TCS+ | Louise Steenekamp: what to look forward to at Saphila 2023

The African SAP User Group (AFSUG) is a community-driven, non-profit organisation independent of SAP that represent the interests of SAP customers and partners in Africa. It does this by providing a platform to share stories, best practices and insights related to their experiences with SAP technology, assisting SAP users to address their key challenges in the African context.

Africa trails other regions in terms of digital adoption and maturity. There are many reasons for this, including poor internet infrastructure and coverage, lack of trust in digital service providers, and a lack of digital and general technology skills. African companies must also overcome a myriad internal factors that contribute to low digital maturity, including cultural resistance to adopting digital tools, a lack of organisational agility required to adopt digital tools effectively, and underdeveloped technology capabilities.

Despite these wide digital gaps and other challenges, there is clearly a desire to catch up to the rest of the world, and digital adoption and the associated infrastructure buildouts are occurring faster in Africa than in other regions.

Saphila 2023

Saphila, meaning “Alive”, is AFSUG’s world-class biennial African conference, hosted in collaboration with SAP, and is making its post-pandemic comeback from 9-11 July 2023 at the Sun City resort in South Africa’s North West province. This year’s Saphila conference will also be the first-ever hybrid Saphila event, further extending the agenda to delegates who may not be able to travel to or within South Africa.

Saphila 2023 is an opportunity for attendees, both in-person and those attending virtually, to connect, create and collaborate through knowledge sharing about innovations, implementation and service delivery best practices while being exposed to local customer testimonials and panel discussions covering eight different content streams – from platform & tech, transformation and human experience management to the future, next-gen services and more.

Several world-class keynote speakers and top industry experts have been lined up to speak at the event, promising to deliver a content-rich learning experience. Additionally, the conference promises to deliver an all-encompassing immersive environment through providing access to exhibition spaces packed with SAP partners showcasing their solutions on implementing projects faster, better and within a cost-effective budget, as well as new product showcases and demonstrations presented by SAP and SAP partners.

While virtual attendees may not be able to visit the physical partner exhibition, they will still be able to enjoy access to the Saphila 2023 virtual expo centre, which includes online booths for all exhibitors. They will also have the opportunity to participate in interactive sessions and live surveys.

In this episode of TechCentral’s TCS+ show, Louise Steenekamp, head of IT at Aspen Pharmacare — speaking in her capacity as a board member of the African SAP User Group – unpacks what to expect at the upcoming Saphila 2023 event.

The Saphila 2023 agenda is now live and can be accessed by visiting For more information and assistance with general event information and bookings, please send a message to