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03
OCT

TC|Daily | Behind the Sasol Solar Challenge, with owner Rob Walker

Rob Walker, owner and director of the Sasol Solar Challenge, joins TechCentral’s TC|Daily to chat about the biennial event that sees local and international teams “racing” entirely solar-powered vehicles across the length and breadth of South Africa.
Founded in 2008 by now GridCars CEO Winstone Jordaan (himself a recent guest on TC|Daily), the 2022 edition of the Sasol Solar Challenge has just concluded. In this episode of TC|Daily, Walker, who bought the event from Jordaan in 2019, talks about the origins of the race and the highlights of the 2022 edition.
Walker explains that the “race”, which covers more than 2 000km, is as much about inspiring the youth into the science and engineering fields, with talks at schools along the route, as it is about the teams showing off their design, manufacturing and strategy skills.
The ultimate winner is the team that manages to clock the most kilometres travelled. The cars’ solar panels are at the “cutting edge of energy technology and stretch over the entire surface of the unique, knee-high cars”.
“The driver sits in an aerodynamic cockpit. Every piece of electronics, carbon fibre, aluminium and steel is as customised as the parts on a Formula 1 racer,” the Sasol Solar Challenge website explains.
“The event runs on public roads, sharing space with trucks and regular traffic, and passes through multiple small towns, to the fascination and excitement of local communities who come out in their thousands to witness science and technology in action.”
02
OCT

Everything PC S02E02 - 'The house that Bill built'

This is the South African technology show all about personal computers. This season of Everything PC is sponsored by HP and Microsoft.
In episode 2 of season 2, hosts Duncan McLeod and Gerhard Pretorius chat everything Windows and Microsoft. Among other things, they discuss:
* Does Microsoft still care about Windows?
* Does the operating still matter?
* Windows 11 - how is it, and are we getting Windows 12 soon?
* Does Microsoft really love open source and Linux?
* Windows as a service and Windows in the cloud
* Microsoft as a hardware player with the Surface line-up - is it working?
Don't miss the show, and if you don't already subscribe to TechCentral, please do so.
28
SEP

TC|Daily | Massmart’s big e-commerce play – the inside story

Walmart-owned retail group Massmart has ambitious plans to become one of the most significant players in e-commerce in South Africa.
In this episode of TC|Daily, TechCentral’s new technology show, the retail group’s head of e-commerce, Sylvester John, joins Duncan McLeod in-studio to unpack its plans.
John, who was a key figure behind the development of e-commerce platforms at Walmart, believes the online shopping market in South Africa is poised for lift-off – from less than 4% of total retail sales today, he expects the figure to jump to about 12% by the end of the decade.
In the interview, John talks about:
• How the Covid-19 pandemic changed the e-commerce game globally and in South Africa.
• His predictions for the growth of e-commerce in South Africa.
• How South Africa compares to other markets, including other developing countries, when it comes to e-commerce.
• How Massmart is using its retail brands such as Makro, Builders and Game to go to market while building a supportive backend infrastructure.
• Why the group is firmly focused on developing for mobile first.
• The acquisitions of WumDrop and OneCart and what they bring to Massmart.
• The relevance of Black Friday – and what Massmart has planned for the 2022 event.
• The impending launch of Amazon.com retail operations in South Africa and why Massmart is ready for the competition.
• The importance of B2B in e-commerce in South Africa.
Don’t miss this fascinating discussion with a key player in e-commerce in South Africa.
Did you enjoy this content? Please subscribe to our channel.
26
SEP

TC|Daily | Simon Dingle on the ZARP rand stablecoin, the Merge and more

Former technology journalist and now author and entrepreneur Simon Dingle is the guest in this episode of TechCentral's TC|Daily.
Dingle, who co-founded the rand-pegged stablecoin ZARP with Kenny Inggs, chats about some of the latest development in the world of cryptocurrencies.
In this episode of TC|Daily, he unpacks:
* The thinking behind ZARP
* What it takes to run a stablecoin
* Stablecoin regulation
* Ethereum's big "Merge" - how important was it?
* Is crypto bad for the planet?
* What to watch for next in crypto
* And more...
Don't miss the discussion.
23
SEP

Everything PC S02E01 - 'The fat little kid'

The South African technology show all about personal computers is back for season 2. This season is sponsored by HP and Microsoft.
In episode 1 of the new season, hosts Duncan McLeod and Gerhard Pretorius chat about developments at the big chip companies covered in season 1, including Intel, AMD and Nvidia.
They then look forward to what's coming in the world of PCs for the rest of the year, including a looming battle over next-generation GPUs between AMD and Nvidia.
A new segment of the show also looks back at technologies from decades ago - and this week Gerhard has brought in an ancient Maxtor hard drive.
21
SEP

TC|Daily | GridCars, and the race to build SA's EV charging network

Alviva Holdings-owned GridCars has built South Africa’s largest network of charging stations for electric vehicles – more than 300 so far – yet the company is just getting started, says CEO Winstone Jordaan.
Jordaan joined TC|Daily, TechCentral new technology show, for a discussion about the roll-out EV charging infrastructure in South Africa.
In the show, Jordaan talks about the genesis of GridCars and why he thinks the EV revolution is about to get going in South Africa, despite the country’s electricity supply challenges.
If you’re at all interested in EVs, or indeed the future of motoring in South Africa, don’t miss this fascinating interview.
19
SEP

TC|Daily | PayShap: The fintech revolution coming to SA’s payments system

Big changes are coming to the payments industry in South Africa early next year, including cheap and instantaneous payments directly to mobile numbers – no bank account number or branch code required.
BankservAfrica has been working behind the scenes for years on a major system overhaul that, when it goes live, will dramatically shake up the financial services sector in South Africa, ushering in a new era of fintech-led innovation.
Through a project called the Rapid Payments Programme (RPP) – which will be launched commercially under the name PayShap – South Africans will be able to transfer money instantly from their phones, even, once developed, from instant messaging apps like WhatsApp.
The new platform will usher in a dramatic modernisation of the payments system, with cloud services, open application programming interfaces and a flexible microservices architecture forming the foundation for further development by industry players.
Indeed, the launch PayShap early in 2023 promises to herald a new era of rapid digital payments in South Africa that BankservAfrica believes could begin to displace cash from the economy – astonishingly, despite the country’s sophisticated banking sector, almost nine in 10 transactions are still cash based.
In this episode of TC|Daily, BankservAfrica CEO Jan Pilbauer joins TechCentral editor Duncan McLeod in-studio to talk about the RPP, the launch of PayShap, what it means for innovation in banking and fintech in South Africa, and how companies, including fintech start-ups and social media companies, can use it to develop cutting-edge solutions.
BankservAfrica is a non-profit company established 50 years ago that serves as a financial clearing house for the financial sector. It is a vital cog in South Africa’s economy and is owned by the big banks – Absa, Nedbank, Standard Bank and FirstRand each hold about 23.1% of its equity, while the remaining 7.5% is held by an entity called Dandyshelf, whose shareholders include Capitec, Investec, Bidvest and Sasfin.
15
SEP

TC|Daily | Andy Higgins and the amazing story behind Bob Group

Andy Higgins is a pioneer in e-commerce in South Africa – just don’t call him a “veteran”, he says, because the industry is still just getting started and he plans to be a part of its development for years to come.
In this interview on TechCentral’s new technology show, TC|Daily, Higgins joins Duncan McLeod in the studio to talk about his latest venture, called Bob Group, which is an amalgamation of two businesses he either founded or c-founded, Bidorbuy and uAfrica.
Higgins, who started Bidorbuy in 1999 at the height of the dot-com bubble, has many interesting stories to tell – about venture capital excesses, global expansion and the inevitable pain that followed the dot-com collapse – and he shares some of these tales in this show.
Now Higgins and his team are launching a new venture, which he hopes will make it easier for small and medium businesses to sell their products online in South Africa. It’s going to put Bob Group on a collision course with well-funded rivals like Takealot – and possibly Amazon from next year – but Higgins says he’s ready for it.
Bob Group will offer a full suite of e-commerce services to South African businesses, including an online marketplace, inventory management, order fulfilment, a shipping tool, online payments and courier software as a service. It “offers everything e-commerce to all South African consumers and companies operating online, whether they are looking to sell, buy – or both”.
“The merger means that merchants will now be offered a complete set of e-commerce services, including payments, logistics and a marketplace,” Higgins said earlier this week about the launch of Bob Group.
In this episode of TC|Daily, he unpacks more details about Bob Group, and gives his views on what the (still not officially confirmed) launch of Amazon in South Africa early next year will mean for the local e-commerce landscape.
Don’t miss this fascinating discussion.
15
SEP

Impact Series | Tesh Durvasula on the African data centre opportunity

Africa Data Centres’ newly appointed CEO, Tesh Durvasula, says investment in ICT in Africa is creating nearly boundless opportunities for growth.
Investments in new undersea cables, terrestrial fibre networks and data centres – the latter led by companies like ADC – is helping meet fast-expanding demand from a youthful African population that is coming online for the first time.
Speaking on TechCentral’s new Impact Series technology show, Durvasula explains why he thinks population trends are fuelling infrastructure investments in ICT.
He unpacks the investments that Africa Data Centres, fresh with funding from the US International Development Finance Corporation through its parent, Cassava Technologies, is making on the continent – including expansion into Egypt, Morocco, Senegal and Morocco.
In the interview, Durvasula also talks about:
* His career background and how he came to Africa Data Centres;
* How Cassava Technologies is structured and how Africa Data Centres works with other companies in the group;
* The size of Africa Data Centres today and its plans to build new data centres across Africa;
* Why new data centre builds are becoming increasingly focused around population centres rather than centres of biggest GDP;
* The power-supply challenges associated with building data centres on the continent;
* How new submarine cables like Equiano are going to change the ball game; and
* Technology trends driving cloud adoption in Africa.
Don’t miss the discussion.
13
SEP

TC|Daily | Mercedes-Benz: 50% of our car sales in SA will be EVs by 2026

Despite the challenges in convincing South African drivers to ditch fossil fuel-powered vehicles for electric alternatives, Mercedes-Benz South Africa co-CEO Mark Raine predicts that more than half of the company’s car sales locally by the end of 2026 will be fully electric.
That’s just four years from now (plus a few months), yet Raine believes the South African luxury vehicle-buying market is ready for this massive shift. And he’s betting big on it, with Mercedes announcing four new EVs coming to local showrooms that it hopes will, umm, electrify fans of the badge.
Speaking on TC|Daily, TechCentral’s new technology show, Raine unpacked in an interview with Duncan McLeod what must happen in the coming years for EVs to take off in the same way they are expected to in markets like Europe and North America.
In the show, Raine chats about the state of the industry in South Africa following the Covid pandemic and last year’s riots in KwaZulu-Natal, as well as Mercedes’ investments locally, including in its flagship manufacturing plant in East London, which manufactures C-Class Mercedes-Benz vehicles for markets around the world.
In the show, Raine talks about:
• Why he believes the local market is ready to adopt EVs, despite concerns about load shedding, charging networks and range anxiety;
• Whether government is doing enough to encourage the uptake of EVs (spoiler: it’s not); and
• Whether we can expect Mercedes to build EVs in South Africa anytime soon.
He then takes TC|Daily viewers through the EV models that Mercedes is introducing in South Africa this year: the EQA, the EQB, the EQC and the top-of-the-line EQS.
If you haven't already subscribed to TechCentral's YouTube channel, please do so now. TC|Daily is also available on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts and Pocket Casts.
13
SEP

Behind the scenes at CipherWave [promoted]

The telecommunications landscape is more competitive than ever and is scaling rapidly. In this environment, CipherWave is building a portfolio of service businesses.

In this podcast, TechCentral gets a sneak peek into what CipherWave is building and where the business is headed.

The holding company, led by CEO Wayne D’Sa, has a number of subsidiaries, through which D'Sa and his teams are delivering technology solutions to growing businesses -- with a deliberate focus on value creation.

These subsidiaries are:

Aggregation Networks
Home-Connect
CipherWave Business Solutions
Broadlink

These people-centric entities all complement each other in terms of service offering, says D'Sa in the podcast.

The next phase of growth is in further enhancing user experience through reliable infrastructure and investment in best-in-class technology.

CipherWave is a leading tier-1 Internet service provider. Learn more in this interview with D’Sa, or visit www.cipherwave.co.za.
12
SEP

Retail Capital partners with Sage and AWCape for rapid growth [promoted]

Retail Capital identified Sage Intacct as a cost-effective solution for its business, which has been experiencing exponential growth.
Chief financial officer Tyler Posthumus studied Retail Capital’s requirements to scale, and quite specifically stipulated the need for a robust ERP solution with API (application programming interface) capabilities for automation. There also needed to be minimal disruption to the business.
Through an existing and well-defined partnership with AWCape, Retail Capital switched from Sage 300cloud to Sage Intacct. The immediate and long-term benefits are discussed in this podcast and so, too, is the importance of trusted human interaction.
Listening to this episode will give you great comfort in planning your own modernisation as well as insight into why systems can create efficiencies that far outweigh any perceived inconvenience associated with change.
For an overview of Retail Capital’s story, and to hear to the company’s experience, watch or listen to this podcast as Posthumus, along with Jeff Ryan, MD for AWCape (the implementation partner), and Gerhard Hartman, vice president: medium business, Sage Africa and Middle East, talk about the project.
Visit www.awcape.co.za for more information.

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