Faced with aging infrastructure, limited storage and unreliable power supply, Reliance Infosystems showed Botswana Meat Commisson the pathway to digital success via Microsoft Cloud. We are also helping Wild African Group migrate more than 600 employees and 8 data centers to Microsoft Cloud. Reliance Infosystems is gaining unprecedented tractions with building Microsoft Cloud mindshare across Botswana.
Propelled by recent global health and economic crises, pressure is mounting for organizations to digitally transform by harnessing new technologies to improve business outcomes. Cloud technology has helped business in sub-Saharan Africa manage the disruptions caused by the coronavirus pandemic. This is one of the key findings of the third edition of the Cloud in Africa 2020 report. 38% of decision-makers in sub-Saharan Africa increased their cloud services spend in the last year and cited business efficiency, agility and operational flexibility, and improved customer experienced as top cloud tech benefits.
Business Problems and Opportunities
Botswana Meat Commission (BMC)
Established in 1965, Botswana Meat Commission (BMC) is a Parastatal which promotes the development of Botswana’s livestock industry as well as beef and related products globally. Headquartered in Lobatse, its premises are an integrated complex housing an abattoir, cannery, and byproducts plant as well as a tannery. Besides owning three abattoirs in Botswana, BMC has cold storage facilities in South Africa with marketing subsidiaries in the United Kingdom, Germany, Holland, and South Africa and employs over 1,300 personnel.
Faced with aging infrastructure, limited storage and unreliable power supply, BMC was one of the hardest hit organizations by Covid-19 pandemic. Highly dependent on supply of livestock from local farmers for slaughter, the pandemic disrupted business and the financial implications on both BMC and their customers were calamitous with the government having to intervene with a $10 million emergency fund to sustain operations.
Between November and December 2020, Reliance Infosystems, in partnership with Microsoft, ran a series of Azure-in-a-Day workshops focusing on Infrastructure Migration, Windows Virtual Desktop and Azure Sentinel with BMC and 15 other customers. Through this engagement, BMC was able to understand how Azure can accelerate their business growth and support business transformation even in a pandemic. We further engaged with BMC on Secure Remote Work, Advanced Networking, and Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery sessions in December 2020. In January 2021, we formulated a migration strategy and ran an assessment on BMC’s environment to measure the readiness and estimate the effect of migrating their workloads to Azure. As of April 2021, Reliance Infosystems will be partnering with Microsoft to help migrate BMC infrastructure to Microsoft Cloud.
Wild African Group
Wild African Group is a holding company, which engages in business activities across multiple industries. The company has focus on long term investments in companies ranging from real estate, property financing, hospitality, building and construction, agriculture, health and wellness and law. Currently, the company employs over 600 staff and operates in Botswana, South Africa and Angola.
Currently, the company has intensive manual processing due to physical handling of paperwork. This highly manual scenario leads to ‘bottlenecks’ in-service delivery and promotes the risk of poor organizational response to business and lost time that should be spent carrying out core business.
Through a series of envisioning workshops, we have kickstarted WAG’s digital transformation journey by strategically mapping out the business model and processes to be digitized for each of the 17 companies in the group. The technology intervention model will offer WAG simplicity, centralized visibility, and easy administration.
Our solution offerings to WAG are aligned with the core business operations, marketing sales and cross-service business intelligence, back-office productivity and security platforms, and general business administration. The solutions are a fusion on custom apps built on the Power Platform (Sajenwa, Assentory, FinanceIT) and a suite of Microsoft solutions from Modern Workplace (Microsoft 365), Azure and Business Applications (Dynamics 365). The digital transformation strategy will enable the functional businesses to streamline their operations by providing real time data that can be used for decision making.
Dimensioning Business Impact
The ongoing pandemic became a positive inflection point for Botswana Meat Commission, Wild African Group and 15 other customers across Botswana. The business outcomes validate the efficacy of Microsoft Cloud to remotely connecting and empowering all employees across all functions to perform their different roles across BMC processing and supply chain, WAG inventory and financing activities and many other customers leveraging both out-of-box and custom tools sitting on Azure, Microsoft 365 and Power Platform. Reliance Infosystems’ engagement with customers has translated into significant mindshare and commitment to modernize and migrate to Microsoft Cloud at scale. We have transited many customers far down the purchase funnel across awareness, interest, considerations, evaluation, and decision.