Cisco cuts its global headcount by 5%

February 16, 2024
6 min read
Cisco building; Source: Cisco

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Γεια σας,

Victoria from Techpoint,

Here's what I've got for you today: 

  • Cisco cuts its global headcount by 5%
  • Jumia's 2023 figures paint grim picture
  • Uganda to roll out secure IDs
  • Supporting Telecom Namibia's digital journey 

Cisco cuts its global headcount by 5%

Cisco building; Source: Cisco

American tech giant Cisco is letting go of 5% of its global workforce, meaning thousands will soon be polishing their resumes.

Why? The company is keen on diving headfirst into high-growth areas like artificial intelligence and software.

Cisco is known for producing a wide range of networking hardware, including routers, switches, firewalls, and Wi-Fi devices. It’s everywhere, in 92 countries and over 3,000 communities worldwide.

It also has a strong presence in Africa, with 23 countries, including Nigeria, Kenya, Egypt, Algeria, South Africa, Ethiopia, Angola, and Tunisia.

Cisco appears to be struggling with old-school switches and routers recently, as people cleared out excess stock during the pandemic frenzy. It has had to revise its revenue projections for the year, set at $51.5 billion to $52.5 billion, a decrease from the initial forecast.

The choppy chop chop on jobs is expected to hit hardest in the third quarter of fiscal 2024, so keep an eye out for pink slips flying around then.

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CEO Chuck Robbins reckons the company is aligning itas investments with the future, saying, “Our innovation sits at the centre of an increasingly connected ecosystem and will play a critical role as our customers adopt AI and secure their organisations.”With nearly 85,000 employees, Cisco faces a $800 million bill for severance and other costs.

But, it is counting on the AI boom and software to turn things around. After all, as it states, "The combination of these two innovative leaders makes them well positioned to lead in security and observability in the age of AI."

 Jumia's 2023 figures paint grim picture 

Jumia delivery
Source: Jumia Group website

Jumia's CEO, Francis Dufay, dropped some truth bombs in his latest chat with shareholders. He admitted that the past year was no walk in the park for tech and retail outfits across Africa.

The numbers paint a bleak picture: orders nosedived by 22%, from 27.5 million in 2022 to a mere 21.3 million in 2023. Gross merchandise value also fell 19.6%, from $932 million to $749.8 million.

Revenue followed suit, plummeting 8.3% from $203.3 million to $186.6 million, with gross profit sinking 9.4% from $182.2 million to $107 million.

But Dufay is not all doom and gloom. He believes Jumia finished the year stronger, with a smaller loss before tax of $98.6 million compared to $206.2 million in 2022.

Yes, there were painful impacts. Jumia Food got the chop in Nigeria, Kenya, Morocco, Ivory Coast, Tunisia, Uganda, and Algeria. And it’s tightened the belt on marketing spend.

Dufay, who stepped into the CEO role after Jeremy Hodara and Sacha Poignonnec made a swift exit, is optimistic about the future. He's betting on a leaner, meaner Jumia in 2024, focusing on slimming down teams and slashing ad spend.

The plan? Get cosy with local sellers and big brands to sort out supply issues and keep prices steady. Because while African customers are eager, they require a reliable source, which is where Jumia wants to step in.

 Uganda to roll out secure IDs

Digital IDs

Uganda's National Identification and Registration Authority (NIRA) is prepping for a massive enrolment drive starting June 1st, 2024, aiming to sort out the IDs of almost 30 million Ugandans.

The Authority is rolling out new cards with top-notch security features, like iris biometrics and an ultraviolet element to make them harder to fake, and they'll be valid for a decade.

Who's eligible to sign up or renew? Anyone who has never had an ID or obtained one in 2014 or 2015 that will soon expire.

Signing up or renewing won't cost you a penny. And if you're in a rush, you can pay a bit extra, Shs50,000, to get your card within 48 hours.

NIRA's planning to set up mobile enrolment spots all over the place to make it easy for everyone to get sorted.

But hold up; there's a snag. Some MPs are fretting over possible delays because NIRA hasn't sorted out funds for hiring staff or getting the necessary systems in place. Plus, they're questioning the need to renew IDs every ten years and griping about how slow the process can be for some folks to get their hands on an ID.

Bottom line? This mass enrolment drive is Uganda's chance to beef up its ID system and make life easier for its citizens. Organising funding, training staff, and ensuring everyone has access to the process will be critical to its success. However, with some collaboration, these new IDs could result in smoother transactions and better service for all Ugandans.

Supporting Telecom Namibia's digital journey

Telecom Namibia

Qvantel, a Finnish digital business support system (BSS) company, has clinched a deal with the SATEC Group, a Spanish multinational, to provide Telecom Namibia with its Qvantel Flex BSS solution.

Quick one: The Flex BSS is a cloud-native platform for Communication Service Providers (CSPs) that supports digital, 5G, and convergent services.

So, this partnership will turbocharge Namibia's digital journey, ensuring nobody gets left behind.

Telecom Namibia aims to usher the country into the digital age by keeping everyone connected. The national telco plans to combine fixed broadband and local wireless access to provide customers with improved Internet connectivity.

Calling the shots on this expedition is SATEC Group, teaming up with Qvantel to roll out the Flex BSS system across the board for Telecom Namibia's mobile, fixed, and deluxe services, catering to both regular folks and business honchos.

Dr Stanley Shanapinda, CEO of Telecom Namibia, says streamlining operations on a single platform means the telco can introduce new services and expand its market share.

Telecom Namibia is preparing for a complete digital makeover. The telecoms company is poised for significant growth if they get all their ducks in a row and roll out several digital products and services for consumers and businesses.

In case you missed it

What I'm reading and watching


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  • Application for the Innovest Afrika accelerator programme is open. Apply by February 14, 2024, here.
  • Kenyan startups focused on embedded finance, future fintech, SME productivity tools, and content like local gaming and mobile advertising can apply for Safaricom’s Spark Accelerator programme. For more information, check this out.
  • The International Center for Journalists (ICFJ) is looking for an editor to support the Arthur F. Burns Fellowship. Apply here.
  • Application for the Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology (MEST) Class of 2025 is now open. Check out the one-year, fully sponsored, graduate-level programme in tech entrepreneurship here before March 18, 2023.
  • Do you live in Nigeria and work with a local or foreign company? Whether it's remotely, on-site, hybrid, full-time, part-time or as a freelancer, @TheIntelpoint is trying to understand the Nigerian workspace: how you work, and toxicity in the workspace among others. Please, fill out the questionnaire here.
  • Explore this website to find multiple job opportunities in Data that align with your preferences.
  • If you are a software engineer, creative designer, product manager, design researcher, or a techie looking for an internship role, please, check out this website.

Have a fun weekend!

Victoria Fakiya for Techpoint Africa.

She's autistic and interested in mental health and how technology can help Africans with mental disorders. Find her on Twitter @latoria_ria.
She's autistic and interested in mental health and how technology can help Africans with mental disorders. Find her on Twitter @latoria_ria.
She's autistic and interested in mental health and how technology can help Africans with mental disorders. Find her on Twitter @latoria_ria.

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