Cisco's World-Wide VP for Service Provider Marketing embarks upon Pan African Tour as CEO commits $10 million to support ICT Strategies in Africa
Cisco VP engages with African Business and government leaders to build out the IT infrastructure to position economies, businesses and jobs for the future.

Kigali, Rwanda, Monday 1st October 2007 - Jeff Spagnola, Cisco's ®, World-wide Vice President for Service Providers Marketing commences a Pan African tour on Monday 1st October 2007. The tour is one of the first initiatives undertaken in Africa following Cisco's announcement of its commitment to fund $10 million to support Information and Communications Technology (ICT) strategies in Africa.

As part of the tour, Mr. Spagnola will be meeting government ministers and senior representatives of the African IT public sector as well as CEOs of Service Providers in Rwanda, Kenya, Ethiopia, Gabon, Nigeria ,South Africa and Namibia.

On the 28th September 2007, Cisco announced that it was committing $10 million to support ICT strategies in Africa. In the first year of this multiphase commitment, Cisco will provide US$1.75 million, followed by an additional US$8.25 million over the next three years to target Nigeria, Rwanda, Ethiopia, Cameroon, and Kenya. Funding will support Information and Communications Technology (ICT) strategies designed to enable basic human needs, access to education, and economic opportunity.

With 16 years tenure at Cisco Systems, Jeff Spagnola has led Cisco's Worldwide Service Provider Marketing organization as Vice President since October 2004, where he is responsible for the marketing of Cisco's solutions and technologies to service providers worldwide. As a leader of Cisco's Service Provider Business Council, Mr. Spagnola participates in the development and execution of Cisco's Service Provider strategy. In addition to his marketing role, Jeff is responsible for the acceleration of advanced technologies through the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) and other key standards bodies. He is a regular speaker at both industry conferences and standards forums and is a spokesperson for Cisco's service provider strategy.

During his Pan-African tour, Mr. Spagnola will focus on reiterating Cisco's strategy for the African region he also aims to:

  • Elaborate to CEOs/Chairmen of key operators the value in being strategic in leading their country's country transformation initiatives, and reiterate Cisco's commitment to this
  • Address unique requirements of operators regarding co-branding and research and development on new features;
  • Strengthen Cisco's position in the various accounts to facilitate becoming the leading supplier in networking thus transforming how people connect, communicate and collaborate.

As part of his agenda, Mr. Spagnola will:

  • Keynote speech at the Kigali ITU Forum - "Bridging the ICT standardization and development gap between developed and developing countries" hosted by Rwanda's Minister of Infrastructure of Rwanda, Hon Mr Butare (2-4 October 2007).
  • Meet with leaders of leading telecom service providers including TelKom, Kenya and South Africa; Telecom Namibia; Gabon Telecom; MTN Nigeria and South Africa, NITEL and CELTEL in Nigeria

Emerging Markets -and especially Africa- are a strategic focal point for Cisco.
These markets require a different approach, adapted to the local needs, the objective being to support the economic development of these countries through an optimal use of new technologies, thus in combination with the New Millennium Objectives

In Sub Saharan Africa, Cisco has offices in Nigeria, Kenya, Cameroon, South Africa and is about to open an office in Senegal, Angola and Mauritius.

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