Obsidian rolls out Zimbra for 20,000 users at Tanzanian ISP, Dovetel

Thu, 2010/03/11

Obsidian rolls out Zimbra for 20,000 users at Tanzanian ISP, Dovetel

Obsidian Systems has rolled out the Zimbra open source messaging and collaboration suite for 20,000 end-users at Dovetel, a Tanzanian Internet service provider and mobile operator that trades under the Sasatel brand.

The deal is Obsidian’s biggest Zimbra installation outside South Africa and marks the company’s entrance into a new African market. Obsidian Systems is active in a number of African territories, but Tanzania is the farthest north it has ventured into sub Saharan Africa to date.

Says Edson Mdanguzi, ISP Manager at Sasatel: “We selected the Zimbra platform to underpin Sasatel’s email solution, Sasamail, and provide email services to our business customers and consumers based on the affordability, scalability and reliability of the solution. The fact that Zimbra has an excellent track record as an email platform in the ISP space also counted in its favour.”

Since email is such an important communications tool for its customers, Dovetel needs a platform that offers high levels of reliability and availability, says Mdanguzi.

Their business customers in particular cannot tolerate downtime as a lack of email could cost them both time and money.

The Zimbra platform is robust enough to provide enterprise-class email services and is scalable enough to grow alongside Dovetel ‘s needs, Mdanguzi adds. Sasamail business clients can depend on this service for all their email requirements rather than needing to install and manage their own email servers.

“Obsidian Systems was an ideal partner for the implementation of the Zimbra solution at Dovetel because of the highly skilled technical resources it could offer us, as well as its extensive experience in the open-source and ISP markets,” Mdanguzi says.

Zimbra brings together calendaring, e-mail, instant messaging, and other tools, combining them in an online platform. It provides an Ajax, Web-based interface that can be accessed from anywhere via a Web browser. Zimbra also integrates with a variety of desktop clients, including Outlook, Thunderbird, and Apple Mail.

Says Muggie van Staden, managing director at Obsidian Systems: “We’re seeing strong interest in open-source software throughout Africa, with growing demand for our skills and expertise across the continent.

“Zimbra and Linux are just two examples of open-source platforms that African customers are embracing for their reliability, affordability and ease of customisation. We are well placed to help customers such as Dovetel realise the benefits of open-source software.”

Obsidian Systems was appointed as a Zimbra value-added reseller in 2007. It has since won a number of deals to roll out Zimbra-based solutions at companies in South Africa and other parts of the continent.

About Obsidian
Obsidian, provider of Enterprise Open Source in Southern Africa, offers open source and related technology services, including training, consulting, products and solutions. Since starting in 1995 Obsidian has grown to become the premier OSS solutions provider. Visit www.obsidian.co.za for more info.