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Israel's Tikal Sees Africa Ready for VoIP Growth

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April 08, 2011

Israel's Tikal Sees Africa Ready for VoIP Growth

By Ed Silverstein, TMCnet Contributor

Tikal Network, an Israeli-based VoIP provider, says it wants to focus on Africa for growth opportunities, according to news reports.

A recent story from Reuters notes that while many Israeli technology firms see the United States, Europe and Asia as lucrative markets, Tikal sees potential in Africa because of it smaller telecom infrastructure.

"Africa is virgin land," Alexander Argov, Tikal’s founder and CEO, said during an interview with Reuters (News - Alert). "They are adapting fast to new technologies and that is why we want to be there.”

Tikal has agreements in place with Zambia's main railway and Mozambique’s banks. Last year, Israeli financial newspaper Globes reported how Tikal would install a new PBX (News - Alert) telephone switchboard at Zambia Railways. Tikal is using its Crystal Clear 2 IP PBX and appropriate software, Globes reported in a story carried by TMCnet. The system also has security measures to prevent calls from being stolen.

"You need to go abroad, especially in our market," Argov told Reuters.

Tikal provides VoIP systems and call centers to companies. Its competitors are such companies as: Cisco, Avaya and Panasonic (News - Alert), Reuters said. Currently, about 80 percent of its business comes from Israel, Reuters adds. The company’s largest customer is the Israeli military.

The privately-held company has yearly sales of about $2 million, Reuters said. Their annual sales are expected to be $5 million within a few years, Reuters said. That is due to the lower cost of calls made through the Internet.

The company also wants to increase the number of its call centers, Reuters said. It now has some 50 located in Israel and in Ukraine.

In 2015, the company may have an IPO, Reuters said.

According to information posted on the company’s website, Tikal Networks was founded by “experts in Command and Control communication systems.”

Tikal Networks says it has integrated its Asterisk (News - Alert)-based technology “into leading worldwide telephone and communication components manufacturers in the VoIP market.”

Ed Silverstein is a TMCnet contributor. To read more of his articles, please visit his columnist page.

Edited by Janice McDuffee

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