Joining us at 021Disrupt 2020, the CEO & President of Engro Corporation, Ghias Khan gave a thrilling talk about how we, as a nation, can contribute to building a connected future, and how it all has to be rooted in reducing the digital divide so that we can all thrive together.
Pakistan is currently one of the very few countries that has a 70% population that does not have internet access. We’re also ranked pretty low in terms of broadband access. Clearly, there are infrastructure gaps that need to be built, but there is also minimal buying power in the country, as well as an overall lack of digital literacy.
What sort of impact can this have on us as a community?
For one, there is the looming risk that over 50 million of our student population will fall behind their global peers. Nearly 100 million of our adult population currently remains un-banked, and while these issues have existed for a long time, the emergence of a global pandemic really magnified them and brought them to the forefront.
Whenever Engro Corporation enters a new business line, their key question is to ask themselves how the new business will contribute towards the important issues our society is facing. Having recently stepped into connectivity as a vertical, Ghias and Engro Corp. both believe that reducing the digital divide in our country is imperative.
Engro Enfrashare is a new vertical that is based on tower sharing. They work with MNO’s and provide them with shared networks of their tower infrastructure. Tower sharing can do so much for optimizing connectivity and infrastructure. It’ll help MNO’s immensely to do more for coverage, solve for capacity issues, and much more.
Engro’s venture capital firm, Engro Infinity, was a startup that has recently been moved under Engro Corp. as its own vertical. They’re looking to work with companies and startups that can help add value to their current verticals, which are petrochemicals, food and agriculture, and energy and infrastructure.
How can tech companies impact these traditional modes of businesses? Considering the fact that there are fundamental changes heading towards all of these verticals, pushing for liberalizing the market and market-based reforms, it’s not hard to imagine how competitive they will all become in the very near future.
Conglomerates like Engro Corp. will need to compete on a regional as well as global scale, and cost-competitiveness is going to be at the core of this. This is where technology steps in.
Engro Corp. had a head start towards digitalization. They began a company-wide digitalization process nearly 2 years ago, which allowed for somewhat smoother sailing come Covid-19 and working from home. However, their purpose with digitalization was not just to increase productivity, but also to cultivate a better customer and employee experience for their business. As an organization, they believe that if you’re able to attract and nurture the right talent, the sky’s the limit.
Technology, for them, is the answer to all the challenges our country currently faces. Going digital allowed them to radically change their mindset towards how they measure employee productivity, how they reward their employees as well as the senseless need for large office headquarters and spaces.
For a full version of the amazing talk, click here.