Business Talk – In conversation with Muggie van Staden

Muggie van Staden is the managing director and chief executive officer of Obsidian Systems, an open source solutions company that he has helmed for 21 years.

Leveraging the Linux open source way as a driving force, van Staden has embedded a culture of innovation, relevance, dedication and collaboration in this niche IT service provider. As an engineer, van Staden’s inherent nature is to solve problems in unique and effective ways.

He says that Obsidian is the name that has become synonymous with providing peace of mind when it comes to open solutions, putting the needs of customers first and building future-facing technology solutions together.

“Obsidian Systems has a culture of dynamic innovation coupled with a strong tendency towards trying new things (among many other attributes), and not to be afraid to make mistakes. This, and taking full accountability and responsibility for actions is encouraged.

“Our people are encouraged to learn and grow themselves to their full potential as managers, innovators, problem solvers, and citizens of South Africa.”

Obsidian Systems, along with its subsidiaries GuruHut, Autumn Leaf, and RadixTrie, is an established supplier of enterprise-ready open source software solutions.

“We focus on providing the South African market with vendor-certified products; local expertise to provide consulting, development, and support; and vendor-certified training. We help teams to get their code to the best compute and the correct data,” says van Staden.

Obsidian Systems is continually leading the charge in open source with the likes of Linux and Hadoop, he says. With Covid-19 highlighting the importance of digital transformation, it has created the opportunity for an innovative company such as Obsidian Systems to compete globally in the open source market.

In this episode of Business Talk with Michael Avery, van Staden talks through how businesses, including Obsidian Systems have adapted in South Africa off the back of Covid-19.

He talks about a new way of operating post lockdown, and how in a state of economic uncertainty many look to open source, where they may not have before. The economy of it becomes appealing, he says.

He highlights some of the trends around what is essentially free software, and the open ‘source code’ for businesses to thrive in the future.

The full interview is embedded below. You can find all the Business Talk with Michael Avery interviews here.


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Business Talk – In conversation with Muggie van Staden