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Technology & Communications News

Environmental plan for South African segment of SKA radio telescope gazetted

By: Rebecca Campbell     Updated 5 hours ago The Integrated Environmental Management Plan (IEMP) for the Phase 1 of the Square Kilometre Array mid-frequency array (SKA1_MID) was gazetted by Environmental Affairs Minister Nomvula Mokonyane on Friday, the South African Radio Astronomy Observatory (Sarao) announced on Monday. The SKA is an... 

MTN drops as Nigeria urges court not to block $2bn penalty

By: Bloomberg     26th March 2019 MTN Group shares fell almost 7% after Nigeria’s government said Africa’s biggest mobile operator evaded taxes and urged a Lagos court not to block a $2-billion penalty. The High Court of Lagos should throw out the Johannesburg-based company’s attempt to stop it from paying backdated taxes, TA... 

Local company ADC stresses it, not Paramount, owns the Ahrlac military aircraft design

By: Rebecca Campbell     26th March 2019 South African private-sector company Aerospace Development Corporation (ADC) on Tuesday clarified that it, and not the Paramount Group, is the original equipment manufacturer, design authority and manufacturer of the Ahrlac aircraft. (Ahrlac is an acronym for Advanced High Performance... 

Local company ADC stresses it, not Paramount, owns the Ahrlac military aircraft design
Photo by Aerospace DEvelopment Corporation
An Ahrlac aircraft under assembly

Icasa appoints acting chairperson

By: Creamer Media Reporter      25th March 2019 The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) on Monday announced the appointment of Dr Keabetswe Modimoeng as acting chairperson, effective immediately. Modimoeng, appointed following a special council meeting, will remain in the acting position until a permanent successor to... 

EOH Microsoft licence partnership woes deepen

By: Schalk Burger     25th March 2019 JSE-listed information technology services company EOH announced in a statement on Monday that it had, on March 12, received a 30-day notice period from software multinational Microsoft Ireland of its intention to terminate the Partner Network Agreement with a number of EOH group companies, and... 

Cape Town forum to look at how data can enable South African cities to build resilient govts

By: African News Agency      25th March 2019 Cape Town is hosting a conference from Monday which will explore how cities can utilise data to build resilient and responsive local governments. In a statement, the city said the British High Commission had brought in representatives from United Kingdom organisations specialising in the use of... 

Japan focusing attention on Indian Ocean rim countries for mutual benefit

By: Rebecca Campbell     22nd March 2019 Japanese international strategy was today focusing on the rim of the Indian Ocean, highlighted Keio University Faculty of Law Professor Yuichi Hosoya in a recent address to the South African Institute of International Affairs at its headquarters on the University of the Witwatersrand campus in... 

Denel seeking contingency funding as it outlines turnaround strategy

By: Rebecca Campbell     22nd March 2019 State-owned South African defence industrial group Denel is preparing an application for funding from the R13-billion contingency reserve announced by Finance Minister Tito Mboweni in his 2019/2020 Budget speech. “We know that [the] Government is cognisant of the fact that Denel is in need of... 

Communications Minister removes Mohlaloga as Icasa chair

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     20th March 2019 Communications Minister Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams has given effect to a National Assembly resolution and removed Rubben Mohlaloga as a councillor and chairperson of the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa). On March 19, the National Assembly resolved that Mohlaloga should be... 

Convicted fraudster seeks to stop parliamentary processes aimed at removing him as Icasa chair

By: News24Wire      18th March 2019 Fraud and money-laundering convict Rubben Mohlaloga will not only be fighting to stay out of prison but to also remain chairperson of the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa). Sentenced to 20 years imprisonment last month but currently on bail pending an appeal of his... 

SA, French space agencies sign MoU on future cooperation

By: Rebecca Campbell     15th March 2019 The South African National Space Agency (Sansa) and its French counterpart, the Centre National d’Études Spatiales (CNES – the National Centre for Space Studies), signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in Pretoria at the end of February, laying the foundations for future cooperation between... 

Radioisotope maker faces heavy losses this year but should regain market share

By: Rebecca Campbell     15th March 2019 NTP Radioisotopes (NTP), a subsidiary of the State-owned South African Nuclear Energy Corporation (Necsa), is expected to make a loss this year of R224-million, in comparison to profits of R108-million last year and of R184-million in 2017. This was stated in a written reply to a Parliamentary... 

Journey of Water focuses on river catchment

By: Jessica Oosthuizen     15th March 2019 Freshwater scarcity in South Africa is a topical issue which is why nongovernmental organisation the World Wide Fund for Nature South Africa (WWF-SA) stages a Journey of Water every two years to highlight the importance of protecting the country’s strategic water source areas. WWF’s Journey of... 

Grain conveyor solution system offered

15th March 2019 Heavy lift forklift supplier BLT World offers dependable solutions for specific problems at the transfer points of conveyor systems in bulk materials handling, such as grain in the food and beverage industry. “ScrapeTec Trading’s German-engineered products have been specially developed for the... 

Quality inspection results in significant time and money savings

15th March 2019 With quality inspection being critical in all manufacturing and packaging lines, especially in the food and beverage sector, industrial automation solutions provider Omron vison product manager Werner Das says being able to catch a defective product before the products are shipped to customers in... 

Software simplifies food manufacturing processes

By: Thabi Madiba     15th March 2019 With supply chain waste, as well as health and safety issues, affecting the food and beverage industry, software company Syspro Africa’s enterprise resource planning (ERP) software can allow for and help simplify food manufacturing processes. Syspro Africa professional services manager Doug... 

Software simplifies food manufacturing processes
Photo by Bloomberg
POOR PLANNING Too often, poor planning in the supply chain results in too many incorrect products, which leaves too little cash to keep the right products in stock

Commonwealth digital connectivity initiative to be led by SA and the UK

By: Rebecca Campbell     15th March 2019 The UK and South Africa have agreed to co-lead the Commonwealth Digital Connectivity Agenda. This is aimed at supporting inclusive growth and sustainable development in Commonwealth countries by promoting the exchange of best practices, experiences and views between the international body’s... 

Customer behaviour specialist moves to grow engineering teams

By: Schalk Burger     15th March 2019 Artificial intelligence (AI) customer behaviour company Xineoh will use a $1.5-million equity investment completed in December to grow its engineering team and its marketing and sales team to sustain its growth, says Xineoh CEO Vian Chinner. Xineoh’s engineering team grapples with complex data... 

Customer behaviour specialist  moves to grow engineering teams
VIAN CHINNER The company expects demand for its services to increase over the next few years owing to digitalisation

Local firm tackles general-use mobile payments

By: Schalk Burger     15th March 2019 Local mobile payments company Celbux has developed a platform to address the crucial enablers of low-costs and ease of use for an open, general-use mobile payments environment, says Celbux CEO Kobus du Plooy. The platform-as-a-service architecture is open to consumers and businesses. There are no... 

Local firm tackles general-use mobile payments
KOBUS DU PLOOY The simplest technology solution is the way to solve real problems

Data mobility seen as key to supporting new cloud, digital era

By: Schalk Burger     15th March 2019 Changing from physical to virtual information technology (IT) resources – like cloud systems – requires that companies monitor and manage the movement and security of data across on-premise and external resources, says backup and intelligent data management multinational Veeam Software Southern... 

MTN aims to expand local shareholding of its Ugandan unit to 20% – CEO

By: Reuters     14th March 2019 MTN Group's Uganda unit is looking to boost local shareholding to 20% from 4% this year, the South African telecoms giant's Chief Executive Robert Shuter said. The move to expand local ownership appears a bow to pressure from Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni who has said he would like the firm... 

MTN to list Nigeria unit towards April and May – MTN Nigeria CEO

By: Reuters     13th March 2019 MTN Group expects its Nigeria unit to list on the local stock exchange "probably more towards April and May," the unit's chief executive said on Wednesday. The listing should be no later than halfway through the year, said Ferdi Moolman, chief executive officer of MTN Nigeria, speaking to... 

Ten worst South African performers tell tale of battling economy

By: Bloomberg     13th March 2019 It’s not even the end of the first quarter and already there’s a plethora of once-significant South African companies that have either collapsed or had their share prices hit the wall. The likes of sugar producer Tongaat Hulett, tech provider EOH Holdings, Blue Label Telecoms and Aspen Pharmacare... 

South Africa signs treaty establishing the SKA Observatory

By: Creamer Media Reporter      12th March 2019 South Africa has signed the international treaty establishing the Square Kilometre Array Observatory (SKAO) – an intergovernmental organisation tasked with building and operating the world's most powerful radio astronomy telescope. Science and Technology Minister Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane signed... 

South Africa signs treaty establishing the SKA Observatory
Science and Technology Minister Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane

AECI’s Lake Foods, Christian Hansen launch dairy application centre

By: Simone Liedtke     12th March 2019 Food and beverage company Lake Foods, a division of South African chemicals group AECI, on Tuesday launched its new dairy application centre in Cape Town. The centre will assist customers with new product innovation and development, as well as product improvements. 

AECI’s Lake Foods, Christian Hansen launch dairy application centre

Fire fraudster Rubben Mohlaloga from Icasa immediately, MPs agree

By: News24Wire      12th March 2019 Parliament's Portfolio Committee on Communications has resolved that Independent Communications Authority of SA (Icasa) chairperson Rubben Mohlaloga be removed from his position with immediate effect. MPs met on Tuesday to discuss Mohlaloga's future after he was sentenced to 20 years in prison... 

Fire fraudster Rubben Mohlaloga from Icasa immediately, MPs agree
Icasa Chairperson, Rubben Mohlaloga

Social partnerships a cornerstone of skills development – Manamela

By: Marleny Arnoldi     12th March 2019 Higher Education and Training Deputy Minister Buti Manamela on Tuesday stressed the importance of social partnerships as a cornerstone of skills development. In an opening speech at the Skills Development Summit, he noted that the event was being held against a background of low economic growth... 

Social partnerships a cornerstone of skills development – Manamela
Higher Education and Training Deputy Minister Buti Manamela

UAVs, ecommerce set to transform air cargo

By: Rebecca Campbell     8th March 2019 Unmanned aerial vehicles, popularly called drones, and e-commerce (in particular the global giant e-commerce enterprises such as Amazon and Alibaba) look set to transform the air freight industry worldwide, including in Africa. This was the general opinion at a panel discussion at the recent Air... 

Rolfes investigating nanotechnology paints to diversify business

By: Schalk Burger     8th March 2019 Local solvents and chemicals company Rolfes Chemicals is investigating the applications of nanotechnology in coatings to diversify its business in Southern Africa, says Rolfes Chemicals MD Clive Govender. Nanocoatings contain particles in the nanometre scale. These nanoparticles build a... 

Two new liquid analysers added

8th March 2019 South Africa-based company Yokogawa has added two new solutions to the Opre analyser family with the development of the FLXA402 four-wire liquid analyser and the SA11 smart adaptor. These two new liquid analysis products will be offered as part of the Sencom 4.0 series. It is expected that they... 

Two new liquid  analysers added
NEW TECHNOLOGIES This new solution also facilitates connection to the cloud and an industrial Internet of Things environment for improved field maintenance.

Satellite services extending reach of mobile networks

By: Schalk Burger     8th March 2019 Multi-orbit satellite services are helping to extend the reach of mobile networks into areas where the economic feasibility of traditional roll-out models is challenging by providing a mobile Network-as-a-Service offering that includes software-defined radio access network combined with a... 

Satellite services extending  reach of mobile networks
CHRISTIAN OLSSON The low cost of satellite backhaul enables delivery of connectivity to remote areas

MTN posts significantly higher FY18 earnings 

By: Natasha Odendaal     7th March 2019 JSE-listed telecommunications giant MTN on Thursday posted a 85.2% increase in its reported headline earnings per share (HEPS), from 182c in 2017 to 337c during the year ended December 31, 2018. While a significant jump on the prior year, HEPS could have reached 565c apiece; however MTN had to... 

UCT academic wins global chemical engineers award

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     7th March 2019 University of Cape Town (UCT) academic Dr Dyllon Randall has become the first African recipient of the prestigious global Institution of Chemical Engineers (IChemE) Warner Prize. The prize is awarded biennially to people who show “exceptional promise” in sustainable chemical process technology,... 

UCT academic wins global chemical engineers award
University of Cape Town academic Dr Dyllon Randall

CSIR develops medicine dispensing robot 

7th March 2019 The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research has, in partnership with Right ePharmacy, developed a pharmacy automation robot for medicine dispensing. Tasneem Bulbulia tells us more. 

CSIR develops medicine dispensing robot
CSIR develops medicine dispensing robot

MTN is said to earmark stake in Botswana venture for sale

By: Bloomberg     6th March 2019 MTN Group is considering the sale of its stake in Botswana’s largest wireless carrier, according to people familiar with the matter, as CEO Rob Shuter seeks to reduce the number of countries in which the company operates. A disposal of the interest in Botswana’s Mascom could generate as much as... 

Denel aiming to access contingency fund, confident about future despite ratings cut 

By: Rebecca Campbell     6th March 2019 State-owned South African defence industrial group Denel is preparing an application for funding from the R13-billion contingency reserve announced by Finance Minister Tito Mboweni in his 2019/20 Budget speech. “We know that [the] government is cognisant of the fact that Denel is in need of... 

Denel aiming to access contingency fund, confident about future despite ratings cut
Photo by Duane Daws/Creamer Media
One of Denel’s signature products, the 6x6 G6 155 mm self-propelled gun, on display at the group’s head office

Britain and South Africa to jointly lead Commonwealth digital connectively initiative

By: Rebecca Campbell     5th March 2019 The UK and South Africa jointly announced on Tuesday that they had agreed to co-lead the Commonwealth Digital Connectivity Agenda. This is aimed at supporting inclusive growth and sustainable development in Commonwealth countries by promoting the exchange of best practices, experiences and views... 

Britain and South Africa to jointly lead Commonwealth digital connectively initiative
Photo by Crown Copyright
Dr Liam Fox (left) meets Dr Rob Davies (right), in London
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