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Monday, April 12, 2010

Alvarion appoints Winston Smith, MD

Leading provider of Forth Generation (4G) WiMAX and wireless broadband solutions, Alvarion has appointed Mr. Winston Smith to head its South African office, which covers the entire continent of Africa.

Mr. Smith, officials said, takes over from Rick Rogers as the managing director of Alvarion South Africa in April, 2010.

Smith, an ICT veteran, has been in the employ of Internet service provider, MWEB, for the last three years, where he most recently served as the manager, Wireless Deployment & Operations.

Prior to that, Smith had worked at Sentech for over three years, Infosat Communications for a year, and Telkom for 15 years.

Speaking on his latest appointment, Smith said, “Alvarion is one of the top three wireless broadband access manufacturers worldwide and, as a WiMAX player, has managed to increase its market share during a period of global economic turbulence.”

According to him, as an operator, hitherto, has long been a customer of Alvarion and has had the opportunity to test and deploy a number of products within the Alvarion portfolio.

As a familiar customer impressed with experiences, Smith noted that when the offer of country manager was made to him, “he didn’t hesitate to accept the challenge.”

Smith equally indicated that his goals are to succeed in opening new markets for Alvarion in the SADC region and Nigeria, and helping it gain a stronger foothold in its existing customer base.

“I hope to ensure that the channels to market are not only successful in marketing the Alvarion product, but that they excited about working with the brand. Naturally, I also intend to grow Alvarion’s market share; and to enjoy myself in the process,” he adds.

WiMAX in South Africa is really at its infancy and with 10 per cent Internet penetration in South Africa, and a mere 3 per cent of that being broadband, according to research firm World Wide Worid’s Internet Access in South Africa 2010 study, this offers an opportunity for very rapid growth, especially with the recent deployment of the Seacom undersea cable and its associated reduction in bandwidth costs, maintains Smith.

“Alvarion has an excellent team in its South African office, which is the reason why the company has maintained its position as the choice WiMAX and wireless broadband access vendor in the SADC region. I am confident that, as a team, together with Alvarion’s strong local partners, we will be able to assist operators and enterprises in SADC to maximise the benefits that wireless broadband can provide them,” he said.

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