Not long after Dimension Data was founded in South Africa four decades ago, the company became an award-winning IT giant. We listed on the JSE in 1987, expanding further into Africa, the Middle East and further abroad before joining the NTT Group in 2010.

Now, more than 10 years down the line, we’re ready to swap the iconic Dimension Data green for NTT DATA blue when we rebrand in April 2024.

The rebranding won’t come as a surprise to our clients, because we’ve already been doing business as both NTT and Dimension Data for some time. If anything, we believe they’ll welcome this announcement, as it will confirm that they are in a partnership with a globally relevant, recognized and respected technology provider – and here’s why.

Our transition from green to blue

When several businesses within the NTT Group were united under the NTT Ltd. banner in 2020, we kept the Dimension Data brand to represent the group in the Middle East and Africa market.

However, we’ve always been a core part of NTT Ltd. – now known as NTT DATA – and our clients have enjoyed access to Dimension Data’s solutions and services alongside NTT innovations such as platform-delivered services.

So, this rebranding is both a continuation of what we've built and the start of even greater things to come. It’s a step change in our market positioning and allows us to become everything that’s expected from a global brand while remaining loyal to our local clients.

We’ll retain our heritage and experience, and we’ll continue to deliver with the speed and agility that our clients have come to appreciate – only now we’re doing so under a global banner. That’s what really excites me, because with the name comes even more access to the bigger world of NTT DATA solutions and services.

From systems integration to mainframe modernization

One example of this change is that we’re now talking to clients about mainframe modernization linked to an NTT DATA offer called UniKix – and I think it’s safe to say that our clients would not have associated Dimension Data with mainframes!

But now, bolstered by the capabilities and skills of NTT DATA, we can help clients with mainframe modernization and moving to cloud infrastructure.

NTT DATA’s digital assets are valuable additions to our portfolio, but the value flows both ways: Dimension Data’s intellectual property and top South African talent – ideated and developed in Africa – is now going to the rest of the world. For instance, our PhaseCONVERT framework helps clients plan migrations from SAP ECC to SAP S/4HANA, which is a major undertaking.

Watch: we asked our colleagues how they were feeling about the rebranding

The next generation of managed services

Being part of NTT DATA also gives us access to standardized technologies that now form the cornerstone of our managed services. With powerful, platform-delivered and AI-enabled services at our disposal, we can now more efficiently deliver managed solutions that are aligned with best practices.

Then there’s our innovative Sentient Platform for Network Transformation (SPEKTRA) which, underpinned by our managed services expertise and technical resources, gives organizations a direct route to network transformation. It generates alerts about network issues and uses AI to recommend ways of resolving these issues before they become real problems.

Using SPEKTRA, we’ve reduced incidents by a massive 87% for some of our large South African clients. Leveraging AI is the future, and we are using it as a foundation for all of our managed services.

Industry-focused teams taking our services to a new level

Beyond access to advanced technologies and innovation, the rebrand also increases our capacity to understand – and develop solutions for – industry-specific challenges.

NTT DATA has a wealth of industry-specific experience and intellectual property that we can leverage in order to be more relevant to our clients. For example, we’ve already introduced the NTT DATA financial services team to a number of our banking CIOs, which enabled us to expand the conversation from networks and the cloud to include core banking applications.

Across our region, we’re setting up industry-specific teams for retail, financial services and manufacturing, and in the Middle East we’re also looking at industries like oil and gas and aviation. I believe it’s these developments that will take us from being perceived as a system integrator to a service partner with capabilities that match those of the world’s top global consulting firms.

Investing in local skills and developing local talent

NTT Group has always recognized that the group’s businesses outside Japan operate in unique markets and need skilled people in these markets, close to our clients. Capacitating our local teams is therefore an ongoing focus area, and we’ll continue to develop roles in the Middle East and Africa and recruit people from local markets.

NTT DATA sees Africa as a talent hub, so we’ll be growing our workforce across the region to ensure our clients get the full benefits of our global expertise and local skills.

The rebranding is therefore good news for our employees, too, as they’ll be gaining access to a range of new skills as well as valuable opportunities to grow as professionals. This investment in our people also makes us an employer of choice in the region, allowing us to attract top talent.

Our bold strategy for growth and investment

Our focus as a leadership team remains on developing the Middle East and Africa business, one of four NTT DATA regions around the world, and we’ve embarked on a bold new growth and investment strategy to match the global NTT DATA technology portfolio.

We are extremely positive about where we’re going next. There is so much opportunity to go further, do more, make a bigger difference. But at the same time, I am not alone in feeling a degree of nostalgia and even sadness when I think about leaving the Dimension Data brand behind.

Many of our employees, alumni, clients and partners have contacted me and spoken about the company with real passion. To me, that’s a good thing, as it means we have really made an impact. We have built something great, something we can continue to build on as we start this new chapter.

When I joined Dimension Data almost 25 years ago, I found an organization of entrepreneurs where everyone could be their best. I would not be here today if that culture didn’t exist in the organization, and it’s something that I will always take forward.

We want people to join us and excel at what they do. And what better time than now?