In the second leg of its CIO Africa Round Table tour, an infrastructure software leader Symantec consulted with chief information officers across all industry sectors in Nairobi, Kenya, this week.

The aim of the Round Table, which began in Nigeria towards the end of July and is taking place across Africa, is to examine the role of standardisation and optimisation in improving IT availability and performance.
“Symantec's State of the Data Centre Report, conducted in April 2007, found an increase in data centre complexity,” says Patrick Evans, regional director for Africa at Symantec. “This is particularly true in the data-intensive environments common to telecommunications and financial services.
“Businesses in these sectors can decrease data centre and IT infrastructure complexity by standardising their software and optimising their IT infrastructure. This ensures the availability of information while securing sensitive data and providing business continuity. These are critical factors for those companies wishing to manage organisational risk effectively and comply with corporate governance best practices.”
According to Evans, business leaders in the financial services sector are recognising the value of IT solutions that focus not only on antivirus and intrusion detection and prevention software, but also risk management and the standardisation and optimisation of infrastructure.
“Currently there is an increasing awareness within the Kenya financial market that the ability to compete for business is becoming more closely related to the bank’s ability to provide additional electronic services,” he says.
“There is therefore an increasing need by banks to provide secure and highly available services. For this reason Symantec has met with IT leaders to explore these challenges and assist financial institutions in becoming more competitive in terms of increasing efficiency and the ability to become more profitable.”