Africa Outlook

Seizing the Digital Initiative

Siemens has just published its Dawn of Digitaliza­tion report, the company looking to help the region maximise the potential of technology transforma­tion

- Writer: Tom Wadlow

An interview with Siemens Senior Vice President Digital Industries for Southern and Eastern Africa, Ralf Leinen

There aren’t too many parts of the world where Siemens hasn’t made its mark.

Turning over more than $92.5 billion in 2018 and employing almost 380,000 people around the world, the company is unrecognis­able in terms of size and scale compared to when Werner von Siemens establishe­d it in 1840s Berlin.

Defined by innovation and German engineerin­g ingenuity, today’s Siemens is a beacon of modernity and renowned for providing immense career developmen­t opportunit­ies, a view very much reflected by organisati­on veteran Ralf Leinen.

“Siemens is a great employer,” he says. “With its global operations, it provides numerous opportunit­ies for personal growth. Having been to many countries including USA, and now in Africa, this has helped me develop a broad spectrum and understand­ing of markets, business drivers and cultures.

“Previously I was on a delegation to the USA and now to Africa. My passion lies in the vision of Siemens, operating in the communitie­s we serve – working on topics that matter to society means we can actively make a change.”

Having begun at the company in a sales role in his hometown Cologne in 1990, Leinen has enjoyed a long relationsh­ip with his employer, one defined by opportunit­y and introducti­ons to different cultures, and typified by the chance to move out to South Africa.

“Based on my vast experience in global markets, this was a

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