IBM continues with its push to expand into Africa with the expansion of its branch office in Port Louis on the island of Mauritius in the Indian Ocean off the Southeast coast of Africa.
IBM officials said the increased presence will strengthen its ability to provide solutions and services to a rapidly expanding base of customers and partners in the region. Mauritius has a successful and competitive economy with some of the highest growth rates in Africa and an active international export market spanning a diverse range of sectors, IBM said.
"As Mauritius strives to strengthen its international competitiveness, IBM is experiencing strong demand from the textile, banking, tourism, telecommunications and IT services sectors, which are turning to technology to increase productivity and differentiate offerings," Takreem El Tohamy, IBMs general manager for the Middle East and Africa, said in a statement.
IBM's Mauritius office is part of a broad program of investment that the company is making across Africa through the creation of new facilities, offices, training, staffing and recruitment, sales and marketing, and corporate citizenship. The announcement follows the recent news of the opening of IBM's office in Luanda, Angola, and gives the company a direct presence in more than 20 African countries, including South Africa, Senegal, Ghana, Nigeria, Kenya, Tanzania, Morocco, Egypt, Tunisia and Algeria.
"IBM has been present in Africa for over 60 years, but we are now taking our business to the next level in recognition of the huge potential of the African market and the role of smarter systems in transforming business, government and society across the continent," added Takreem El Tohamy.
One of IBM's clients on the island is global textile industry leader Compagnie Mauricienne de Textile Ltee (CMT), which has more than 12,000 employees and runs a 24-hour automated factory supplying the fashion markets across the United States and Europe. CMT needed a solution to increase efficiencies and ensure timely delivery of its clothing products, which are often manufactured to meet fast-turnaround orders. IBM provided CMT with a new data storage system, which has led to a 20 percent increase in the performance of its operations, IBM said.
"The new system from IBM has enabled us to better manage our supply chain and reduce downtime in order for us to remain a reliable international supplier of a vast array of clothing styles," Doreen Wong, CIO of CMT, said in a statement.
International Card Processing Services (ICPS) of Mauritius also is using IBM solutions to support the modernization of the country's financial services sector. ICPS provides IT platforms for key banks in Mauritius, including the Mauritius Commercial Bank. In line with its business expansion plans to provide similar services across Africa, ICPS selected IBM's Power Systems. "With our new solution from IBM, we have improved the energy efficiency of our IT systems, decreased transaction processing time and reduced operating costs," Roshan Kulpoo, general manager of ICPS, said in a statement.
IBM's increased presence in Mauritius and investment in skills is set to have a positive impact on the local IT market, especially the IT services sector, the company said.
"The Mauritian Government recognizes the central role ICT plays in enhancing the country's development, and we are working to establish Mauritius as a key exporter of ICT services. We want to position the country as a safe and reliable ICT destination, capitalizing on our bilingual workforce and modern ICT infrastructure, and believe that IBM will strongly support this goal," the Honorable Tassarajen Pillay Chedumbrum, minister of information and communication technology for Mauritius, said in a statement.
IBM has been present in Mauritius for more than 10 years through its sales team and an established business partner network. Today, IBM's clients on the island also include Air Mauritius, Bramer Bank, Rogers Group and Mauritius Union Assurance, among others, IBM said.
Elsewhere in the region, IBM also has locations in the Seychelles and Madagascar through its pan-African partnership with the telecommunications operator Bharti Airtel.