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Vox Telecom’s 100% Growth Model

Vox Telecom’s CEO Jacques du Toit has his sights set on expansion driven by sales and acquisitions.

Monique Verduyn

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Jacques-du-Toit

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  • Player: Jacques du Toit
  • Company: Vox Telecom
  • Position: CEO
  • Contact: +27 (0)87 805 0000
  • Visit: www.voxtelecom.co.za

To double the size of the business in five years — that’s the high-level strategy that Jacques du Toit is driving at ICT company Vox Telecom.

The company delisted from the JSE’s AltX in 2011, following a R500 million buyout by shareholders. After talk of selling the business was halted mid-2014, the shareholders gave the go-ahead for the growth strategy, based on the company’s performance over the previous five years.

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“Achieving 20% growth per year should be an expectation for almost any enterprise,” says du Toit.

“But when the business is facing massive deflation it’s a different story. We are looking at 13% deflation on our core voice and data products every year going forward.

“We will only see growth by outselling that deflation, and outselling the inflation of our operational expenses. I am confident we will achieve that because we are successfully diversifying into new ICT product streams that Vox Telecom has never played in. We are selling more than ever to an expanding market.”

Product diversification

Aggressive acquisition has given the company more than 150 products aimed at consumers, SMEs and large enterprises, as well as the people to get them into the market.

Without that expanded product base it would have been senseless to commit to the growth du Toit says, but the company’s growth trajectory has placed it in a position to service a broad market.

Plus, its ambitious strategy has the support of the board and investors.

Trust at the core of strategy

To ensure that the whole organisation ‘lives’ the company’s vision and strategy, du Toit says trust is critical.

“Trust is the foundation of the survival and success of any company. Without trust there can be no sustainable business.”

He and the management team have built a network of positive relationships with employees over time, giving them faith that the organisation is moving in the right direction.

“The leadership team has been with Vox Telecom for more than 15 years, and our people believe that we have set the company on the right strategic course,” he says. “They also know that if we need to tweak it or change direction, it will be for the right reasons.”

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Core values are fundamental

Du Toit stresses that strategy can only be implemented and executed when the entire organisation shares the same core values.

“Core values are the guiding principles that dictate behaviour and action. When you have an organisation of more than 900 people, embracing and understanding the core values is essential to the success of
the strategy.”

When people have different views of what is important to the business, he adds, disaster ensues.

“You can have the smartest mission and vision statements, and you can excite people about your objectives, but if you do not all subscribe to a common set of core values informing how you deliver your services to customers, you will fail.”

Open channels of communication

Du Toit says that because the business environment is changeable, it’s vital to ensure that everyone knows what the end goals are.

“We know where we are heading, but we may have to make a detour every so often. To ensure that our people always know what is going on, we have taken practical steps that make it easier to execute the strategy.”

These include breaking the business up into smaller divisions, each headed by a member of the executive team. He maintains that it is much easier to ensure execution of strategy because each unit is agile and the team knows exactly what they are responsible for.

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“Big teams are slow, lose focus and find it difficult to prioritise because there is too much white noise in the background,” he says.

Monique Verduyn is a freelance writer. She has more than 12 years’ experience in writing for the corporate, SME, IT and entertainment sectors, and has interviewed many of South Africa’s most prominent business leaders and thinkers. Find her on Google+.

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25 Of The Most Successful Business Ideas In South Africa

Find out who’s making waves in numerous industries and how they managed to differentiate themselves in local and international industries.

Nicole Crampton

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“Disruption is all about risk-taking, trusting your intuition, and rejecting the way things are supposed to be. Disruption goes way beyond advertising, it forces you to think about where you want your brand to go and how to get there,” says Richard Branson.

South Africa has its fair share of innovative and disruptive businesses taking both local and international industries by storm. From cutting edge space technology to reimagined logistics, and innovative business models, here are 25 of the most successful business ideas in South Africa:

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Colin Timmis Says ‘Position Yourself For Success By Starting With The Numbers’

People pay first who they feel pressure from, so people will pay you when they feel pressure from you.

CEOwise

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Entrepreneur Colin Timmis founded South Africa’s first cloud accounting practice in 2011, Real Time Accounting. Then, a few years after being appointed as South Africa’s first Xero partner Colin became Xero Country Manager South Africa. Xero is the emerging global leader of online accounting software that connects small businesses to their advisors and other services.

Related: Pat Pillai On How He’s Helped Over 5000 Entrepreneurs Using 3 Key Steps

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Two 20 Year Olds Reshape Entrepreneur Landscape With New Social Investment Platform

The Merge vision is to become the ‘go to’, digital meeting place for entrepreneurs and investors, and to truly make a difference in the world.

Merge Connect

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It’s no secret that finding the right investor for your venture is a challenge that most entrepreneurs face. The current process of finding investment is one that is outdated, and limits entrepreneurs due to a lack of time, and network that is needed to find the right investor. But, this doesn’t have to be the case in today’s digital society, says Zander Matthee and Brandon Bate, co-founders of Merge.

“By making the Internet the middleman, we are able to connect with each other much simpler and faster than before” was Zander’s response. “We have taken advantage of this, and have created a digital meeting place for entrepreneurs and investors” added Brandon.

Merge is a social platform that connects entrepreneurs and investors. It aims to simplify, refine and accelerate the process of finding investment for entrepreneurs, and the process of finding investment opportunities for investors. From idea to developed, the platform allows entrepreneurs to present a brief outline of their venture to a network of all investor types. While doing this, entrepreneurs are able to browse through, and connect with investor profiles that suit their requirements.

Related: 8 Codes Of Success That Helped Priven Reddy of Kagiso Interactive Media Achieve A Networth Of Over R4 Billion

From Private Investors to Venture Capital, and everything in between, Merge allows all investor types to join. Investors have the opportunity to personalise their feed to suit their investment preferences, and will be able to connect with innovative businesses – that are looking for investment – at their fingertips. Only once there is a mutual interest in each other, are users able to enter a secure private chat where they can discuss further and share documents under the protection of a digital NDA.

The two boys became good friends during their time in high school at St Stithians Boys College. However, it was only in their last year, 2016, that they decided to pursue their dreams and create the platform. They didn’t know how to code, so rather ironically, they needed some form of investment to get the platform off the ground.

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“We knew we had a mountain to climb, but we believed in our vision and that we were really trying to make a difference, and if we could get others to see that, they would be onboard.” said Zander.

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Chris Peters is one of these individuals that bought into their vision, and became Merge’s first investor. As a successful entrepreneur and part time investor , Chris saw how much value the platform could bring to all entrepreneurs and investors alike. His marketing and strategic background gave him insight into how Merge could play a vital role in a lucrative space, Brand involvement.

“Entrepreneurship and SME development are two key factors that drive economic growth in developing countries like South Africa. That is why brands are currently getting involved, and looking to support entrepreneurs through various means. We have built a platform that allows these brands to successfully market, and execute on the programmes they have created to assist entrepreneurs.” said Chris

Merge was created to assist all entrepreneurs and investors in finding exactly what they are looking for, regardless of age, race, sex, financial position or social status. That is why anybody can sign-up as an entrepreneur. As long as you are determined and willing to work for your dreams. For too long has the investor space been seen as an “elite club for the select few”, and Merge is here to change that. Whether you’ve gotten your bonus at the end of the year and looking for new investment opportunities, or are an active investor, you can sign-up. Whether you’re currently working, or a retired industry leader, you can join as a mentor.

Their vision is to become the ‘go to’, digital meeting place for entrepreneurs and investors, and to truly make a difference in the world.

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