Login 2014

Tuesday, 7 October 2014

by Silumesii Maboshe

From the 1st to the 3rd of October this year, NetOne held Login 2014, Zambia’s first-ever Zambian enterprise technology summit. Conceived by Bejoy Nettikadan and held at the Zambezi Sun in Livingstone, the aim of the summit was:

… bringing together global technology vendors [and] … IT decision makers from Zambia’s largest corporates, quasi-governmental, and governmental institutions.

The event also featured the Login Zambia Technology Awards which were:

… established in order to recognise outstanding technology adoption and innovation among Zambian businesses.

While I did not know what to expect, the summit delivered everything I imagine an enterprise technology should have … and then some. Keynote addresses, breakout sessions, product demos, vendor exhibitions and to top it off, a Hawaiian night and a black-tie awards night.

I got to experience the summit as an event photographer so my perspective was unique. The picturesque location was deliberately chosen to be as far away from “the office” as possible. In conversations with the delegates, vendors and the organising team, advertising the event was a challenge. Most of the difficulty being, “How do you target professionals working in IT en masse?”. ICT in Zambia has no organisational body or event to gather around so spreading the word was literally a door-to-door affair. NetOne’s hard work of talking to people individually paid off and over 100 delegates successfully made it to Livingstone. It is conceivable that the Login Summit could be come one way to get Zambians in enterprise tech to come together every year.

The vendors and sponsors of the summit included:

  1. Check Point–a worldwide leader in providing security solutions
  2. Cisco–who essentially run the Internet with networking hardware, software and more recently, servers
  3. HP–providers of converged infrastructure
  4. IBM–technology solution providers
  5. Lenovo–makers of personal computers, table computers, smart phones, workstations, servers and more
  6. N Data–a subsidiary of NetOne which built and operate Zambia’s first multi-tenant tier-3 data centre
  7. NetApp–storage solution providers
  8. Printech–a local printing company that has diversified to an authorised dealer for Apple products in Zambia
  9. Qlik–a leader in business intelligence software solutions
  10. Sage–a renowned developer, implementer and supporter of HR and payroll software and services
  11. Symantec–a global leader in security, storage and systems management solutions
  12. VMWare–an industry-leader in virtualisation software

Lenovo deserves an honourable mention being the earliest and most passionate vendor and sponsor on board. I was very pleased and almost overtaken by their mantra “Lenovo. For those that do.”.

A total of five Login Zambia Technology Awards were presented:

  1. Best Technology Adoption Rate: Zambia Daily Mail
  2. Most Innovative Use of Technology: Cargill
  3. Best Adoption of Business Continuity Plan and Disaster Recovery Process: Hollard Insurance
  4. Best Adoption of Technology to Enhance Customer Experience and Service: Lafarge
  5. Best Adoption of Technology to Enhance Efficiency and Reduce Costs: World Wildlife Fund

Additionally, delegates were able to vote on and award the best vendor break-out session presentation and the best vendor exhibition.

  1. Best Presenter: Sage HR Africa
  2. Best Exhibitor: Lenovo

Finally, there was the prestigious Judges Choice award:

I can’t imagine the time, money and effort it took to pull off Login 2014. The bar has been set very high. As the Summit drew to a close, the consensus was that Zambia’s enterprise technology space needs this to be an annual event. NetOne agrees so be sure to set aside time in September for Login 2015!