Andile Tshuma, Business Reporter
LISTED technology services firm, Cassava Smartech Zimbabwe, has challenged manufacturing industries in the country to embrace digital platforms and modern ways of doing business to match global trends and increase production.
Cassava chief executive officer, Mrs Dorothy Zimuto, said viable industries the world over were riding on digital technologies and local firms could not afford to be left behind.
She was speaking after the launch of the Vaya logistics unit, an additional entity that deals with trucks and van services under its Vaya Division, during the just ended Zimbabwe International Trade Fair (ZITF) in Bulawayo.
“For industry to flourish, we must follow global trends and move with the times. Nowadays everything happens online and most businesses are going digital.
“Some people may want to say that Econet wants to take over industry but we are using our information and communication technology resources to ensure that we are fully digitised as a country.
“We must as Zimbabweans use our resources for the betterment of our country and the provision of quality service to achieve the goals that we intend to achieve and we must complement each other in our efforts,” she said.
Mrs Zimuto said the services offered by Cassava were not in competition with any business but were rather complementing what is already on the market.
“We are not competing with already existing firms but we are complementing available services through creating platforms that allow for more players to enter the market and promote ease of doing business,” she said.
Mrs Zimuto said Vaya logistics, which is under Cassava Smartech, a subsidiary of the Econet Group, will ensure that people were able to move cargo from the comfort of their homes or offices.
“Technology is everywhere. In agriculture farmers need farming tips, in health there is need for an on call ambulance and airlifting service online.
“People need a service to shop from home and have their parcels delivered to their specific locations. People need daily health tips on how to improve on their health and wellness, people need to be entertained and need music in their phones, people need to order food, need sermons and other services such as motivational and biblical quotes to uplift their spirits here and there, people want convenience,” said Mrs Zimuto.
She said managing time was very important because time was a very precious resource.
“We are losing a lot of revenue by executing a lot of our tasks manually. Making use of digital platforms and using these mobile applications will help us use our time more productively and in turn we will be generating more revenue for the economy,” said Mrs Zimuto.
Speaking at the same event, one of the group’s senior executives, Mr Fungai Mandiveyi said the telecommunications giant was working to ensure that almost all industries in the country were digitised.
“The future is digital and as Econet we are striving to ensure that while we are in business, we bring on board other businesses and bring them to the digital train because as they grow we also grow.
“Businesses cannot afford to be left behind as they risk ceasing to exist in the future. A lot of deals are now done on the smart phone, which brings convenience and saves time, which is one of the most precious resources. Look at where EcoCash started and how reluctant people were at first, nowadays millions of people use the platform. That is the power of these digital platforms and the convenience they bring,” he said.