty services or need care for chronic illness, healthcare workers are under similar pressures were more is needed from them in terms of information availability, reliable access and inter-collaboration capabilities within the healthcare facility environment.”
Edet however explained that: “In the very near future, with solutions like Cisco TelePresence technology healthcare professionals will be able to collaborate more easily, regardless of location, thereby improving both the timeliness and the quality of care delivered. Patients will have access to physicians and specialists from remote locations. The infrastructure is also ideal for applications of telemedicine such as specialist or radiologist consultations”.
He said holistic transformation can also be applied to the educational system. “Enabled by collaborative technologies that allow individuals to create, adapt and share content and best practices; by providing access to high-quality educational opportunities through public and private partnerships with educational leaders, can help create a knowledge economy by imparting vocational training to rural youth and preparing students to become members of the global 21st century workforce. In the future, technology solutions like the Cisco TelePresence Classroom will help transform the learning environment in Nigeria by providing a means to bring education to remote locations and also connect with colleges, institutions and tutors from around the world”.
Edet affirmed that intelligent and innovative use of this technology can increase productivity, reduce overall costs and ultimately help transform companies, cities, countries and subsequently, individual lives. Countries that prioritize national networking readiness can enjoy a higher competitive advantage and help capture a bigger share of foreign direct investments.


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Nigeria CommunicationsWeek believes that technology makes life more exciting and helps improve the lives of people around Nigeria and indeed the world. So since 2007, we have devoted our energy to independent reportage of technology and how they affect lives.

E-Business

Davido Launches Chatter, Own Social Media App

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David Adeleke, Nigerian musician well known as Davido, has launched Chatter, a new social media application.

Davido Launches Chatter, Own Social Media App

Chatter is a social audiovisual utility platform designed to help amplify the voice of content creators and connect them with a vibrant community.

However, the app’s usage goes beyond content creators; business-minded individuals, as well as people looking to connect, have a place on it.

The musician used his social media accounts to announce the app’s release.

He gave a brief history of the development of the software and its features with his friend.

The well-known musician from Nigeria stated that he and Sir Banko, his close friend  are the owners of the app.

The music icon posted information about Chatter, a social audiovisual utility platform that connects content creators to a lively community and helps them magnify their voices.

In the past eight months, Davido has undertaken three internet projects.

Recall that the musician introduced his cryptocurrency.

However, the $DAVIDO coin fell a few days after it launched, prompting some cryptocurrency fans to call it a scam and a rug-pull.

 

 


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E-Business

Holiday Shopping Season to Look Different for Retailers this Year as Shoppers Take on more Debt

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By Zuko Mdwaba, Salesforce Area Vice President & Africa Leader

New Salesforce research shows that 37% of indebted consumers are using their credit cards more today than they were a year ago, while 32% report using alternative credit services like “buy now, pay later” more frequently. What’s more, 43% of consumers are carrying more debt compared to 2023. And this isn’t unique to one income bracket — consumers across all levels are tapping into their credit lines more today than they were last year.

Zuko Mdwaba

Zuko Mdwaba

But this increased reliance on credit isn’t due to consumers buying more. According to the Salesforce Shopping Index, online order volumes have been falling since 2022 and decreased by 2% year over year in the first quarter of this year. When they do buy, they’re trading down, buying discounted merchandise, and seeking private labels.

Holiday shopping prediction #1: Chinese shopping apps will take market share

As consumers face uncertainty around rising prices, they’re changing shopping habits. Long gone are the pandemic times when the fastest shipping time could win over new business. Now it comes down to price.

Shoppers are looking for the best deal. Two-thirds of global shoppers report that prices dictate where they chose to shop, with less than one-third prioritising quality of the goods. Temu is the clear winner, with 43% of Western shoppers purchasing on this platform within the last six months. But for Gen Zers, Shein is the top destination, with half of this group placing an order recently.

This holiday season, we predict that Chinese shopping applications will capture $160 billion in global ecommerce market share outside of China.

Holiday shopping prediction #2: Middle-mile shipping puts strain on margins

The Houthi attacks in the Red Sea and rising crude oil prices are driving up container costs worldwide, putting strain on the middle-mile infrastructure for the first half of the year. Additionally, last-mile challenges are also stacking up thanks to events like the collapse of the Francis Scott Key Bridge and rising delivery costs – stalling delivery times and adding expenses for retailers.

But retailers shouldn’t push the shipping expenses back on shoppers. Free shipping offers are a top-three reason why consumers choose to make a purchase from a particular brand or retailer. Over half of shoppers say they are more likely to purchase online than in store if delivery is free.

This holiday season we predict brands and retailers will spend an extra $197B in middle-mile expenses, increasing 97% over last year.

Holiday shopping prediction #3: Shoppers embrace AI to search for the perfect gift

Last holiday season, 17% of online purchases were influenced by AI – both predictive and generative. That totalled a whopping $199M of onlines sales worldwide in November and December. This year, consumers will increasingly leverage AI – knowingly or not – to search for the right gift at the right price. In fact, 53% of shoppers surveyed said they are interested in using generative AI for inspiring the perfect present. As retailers increasingly embed AI into search experiences, we predict search will drive a nearly 3x better conversion rate compared to traffic not engaging with site search.

Holiday shopping prediction #4: Black Friday becomes Cyber Friday

Over the years, as online shopping grew in popularity and consumers could shop from anywhere, holiday shopping started earlier and earlier in the month of November. Last year, Black Friday gained back 4% of online holiday sales, establishing itself as the biggest online shopping day of the year.

We’re expecting the same of the upcoming holiday shopping season. Two-thirds of shoppers say they’re holding out on making big purchases until Cyber Week, anticipating better deals. The big news is that Black Friday is going to be the biggest day for digital. Salesforce research predicts online sales will take 7% of in store sales on Black Friday.

Holiday shopping prediction #5: Retailers tap loyal shoppers to avoid skyrocketing digital marketing costs

Customer acquisition continues to be costly for retailers. In the face of a busy election cycles, and as Chinese companies buy up advertising inventory, digital marketing costs continue to get more expensive, and opportunities to get in front of the right audience grow scarce. This means that brands and retailers have to better engage their existing customer base amid this tug of war over digital advertising space.

But there are other opportunities. Shoppers are doubling down on loyalty. According to our Salesforce Shopping Index, the rate of repeat buyers in the first quarter increased by 8% over the last two years. And shoppers are prioritising brands and retailers that offer loyalty programmes. Our research shows 63% of shoppers are making more purchases from stores where they can earn and redeem loyalty points. This holiday season, we predict that 2 out of 5 holiday purchases will be made by a loyal repeat buyer.


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APTS Cyber-Attacks Target African Governments, Others

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Kaspersky, a global cybersecurity firm, has said that it is keeping a close eye on advanced persistent threats (APTs) and nine active threat actors targeting African organisations.

APTS Cyber-Attacks Target African Governments, Others

Kaspersky researchers’ intelligence has identified government, energy, and telecommunications as the primary targets in African countries.

APT groups are long-term, targeted cyber-attacks in which intruders obtain network access and go undiscovered for a lengthy period of time. APT attacks are typically initiated to steal extremely sensitive data.

These APT organisations are frequently driven by espionage, financial gain, or, in some cases, hacktivism.

According to Kaspersky intelligence, MuddyWater, FruityArmor, and Sidewinder are among the region’s most prominent groups.

Kaspersky, which says it protects over a billion devices worldwide from cyberattacks, collaborates with law enforcement and offers intelligence to help them track down these sophisticated hackers.

These threat actors, according to the company, use a variety of methods to infiltrate their targets in the region.

Social engineering is a typical method employed on social media or via email, such as placing a bogus job advertisement for software developers.

According to Amin Hasbini, head of Kaspersky’s global research and analysis team for the Middle East, Turkey, and Africa, said it is critical to keep up with these sophisticated syndicates and stop corporate espionage.

“The current geopolitical climate is a hotbed for APT activity, therefore, investigating these attacks and gaining intelligence on their movement is vital for security teams and corporations in Africa. Our research allows businesses and government entities to determine the significance of the threat posed, understand the attackers’ next move and accordingly be able to take the appropriate security steps to protect themselves,” he said.

 

 

 


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