SEACOM, a fibre-led telecoms provider and owner of extensive ICT infrastructure across Africa, is paving the way forward for equitable employment in Africa’s ICT industry by achieving a level 3 BEE rating. Best known for launching Africa’s first broadband submarine cable system in 2009, SEACOM is a pan-African ICT leader that provides the continent with fast, reliable, and cost-effective fibre connectivity.
With the world rapidly accelerating towards a digital future, fostering equal employment opportunities in South Africa’s ICT sector is crucial for narrowing the digital divide and creating long-term social stability. SEACOM’s improved BEE status is a significant step in that direction as they own Africa’s most extensive network of ICT infrastructure and provide a multitude of IT, communication, and cloud services in South Africa, Mozambique, Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda, and other countries.
The company has gone to various lengths to achieve transformation at every level of their business, including at a management and board level. They have successfully increased their BEE rating in part through implementing a recruitment plan that prioritises the employment of women and previously disadvantaged groups, strategic procurement initiatives, and socio-economic development programmes, such as Project Isizwe, which provides free Wi-Fi to low-income neighbourhoods and taxi ranks in Johannesburg and Cape Town.
As a commercial leader in ICT that connects people and businesses across Africa to the Internet, SEACOM has long recognised the socially transformative power of technology and the importance of providing the underserved with Internet access. Empowering the communities in the areas in which SEACOM operates has been their guiding principle from day one, and the company believes that BEE is a natural extension of this philosophy.
Steve Briggs, the Chief Sales and Marketing Officer at SEACOM, commented: “Many companies improve their BEE score only to tick a box, but for SEACOM it’s a matter of principle. We are implementing change across a broad set of initiatives that not only guide us towards bigger business opportunities, but also help create a more equal society. The pandemic has exposed the growing economic divide, and it is important that corporate citizens like SEACOM address these systemic inequalities in a meaningful way.”
SEACOM launched its broadband submarine cable system along the continent’s Eastern and Southern coasts in 2009. Through its ownership of Africa’s most extensive ICT data infrastructure – including multiple subsea cables and a resilient, continent-wide IP-MPLS network – SEACOM provides a full suite of flexible, scalable and high-quality communications and cloud solutions that enable the growth of the continent’s economy.