Wilcocks warns of SA entitlement - TechCentral

Wilcocks warns of SA entitlement

Derek Wilcocks

South Africans tend to view the rest of Africa in a “very arrogant way”, taking for granted the oft-repeated statement that it is the leading economy and is therefore entitled to be the gateway for business to the continent.

This is the view of Dimension Data Middle East and Africa CEO Derek Wilcocks, who was speaking at Telkom’s annual Satnac conference in George in the Western Cape on Monday.

“A particular worry for us South Africans is we are starting to see the first few global companies relocate their head offices for Africa from SA to Kenya,” Wilcocks, who was speaking in a panel discussion, told Satnac delegates.

“One key reason for this is they feel they have better connectivity to the rest of Africa from Kenya than they do from SA.”

Wilcocks said South Africans must “consider very carefully” the implications of presuming that the country is entitled to being the business gateway to the rest of the continent.

“If you look today at East Africa, you arguably have a better telecommunications infrastructure there than in SA.”

However, he said that in most of Africa domestic markets are still small, making it “very difficult to build profitable business models in those markets”. — (c) 2012 NewsCentral Media

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