Microsoft to Distribute Directly in East Africa

Computing

Microsoft, the world's largest software company, has signed an agreement with Comtel Integrators Africa that allows the latter to vend its products exclusively in the East and Southern African region.

The partnership will enable Comtel to use Microsoft's advanced infrastructure to develop and market a range of IT solutions for the small and medium enterprises that dominate sub-Saharan African economies.

Most importantly, the development will now make it possible for local companies, NGOs and other entities to buy and use Microsoft's software products legally, according to Wayne Robinson, Comtel's director of Business Development.

"Today in East and Central Africa we believe we have a calling to impact the population through the way we know best--that is to use computer technology to better the lives of people," said Robinson at a function in Kampala on Saturday. Some of the products that Comtel will now start to vend include corporate email, data storage, multimedia content, web conferencing, office servers and several others.

Comtel and Microsoft will also collaborate to develop IT service and solutions that are particularly suited to the unique challenges that face businesses in developing economies like Uganda's.

"Businesses that want to utilise Microsoft and local ISVs (Independent Software Vendors) technologies can hereby do so without large investments in infrastructures, license and competence," said a statement issued by Comtel. Microsoft, according to the statement, will supply its best business development and management technologies while Comtel will provide hosting, operations and support.

Comtel was founded in 2005 and has since then developed into one of the best IT services companies in the region specialising in sales management solutions, data bases, power solutions, Wi-Fi hotspots, installation of IT systems in so called Intelligent Buildings, Blade systems and telephony.

A total of Shs 2 billion was invested by Comtel to operationalise its venture with Microsoft. John Creed who represented Microsoft said Comtel was chosen as a vendor of its products and services because of the company's demonstrated expertise and pan African ambition.

The Monitor Kampala