Zoom steps up South African presence

Pandemic-era investor darling Zoom Video Communications is stepping up is presence in South Africa, expanding the headcount of its local office and appointing First Distribution as a partner in a major channel sales push.

Zoom will announce later on Wednesday that it “officially launching its entry in the channel in South Africa” with the First Distribution deal, which will give the company access to thousands of channel resellers and partners, said Dion Smith, head of channels for Zoom in Europe the Middle East and Africa (Emea), in an interview with TechCentral.

Until now, Zoom has worked through TechSonic in South Africa, but the First Distribution deal marks a big expansion of its local presence. It plans to appoint additional distributors in the coming months, too.

Zoom has stepped up hiring in South Africa, and its local office now has a team of nine people, including account managers, business development specialists and solutions architects. The local team is backed up by specialists across the Emea region. Though the company has a direct sales team – mainly for pitching to and working with large enterprises – all its sales are done through the channel, Smith said.

The company is also launching Zoom Up, its global partner programme, in South Africa on Wednesday. Companies that want to offer Zoom solutions can apply to become “Enrolled”, “Sales” or “Performance” partners – and they can move through the tiers by achieving certain requirements.

Zoom, whose share price soared on the back of the Covid-19 pandemic, has seen its valuation sag in recent months as lockdowns have eased around the world and as investors fret over the company’s future earnings growth as people return to work. From a peak of about US$480, the Nasdaq-listed firm’s shares have sunk to about $100.

Despite this, Smith said growth in the unified communications market is expected to continue unabated over the next five years as companies continue to rely on these tools. Hybrid work – from the office, the home or elsewhere – will be the norm in a post-Covid world, he said.  – © 2022 NewsCentral Media

Source: techcentral.co.za