Intelligent Tech Channels Issue 47 - Page 54

EXPERT SPEAK

DIFFERENTIATING FROM HYPER-SCALERS IS KEY TO MSP SUCCESS IN THE AFRICAN MARKET

As access to technology is critical for all countries within the African market , the value for managed service providers ( MSPs ) lies in their ability to on-sell additional services . Gerhard Fourie , Channel Lead , Commvault Africa , tells Intelligent Tech Channels why MSPs need to differentiate themselves from the hyper-scalers who offer cloud services , which means adopting a flexible approach that is based on delivering solutions for customers , rather than specific technology offerings .

Customers across Africa face the challenge of accessing the technology , skills and services they need to drive their business forward . Managed service providers ( MSPs ) are in an excellent position not only to provide access to hardware such as data storage capacity , but to upsell and cross-sell additional value-adds . However , the key to success is to differentiate from hyper-scalers , who are also making moves into the continent . Strong partnerships between distributors , vendors and local partners is key , but a flexible approach is also vital , to prevent vendor lock-in and deliver the solutions customers need to create competitive advantage .

A unique continent
Africa is by no means a homogenous market , but certain challenges are common across the region . Access to vendors , distributors and technology can be difficult , because not all large global players will have a local presence in all markets . This may be for several reasons but understanding local languages and culture can prove to be a significant barrier . While this is a challenge , it is also an opportunity for MSPs to become a trusted
Gerhard Fourie , Channel Lead , Commvault Africa local partner for vendors and distributors , growing revenue streams , helping vendors to gain a presence in the market , and bringing technology access into Africa . Local partners with knowledge of local languages and culture , as well as existing relationships with potential customers , are an essential part of the channel on the continent .
Underpinning the architecture
In order for MSPs to deliver to their customers , it is essential to have the right underlying architecture underpinning all solutions . Service providers need storage that facilitates a scale-out approach to increasing capacity , rather than requiring scale-up or forklift style upgrades . This will not only allow for greater economies of scale , but it is also more cost effective ,
Africa is by no means a homogenous market , but certain challenges are common across the region . Access to vendors , distributors and technology can be difficult , because not all large global players will have a local presence in all markets .
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