IoT.nxt secures partnership with listed Dutch group

28 February 2018


South African innovator in Internet of Things (IoT) technology and solutions, IoT.nxt, has entered into a partnership with listed Dutch company ICT Group N.V. as part of its ongoing expansion into Europe as demand for IoT applications and digitization grows in this vast market.

“We have engaged different companies since opening our first office outside South Africa in The Hague last year, seeking appropriate partners to help drive our entry into Europe. ICT Group is ranked in 5th place in the top 15 listed ICT companies in the Computable 100 and has reached 8th place in the top 15 ICT service providers in The Netherlands. IoT.nxt’s hardware and software solutions in combination with ICT’s domain expertise in different industry verticals as well as the expert knowledge of Cloud, Machine Learning, BI and IoT, will enable us – through this partnership – to completely shape the digital transformation journey of customers,” says IoT.nxt CEO, Nico Steyn.

Joe Bester, head of IoT.nxt’s Dutch office, says the ICT Group is an ideal partner as they are leaders in their field of expertise and by partnering with them we can drive business value for any company in any industry. “Digital transformation is now a business imperative and our companies will jointly assist businesses to embark on and fast-track that process. We believe our innovation, especially around interoperability and edge intelligence, will enhance their offering and deliver fast results for customers,” Bester says.

According to Jos Bleje, ICT Group CEO, IoT.nxt’s technology agnostic platform offers horizontal integration of ‘islands’ of digitization with an unprecedented ROI. “By leveraging all existing devices and infrastructure into one single platform, visibility and new insights are provided that will open doors for new business models and (strategic) services,” says Bleje.

Frank Snijders, Business Development Executive at ICT Group notes that the partnership will offer Business grade IoT solutions for ICT’s customers’ Digital Transformation journey. “For many years several sectors have been struggling with unstructured and disparate data coming from many types of assets. With this partnership, our customers can now be supported through one interconnected, interoperable ecosystem, transforming data into actionable information and business ROI.”

IoT.nxt focuses on delivering innovative software and hardware solutions for the Internet of Things (IoT). IoT.nxt has developed an open platform framework that is used for rapid software development, integration and deployment in the Internet of Things realm. This world leading framework that makes the efficiencies, cost savings and increased revenue from IoT a reality for businesses. The major strength of the IoT.nxt framework is that the solution is technology agnostic, which overcomes the challenge of connecting any and all devices or systems. This enables companies to deploy best of breed technologies (hardware/sensors/subsystems) but at the same time also achieve interoperability and interconnectivity between all the currently deployed systems and devices from the edge to the cloud. The IoT.nxt platform allows rapid deployment and businesses to action an Internet of Things strategy with little or no disruption to current operations.

IoT.nxt is the winner of the 2017 MTN Business IoT Award, a Microsoft Gold Partner for Data Platform and was selected as one of six aspiring innovators in SA ahead of the 2016 Gartner ITXpo and Symposium hosted in Cape Town. The company opened the office in The Hague in September last year and apart from the partnership with ICT Group, are busy with finalising partnerships with a host of other companies.

For further information please contact:
Daleen van Wyk
Media Liaison
Tel: 083 302 0827
Email: [email protected]

An IoT platform unlike anything else out there

An IoT platform unlike anything else out there

26 February 2018

Recognising the radical changes in the way businesses interact with both clients and each other, Britehouse Automotive Group Executive, Callie Human, was driven to look for a way the Dimension Data division could ensure that they didn’t place unnecessary risk on their own shoulders by refusing to adapt.

“As business leaders, we realised that not only did we need to adapt to a digitised, 4th Industrial Revolution world, but that we need to help our clients do the same,” said Human.

The age-old, “where will you be in 5-10 years” question was plaguing Britehouse Automotive team and, after finding themselves back at the same answer a few too many times, digital transformation became a key priority.

“The 4th industrial revolution is real and it’s going to drive businesses in the future, and we need to adjust our businesses accordingly,” Callie Human.

So how does a company like Britehouse Automotive adapt and capitalise of digitalisation?
Easy – with the right partner.

“What decided that, from a strategic perspective, it was important that we partner with a company that had an IoT platform. In saying that, we realised there was a lot of misconception in the industry between an IoT platform and an applications platform,” said Human, and he’s not wrong. The IoT industry is stuffed full of people claiming to be able to do a number of things. The IoT.nxt team, however, just do – and have been doing for a little over 2 years already.

Captivated by this solution was seemingly commercially viable, Callie and the Britehouse team quickly realised the IoT.nxt platform was agnostic enough to enable them to integrate all of their existing platforms at the edge with no ‘rip and replace’. It was a no brainer.

“I think IoT.nxt is one of the only companies in the world who has gotten it right. It’s not an application platform and our partnership allows us to continue innovating our own core solutions while implementing their IoT solutions for our customers.”

Ability to integrate at the edge aside, there’s also the added benefit of being able to build applications on top of the IoT.nxt platform that allows Britehouse to interact with their clients, and far beyond that, too.

Since the IoT.nxt technology stack is technology agnostic, able to integrate with all the enterprise solutions out there, it is garnering a reputation for enabling the rapid deployment of a digitalisation roadmap that can be rolled out in thin slices while customers ascertain whether it would bring about the benefits they hoped it would for their businesses.

Speaking of customers – Britehouse were able to show quick return on investment to their customers, and get a roadmap into play quickly – one peppered with the opportunity to build a lot of solutions for them down the line – without needing any new platforms or technology.

No ‘rip and replace’ – taking the disruption out of disruptive technology.

“I think that the lack of disruption is ultimately why we chose IoT.nxt. In our research we found that most other solutions out there would involve ripping out and replacing a lot of existing infrastructure, but with this solution – the way IoT.nxt digitises certain things – there’s no need for that,” says Human.

The IoT.nxt solution required a smaller investment, yet allowed the Britehouse Automotive team to be quicker to market and start to realise ROI for their customers faster, too. Agility in deployment means the risk and investment typically associated with a digitalisation strategy are notably absent when IoT.nxt are involved.

This allows you to show much more value to your customer which helps us build a much better relationship with our customers and, again, open the path for the future to build a lot of solutions on that platform for our customers.

So what is it, exactly, that lets Callie Human and the Britehouse Automotive team rest easily at night? It’s not knowing that they’re using the best possible IoT solution available to them. It’s knowing that their ideas will brought to life – and then some! – by a team that continues to question, innovate and adopt a ‘can-do’ attitude as they integrate and optimise entire businesses.

“They’re always willing to always try new things and, as we’ve worked together, we’ve been able to develop better solutions for our customers.

“It feels like they (IoT.nxt) are working within our business, as a part of our business, which is exactly what a partnership should be. I think is what has made our partnership over the last 12-18 months so successful,” says Human.

In closing, Human noted that what IoT.nxt has in their back pocket is unlike anything else there – and they’ve done the digging, pouring through the hundreds of platforms out there.

Companies need to understand megatrends to serve customers in the future

Companies need to understand megatrends to serve customers in the future

19 February 2018

Internet of Things technology will be one of the key catalysts to how we shape our future world, especially in the automotive industry.

This is the view of Michael Frans, Head of Business Development and Strategy for Automotive and Manufacturing Industries at T-Systems, in conversation with IoT.nxt about what new technologies will mean for business.
“To serve enterprise customers it is important to understand the megatrends in technology, in order to assist them in being ready for the new wave of technology. This includes cloud technologies and IoT. We believe that the automotive industry will become of the biggest digitalised industries in the world. It is therefore critical that a company like T-Systems understands these technologies and build competencies around where we can add the biggest value,” he says.

He notes, however, that companies cannot be anything and everything to customers. “This new world, especially in the Internet of Things, requires deep competencies. It absolutely requires expertise at every stage through the cycle. A company such as ourselves cannot provide every element required, which is why partnerships are critical. We need an eco-system of partners in order to serve our customers. Although T-Systems is a huge global business, we cannot specialise in everything.”

T-Systems spends a lot of time to investigate and interrogate what is available in the market place, especially as so many new entrants are entering the sector claiming to have new technologies and in some cases, companies have a wide offering trying to cover many different aspects. Which Frans says is unrealistic.

T-Systems first engaged IoT.nxt at the Gartner Symposium ITXpo of 2016, hosted in Cape Town, and took due consideration to get to know the company, its offering and its team members.

“IoT.nxt has found a niche to form a critical part of that eco-system to deliver value add to customers. As a fast developing start-up IoT.nxt is innovate, agile and enthusiastic. From their perspective dealing with a large multi-national company takes patience as the processes are so different. Yet, we formed a relationship over time and now consider them a key partner for IoT solutions,” he says.

“We want the solutions for our customers that IoT.nxt can deliver and value their agility, sense of excitement and the speed of delivery,” he added.

He highlighted IoT.nxt’s Raptor™ technology and says it is ‘the best of breed’ T-Systems has come across for months. “This technology differentiates IoT.nxt beyond most players in the market. Therein lies the value. So called ‘cool’ hardware that cannot add value is not what we are looking for, the Raptor adds significant value to the entire solution.”

He concluded to say that as the partnership develops over time, he foresees that there will be little distinction between where T-Systems starts and ends and where IoT.nxt starts and end. “I look forward to reaching that stage.”

A shift is unfolding in the mining industry

12 February 2018

Report by Daleen van Wyk, Corporate Communication

Mining companies are now ready for disruption and looking to introduce new technologies to drive efficiencies and revive the industry. This represents a dramatic shift in attitudes compared to a year ago.

This is the major trend identified by team IoT.nxt at the Mining Indaba hosted in Cape Town early February.

“We demonstrated the intelligent mine of the future in partnership with Deloitte and it was clear that the mining industry is looking to the future. As the 4th Industrial Revolution gains traction we expect to see mainstream adoption of innovative new technology in the mining industry,” says IoT.nxt team leader at the 2018 Mining Indaba and Director of Partnerships: Mining, Eric Croeser.

“We detected a total turnaround in attitudes compared to delegates we engaged with at the 2017 Indaba. Apart from a readiness for disruption, mining companies are actually ready to invest, which is very encouraging for an industry that remains a major employer,” Croeser says.

“There is a broad understanding that the digital way is the pivot to take the industry forward. Intelligent edge computing will be the driver to unlock systems efficiency and value to mining companies,” he added.

The digital approach is valuable because it delivers an interconnected, near real time, data driven eco-system using sensory devices on legacy and modern equipment to enhance an organisation’s ability to move from reactive to pro-active decision making. “In and industry like mining that involves so many different processes, this is extremely valuable,” Croeser says.

He noted, however, that no single company can provide everything. “You need an eco-system of partners that work together; each contributing a component of digitisation. This is Deloitte’s approach to its ‘Intelligent Mining’ project and IoT.nxt is one of its selected partners to deliver this.”

Fin24 reported that Michelle Ash, chief innovation officer of mining company Barrick, a panelist at the Indaba, said mines cannot stay where they are. “If we do we will not be able to mine anymore. Mining companies need to innovate or risk closing down.”

Ash elaborated on the use of everyday technology like smartphones and tablets and how this can improve efficiencies. “Technology should be based on human-centered design to create ease of use as opposed to having people study complex manuals.

”Financial Mail reported in its edition of 9 February 2018 that the industry’s contribution to GDP was 6.8% in 2017, slightly below the 7% recorded in 2016. “In real terms the industry grew 3.17% and contributed R312bn to the economy,” the magazine reported.

• IoT.nxt participated at the 2018 Mining Indaba in partnership with Deloitte [] as part of the global consultancy’s ‘Intelligent Mining’ project.
• The Indaba attracts about 6 000 attendees; mostly from sub-Sahara Africa but also from many from other parts of the world including Canada, India and Australia.

The sky’s the limit: How Enaleni solves customer problems with IoT.nxt

The sky’s the limit: How Enaleni solves customer problems with IoT.nxt

9  February 2018

The claim has been made time and again: Internet of Things (IoT) solutions will change the world. But for Enaleni Holdings, an engineering firm that specialises in project management and physical asset management, this is a truth they see in action every day. After making a strategic choice to incorporate and embrace IoT solutions into their portfolio, the level 1 BBBEE company has been solving problems for customers in new and exciting ways that matter.

“IoT is big in our business,” said Maxwell Nemutshili, Business Development Director at Enaleni. “It makes up about 25 percent at the moment and we are planning to ramp it up to close to 50 percent of the business by end of the year 2018.”

Such an ambitious target speaks to the market potential and reality that Enaleni, which means ‘place of abundance’, has experienced. Since taking on the mission to introduce the Fourth Industrial Revolution to its markets, the company has had great success in delivering enhanced value to both engineers on the ground and decision makers. This is particularly significant around physical asset performance tracking, an area Enaleni excels in, but has also delivered in other areas of the business.

“IoT technology is important to us,” explained Enaleni’s MD, Sicelo Myeni. “Our key focus is in physical asset management, so we see it as an enabler for us to be able to provide services to clients so that we can add value to their bottom line. Physical asset management data capturing previously has been predominantly a manual exercise in most cases, whereas now with the internet of things you are able to get realtime information tracking of that asset’s performance, whether it’s the location or utilisation.”

This is not merely enthusiasm for IoT. Enaleni has found that customers generally grasp the benefits of these new solutions. The challenge instead is that of delivery: can the solution be implemented quickly and cost-effectively? Such assurances are crucial to building and maintaining customer relationships, said Myeni:

“The importance of fastly deploying the technology is key. Clients want to see quick results, especially on the technology side where it’s new in the market. So if you go in there, if you bring technology that is slow to implement, people quickly lose hope and trust in the technology. You need to show results for people to buy in. The quicker you deploy and people see the results, the easier for clients to have a buy-in on the technology. The speed is very important.”

Such success hinges on the right partners. Both Myeni and Nemutshili underlined the importance of a partner reinforcing their ability to deploy the right solution quickly, at the right price and through interactions that align with Enaleni’s culture. Even though there are several IoT companies globally that can tick some of the boxes, only IoT.nxt meets all the requirements.

“IoT.nxt provides IoT platforms and with that we as Enaleni don’t have to develop that platform,” said Nemutshili. “But we can play a big role in customising that for our clients, and also doing the project management and integration of all different systems to the client. IoT.nxt fits in very well, because they are locally based and the cost to develop is quite lower. The other thing is the Raptor, which can integrate different devices and other systems.”

IoT.nxt’s proprietary Raptor bridging technology has been a huge advantage for Enaleni, which counts industries such as mines and chemical manufacturers as among their clients. These are industries with a lot of established investments that they want to elevate into the new era of real-time decision making. By utilising the Raptor and its ecosystem, Enaleni is capable of leveraging their own expertise without wringing hands over the nitty gritty of getting the established to communicate with the new.

“They understand the market, the South African market,” Myeni concluded. “Most of the guys there have got operational experience. So the solutions presented are practical. We’ve enjoyed a good working relationship, there’s a good understanding between Enaleni and IoT.nxt. There is an understanding from IoT.nxt that there is a big opportunity in the market with smart asset management in the different industries. The sky is the limit.”