3Com Corporation today announced that the South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) has chosen a distributed network of H3C and 3Com-branded solutions to run its vast social security grant system across the country.

The government agency manages monthly payouts to 13-million people, mainly in remote rural areas, totalling approximately R50-billion annually.
The $12-million deal is for the implementation of a national network for 600 branch offices around the country during the next three years.
The scalable, robust network is being built around H3C MSR multi-service routers and 3Com core and edge Ethernet switches. IP telephony between the branch offices is provided by a 3Com VCX IP communications solution. The network is being built to support 15 000 users, and implementation is planned to be completed by the end of 2011.
Maintaining its commitment to customer service, 3Com will provide a dedicated on-site network engineer at SASSA’s offices for the next three years to ensure that the rollout proceeds smoothly. Direct links with local and international 3Com service and support resources ensure rapid problem solving and access to the latest technology.
SASSA’s executive manager: IT, Luvuyo Keyise, says: “SASSA selected 3Com as the preferred networking supplier because we are convinced that the technology is robust enough for our unique requirements. We also wanted to commit to a company that has the ability to grow with us. We have built a relationship with 3Com and believe the company has the right skills, products and commitment to adding value. This gives us confidence that its solution will sustain our nationwide networking strategy.”
3Com Africa’s regional sales director Derek Wiggill says that the SASSA assignment will be a showcase for 3Com’s technology, value and skills in the region.
“In this economic climate, when government faces reduced tax revenues to spend on building infrastructure, it is vital that it gets top value from suppliers. This deal clearly illustrates the client’s flight to value.”
In addition, says Wiggill, “Implementing a network that delivers crucial support to disadvantaged people is critical to government. There is very little room for technology that cannot withstand the rigours of operating in rugged areas where infrastructure and skills are under constant pressure. This is why our remote maintenance solutions are key.”