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Vodafone Zambia implores SMEs to embrace the connected future

Vodafone Zambia CEO, Lars Stork (Second from right) as a panelist on ICTs in SME development during the Ease of Doing Business Conference in Livingstone.

Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) must adopt and deploy technology-related business solutions if they are to remain competitive and relevant in Zambia’s growing digital and connected economy.

The remarks came from Vodafone Zambia Enterprise Director, Songezo Masiso, during a business forum hosted by First National Bank (FNB), where he spoke about the interrelatedness of SME growth and ICT usage in a presentation on “The connected future for SMEs.”

“Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) are the lifeblood of the Zambian economy. They account for most of all businesses and employ more than two-thirds of all workers. Thus, it is integral to ensure they are ably equipped with the tools to excel and thrive in the digital economy,” said Mr Masiso.

He added that connectivity can help SMEs ride out difficult market conditions, enabling them to increase their exposure to new markets, bring them closer to existing and new customers, cut costs and lower the barriers to entry.

“Technology is fast-tracking small businesses into the digital age by reducing the capital investment required to operate and allowing SMEs to compete with larger, more established, companies. At Vodafone, we understand this and are working closely with a number of SMEs to bridge the technology and connectivity gap.”

A global study carried out by Vodafone UK notes that the use of technology translated into better business results further suggesting a strong correlation between greater technology use and both business performance and confidence.

The inaugural one-day FNB Business Summit leads discussions to challenge Zambian SME executives to dream big and grow their businesses into global giants. It also looks at the constraints to SMEs and businesses in general and makes recommendations on how to improve the ease of doing business.