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Telviva appoints ICT industry veteran Antony Russell as CTO

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Antony Russell, chief technology officer of Telviva.
Antony Russell, chief technology officer of Telviva.

Cloud-based business communications solutions firm Telviva (formerly Connection Telecom) has appointed technology industry veteran Antony Russell as its chief technology officer (CTO).

In a statement, the company says Russell will be instrumental in the management and continued development of its product portfolio, serving local and international markets.

“Modern businesses face a huge challenge in dealing with the plethora of communications channels that are available out there,” Russell says.

“Taking a unified communications approach is hugely beneficial for business as it brings synchronicity between voice, video and chat. Combining this with additional context from backend systems means businesses can provide their customers with contextual, seamless and personalised engagements.”

The company notes that as CTO, Russell will be in charge of overseeing the following teams: the Core Team, which is responsible for the infrastructure used to run the Telviva network, as well as the data centres running the company’s software solutions; the Development Team, which has been crucial in the design, development and deployment of the firm’s business communications solutions; and the Professional Services team, which serves large private and public sector customers with requirements for modern, omni-channel contact centre solutions.

An entrepreneur, business leader and expert IT specialist, Russell has extensive experience in the industry, including in hardware and software sales and distribution, security, PBX systems, IT and business consultancy, proactive monitoring of customer IT infrastructure, the provision of managed services, and the design, development and deployment of contact centre solutions to the local market, says Telviva.

It adds that he is one of the few Digium Certified Asterisk Professionals in South Africa.

In 2001, Russell co-founded Clarotech, an IT infrastructure company that specialised in providing consulting, support and procurement services to small and large companies in SA.

Telviva notes that as technical director, he was influential in seeing the organisation expand beyond its traditional offering and into the provision of Internet service provider solutions, private cloud services, telephony and contact centre solutions to local customers.

Clarotech was acquired by Logicalis in 2019, and Russell continued to be involved in multiple roles, including providing high-level technical guidance for international teams, and heading different areas within the firm. His last role here was as practice manager for unified communications.

Russell joined Telviva in June 2021 to replace previous CTO and co-founder Steve Davies, who sadly passed away earlier this year, the company notes.

He is also a member of the South African Flying Team and earned his National Colours in Flying for representing SA in the World Air Navigation Race in Portugal in 2019.

Russell says he is looking forward to representing SA at the World Rally Flying Championships to be held in Stellenbosch in November.

In addition, he developed a booking system – Book-A-Flight – which is targeted at the South African flight training industry.

“We are excited that Tony decided to join the team. He brings with him a wealth of expertise and experience that will enable us to continue to operate a world-class service and pursue our international aspirations,” says David Meintjes, CEO of Telviva.

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