Telkom Kenya looks to the Cloud for growth and diversification

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Mr. Geoffrey Shimanyula, Director of Sales – Enterprise, Telkom Kenya. Photo by Arthur Kuwashima.

When we think of Telkom Kenya most of our minds instantly enter the realm of communications, and rightly so, as the company which has evolved from KPTC, was at one-point Kenya’s sole provider of both Postal and Telecommunication services. Over the years however, the company has evolved, in turn forming an Enterprise Division; which has enabled it to create other revenue streams by providing new services; in this regard the company is looking at offering cloud services as well as colocation data center services to its customers all in a bid to widen and deepen its Product Portfolio.

This was shared by Mr. Geoffrey Shimanyula, Director of Sales – Enterprise, Telkom Kenya, during an interview with CIO East Africa, where he pointed out that, even though, for the longest period, Telkom Kenya, has had the longest reach in terms of connectivity, whether its via Fiber, Copper, carrier class microwave or V-Sat, the business has not fully exploited these assets.

“The reason for this is because we are aware that connectivity has been commoditised, and if we intend to grow it cannot be done by selling pipes or internet. As it is, internet is the only thing the world over customers expect to buy more for less; that being the constant we are perpetually looking for other revenue streams, and we see cloud as the revenue stream that will deliver for us,” Mr. Geoffrey Shimanyula said.

Telkom establishes Enterprise function

“When the Enterprise Division was put together, the number one thing that was looked at was enhancing its connectivity product offering. Because of our expansive reach in terms of fiber, we went out to connect businesses on virtual private network platform. The bulk of our business comes from connectivity,” Mr. Shimanyula said.

Telkom, even from the old days, has been the provider of Internet Services to Government, large accounts, small and medium enterprises as well as other Service Providers.

Telkom Enterprise also offers a wide range of fixed voice solutions, with Mr. Shimanyula informing that the company is the only provider with a PSTN infrastructure in Kenya, which they are migrating to better technologies either via ISDN or SIP.  Apart from the fixed voice services, Telkom Enterprise also offers mobile postpaid voice services.

A look into the future of Telkom enterprise

Speaking on the direction that Telkom Kenya’s Enterprise arm is headed, Mr. Shimanyula explains that, “we offer colocation services, we have a data center in Nairobi and plans are underway to deploy two other data centers in the country, one of which will be in Mombasa,”

Telkom Enterprise, according to Mr. Shimanyula is looking at regional data centers so as to better serve all its collocation clients no matter which part of the country they are located.

“As we get into the cloud space, we are currently offering Infrastructure as a Service cloud solutions as well as back up services for clients who want a cloud solution. We are not very big in cloud, but I can ensure you that there is a team that is deliberately focused that we grow our cloud space in this market,” noted Mr. Shimanyula.

“The reason for this is because we are aware that connectivity has been commoditised, and if we intend to grow it cannot be done by selling pipes or internet. As it is, internet is the only thing the world over customers expect to buy more for less; that being the constant we are perpetually looking for other revenue streams, and we see cloud as the revenue stream that will deliver for us.” He concluded.

For more on Telkom Kenya grab our upcoming May edition of the CIO East Africa Magazine as Mr. Geoffrey Shimanyula touches on the Telkom and Airtel merger, how the business is aligning to the governments big 4 agenda, launch of new solutions and so much more.

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