May 19, 2020

MTN Reveals Better than Expected Job Cuts Numbers in South Africa

South Africa
africa technology
Africa telecoms
job cuts
Skills Junction
1 min
MTN Switches SA Focus towards Data

MTN Group has announced its plans to lay off around half of its 850 managers in South Africa; a number that is actually considerably below the number of job cuts predicted by union officials

Original projections by South Africa’s Solidarity Union, which largely represents skilled workers, suggested that the continent’s largest telecoms company would be looking ti cut closer to 850 managerial jobs as a consequence of its recent dip in the market.

For years, the company has held the title of industry leader, due to its incomparable saturation in the key economies of South Africa and Nigeria, but it would seem that market competition in the former has diminished the company’s stronghold.

South Africa is seen as a gateway to Africa, especially for international companies moving into continental markets, and it is here where MTN has been hit hardest, with the company’s revenue failing seven percent in the first half of 2014, while margins also declined.

MTN South Africa’s market share dropped by almost three percentage points to 31.9 percent as a result of the growing number of market rivals, both locally and internationally.

All of this indicates that the reduction in job losses against forecasts is actually a positive sign for MTN, whose subscriber numbers also continue to increase despite the competitive market.

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Jun 14, 2021

5 minutes with... Janthana Kaenprakhamroy, CEO, Tapoly

Kate Birch
3 min
Heading up Europe’s first on-demand insurance platform for the gig economy, Janthana Kaenprakhamroy is winning awards and leading with diversity

Founder and CEO of award-winning insurtech firm Tapoly, Janthana Kaenprakhamroy heads up Europe’s first on-demand insurance platform for the gig economy, winning industry awards, innovating in the digital insurance space, and leading with inclusivity.

Here, Business Chief talks to Janthana about her leadership style and skills. 

What do you do, in a nutshell?

I’m founder and CEO of Tapoly, a digital MGA providing a full stack of commercial lines insurance specifically for SMEs and freelancers, as well as a SaaS solution to connect insurers with their distribution partners. We build bespoke, end-to-end platforms encompassing the whole customer journey, but can also integrate our APIs within existing systems. We were proud to win Insurance Provider of the Year at the British Small Business Awards 2018 and receive silver in the Insurtech category at the Efma & Accenture Innovation in Insurance Awards 2019.

How would you describe your leadership style?

I try to be as inclusive a leader as possible. I’m committed to creating space for everyone to shine. Many of the roles at Tapoly are performed by women and I speak at industry events to encourage more people to get involved in insurance/insurtech. Similarly, I always try to maintain a growth mindset. I think it’s important to retain values to support learning and development, like reliability, working hard and punctuality.

What’s the best leadership advice you’ve received?

Build your network and seek advice. As a leader, you need smart people around you to help you grow your business. It’s not about personally being the best, but being able to find resources and get help where needed.

How do you see leadership changing in a COVID world?

I think the pandemic has proven the importance of inclusive leadership so that everyone feels supported and valued. It’s also shown the importance of being flexible as a leader. We’ve had to remain adaptable to continue delivering high levels of customer service. This flexibility has also been important when supporting employees as everyone has had individual pressures to deal with during this time. Leaders should continue to embed this flexibility within their organisations moving forward.

They say ‘from every crisis comes opportunity’, what opportunities do you see?

The past year has been challenging, but it has also proven the importance of digital transformation in insurance. When working from home was required, it was much harder for insurers to adjust who had not embedded technology within their operating processes because they did not have data stored in the cloud and it caused communication delays with concerned customers at a time when this communication should have been a priority, which ultimately impacts the level of customer satisfaction. This demonstrates the importance of what we are trying to achieve at Tapoly in driving digitalisation in insurance and making communication between insurers and distribution partners seamless. 

What advice would you give to your younger self just starting out in the industry?

Start sooner, don’t be afraid to take (calculated) risks and make sure you raise enough money to get you through the initial seed stage.


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