Daily Archives: June 7, 2018

Syntonic announces international launch of the Freeway Roaming Service™ for mobile carriers

New service enables operators to accelerate growth in international roaming ARPUs by participating in the US$676 billion generated by online travel services

SEATTLE, June 06, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Syntonic, a mobile platform and services provider, today announced the commercial launch of its international Freeway Roaming Service for mobile carriers.

Syntonic’s Freeway Roaming Service enables mobile carriers to capture new revenue streams from their international roaming subscribers by participating in the US$676 billion generated by online travel transactions.

The Freeway Roaming Service is a white-labeled service that can be branded by mobile carriers and offers data-free access to travel services paid for by app affiliation fees and transaction commissions from consumer purchases. The service enables travel app providers to capture lost transactional opportunities from travelers who turn off their expensive cellular data connection when roaming internationally.

Additionally, the Freeway Roaming Service provides a convenient way for travelers to purchase data roaming packages and micro-data plans to premium apps to further enhance carrier international roaming ARPU.

With the Freeway Roaming Service, international travelers no longer need to turn-off mobile data, wait for uncertain Wi-Fi access, or inconveniently purchase a local SIM. This always-connected international subscriber translates into additional carrier ARPU through participation in the app economy.

The first deployment of the Freeway Roaming Service is with Smart Communications, which will provide their 57.7 million subscribers, when travelling abroad, with sponsored access to mobile apps and content through the RoamFree by Smart® international traveler application, available in the App Store and Google Play Store. The upcoming version of RoamFree, powered by the Freeway technology platform, provides Smart’s international travelers with data-free access to essential and popular travel services such as Agoda, AirBnB, Grab, Uber, Klook, TripAdvisor, ATM Finder, Google Maps, and Groupon.

“This partnership and roaming service rollout with Smart represents an important milestone and the first announced deployment of our Freeway Roaming Service,” said Syntonic founder and CEO Gary Greenbaum. “Along with the revenue-advancing benefits, our technology platform enables mobile carriers to add more value for subscribers, reduce customer churn, and better monetize their roaming services.”

Alice Ramos, Vice President of International Roaming for Smart Communications, commented, “We are proud to be working with Syntonic that shares our zeal in delivering enriching travel experiences for our subscribers.”

“Smart customers already enjoy roaming plans that are simple, easy and affordable, with the power to track usage in real time,” she added. “Now, RoamFree democratizes roaming while allowing Smart to enhance in-trip experiences. With Syntonic, we are expanding our services from roaming access to travel content, further and faster than before.”

For more information, please contact info@syntonic.com.

About Syntonic 
Syntonic Ltd (SYT.ASX) is a Seattle based software company which has developed two mobile technology services: Freeway by Syntonic®, which allows consumers unlimited mobile access to content and applications, supported by paid subscription and sponsorship; and Syntonic DataFlex®, which enables businesses to manage split billing expenses for employees when they use their personal mobile phones for work. Founded in 2013, Syntonic has developed worldwide strategic partnerships with leaders in the mobile ecosystem.

For media enquiries, please contact:

Paul Lonnegren
Pulse8 PR
(720) 470-7488

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/a2baf39d-196c-41ad-ab3b-5d3e36876084

Costs of Ministerial Homes Renovations under Scrutiny

Parliament- The Standing Committee on Public Accounts (Scopa) has instructed the Director-General of the Department of Public Works, Mr Sam Vukela, to submit a detailed report on costs incurred by the department as a result of deviations and contract expansions during renovations of ministerial houses.

During a meeting with the department to discuss deviations and expansions in the public sector Scopa Chairperson Mr Themba Godi said the report must also include total costs of extras such as braai areas in the ministerial homes.

The Director-General was also ordered to investigate the circumstances around the employment of department Chief Financial Officer Mr Cox Mokgoro.

Members of Scopa wanted clarity on the employment of Mr Mokgoro as well as the contracting of his company, Honey Cloud Enterprises, to the Department of Public Works after a Treasury report raised questions about the process followed.

Source: Parliament of the Republic of South Africa

Brand South Africa hosts talks with EU investors

Brand South Africa has concluded a meaningful consultation session with the European Union investor community based in South Africa, which will see the country’s marketing and reputation management agency deepen its collaboration and partnership with the EU investment community.

Dr Petrus de Kock, General Manager for Research at Brand South Africa said: The consultation session was focused on gathering deeper insights into the experience of business from the EU based in South Africa.

We will now refine our strategy to promote South Africa as an investment destination of choice whilst also communicating our findings with the various government departments that work and interact with the EU community in South Africa.

Brand South Africa shared the findings from its International Investor Perceptions Research with EU business stakeholders that was released at the end of last year.

The research showed that the perception and reputation of South Africa fell amongst EU nations in recent years. However, large numbers of diverse investors from the European Union are active in the South African market.

EU nations represent an important trading partner and source of foreign direct investment for South Africa. The EU has historically been South Africa’s main trading partner and the biggest source of foreign direct investment (FDI).

Firms from EU Member States represent over 75% of the nation’s total FDI stock.

Linda Sangaret, Chief Marketing Officer at Brand South Africa said: We listened to their concerns and challenges and affirmed that the EU remains an important trading partner to South Africa.

What was encouraging and positive was that they expressed their desire for further collaboration and deepening of partnerships to promote South Africa in their country markets.

Donnee Kruger, member of the Board of Trustees of the EU Chamber of Commerce and Industry in South Africa said: The EU investor community in South Africa represents 2,000 companies with over 850,000 employees currently.

Profits of these companies increased 5% year-on-year within the last year, so it shows that these companies are an active and important part of the South African business landscape.

Kruger also presented at the consultation a Business Climate Survey which included findings from research conducted by the EU Chamber of Commerce & Industry in South Africa.

The report indicated that 68% of European investors stated that they use South Africa as a base for their operations and trade relations in Africa.

In the context of shifting and uncertain geopolitical and global economic dynamics, Brand South Africa is hosting consultation sessions with its global trade partners in South Africa to strengthen ties that promote South Africa’s investor attractiveness and enhance its position as an investment destination of choice on the African continent. Inputs gathered from stakeholders will be utilised in planning for the Investment Summit announced by President Ramaphosa during the State Of The Nation Address 2018.

Brand South Africa looks forward to gathering input from current investors to assess the competitive/comparative advantages the market offers to multinationals, as well as to gather insight into perceived and real challenges to doing business in South Africa.

Source: Government of South Africa

Land Reform Isn’t Threat, S. Africa’s Ramaphosa Tells White Afrikaners

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa told the white Afrikaner community on Thursday that it should not view his government’s land reform plans as a threat, but as a way to harness the country’s economic potential and heal divisions from the past.

Ramaphosa, who replaced scandal-plagued Jacob Zuma in February, has promised to redistribute land to the black majority to address the deep racial inequality that persists more than two decades after the end of apartheid.

He has been at pains to dispel fears among some white South Africans that they could face violent land seizures if the government’s land reform program is bungled.

Tonight I want to say to all of you: Let us not see the issue of land as a reason to pack up and go, Ramaphosa told a gathering of the Afrikanerbond, an organisation founded 100 years ago to defend the interests of the descendants of mainly Dutch settlers.

It is an opportunity to build a more just and equitable society that makes full and effective use of the resources we have, Ramaphosa said, peppering his speech with phrases in Afrikaans, Afrikaners’ mother tongue.

Ramaphosa has embarked on a charm offensive ahead of next year’s national election as he seeks to restore confidence in the ruling African National Congress (ANC) and kick-start economic growth after a decade marred by corruption and mismanagement.

The ANC has faced criticism that its land policies could erode property rights and deter investment, even though privately owned land is not expected to be expropriated until after the election.

Ramaphosa, who played a key role in the negotiations that led to the end of white minority rule in 1994, on Thursday urged Afrikaners to approach land reform in the same spirit as the transition to democracy.

You are Africans, and we must accept that, he said, ending his speech to applause from the crowd. Afrikaners are as integral to the South African nation as any other community that we have.

Source: Voice of America


PRETORIA– South African Environmental Affairs Minister Edna Molewa has congratulated the members of the investigating team who spearheaded the arrest of two people in Gauteng Province for allegedly dealing in rhino horn.

The investigating team comprises officers from the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigations, better known as the Hawks, the Environmental Management Inspectorate and South African National Parks (SANParks).

The Minister said the arrest and conviction of those suspected of rhino poaching and associated activities sends a strong message that this crime will not be tolerated.

Mandla Mashele, 37, and Kelvin Malapane, 38, have been charged with illegally buying rhino horn in contravention of the National Environmental Management: Biodiversity Act (NEMBA). They handed themselves over to the Benoni police last week following a raid on a premises in Daveyton in Gauteng in May.

The men appeared in court on May 30, 2018 and were granted bail of 50,000 Rand (about 3,900 US dollars) each. The case has been postponed to July 13, 2018 for further investigation.

This two-year investigation resulted in the team being able to identify the criminal supply chain and receivers of rhino horn in Gauteng, a prime example of the winning formula of the Integrated Strategic Management Approach Cabinet adopted in 2014, Molewa said.

The implementation plan for the Integrated Strategic Management Approach lays the foundations for the department’s anti-rhino poaching efforts; bolstered by the South African Police Service (SAPS) Draft National Integrated Strategy to Combat Wildlife Trafficking.

The number of rhino poached in South Africa has been on a steady decline, largely the result of the success of this approach.