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Jenny Pather is Executive Head: Trading Bridge at Vodacom Financial Services, a position she has held since November, 2019.  In this role, she manages a team responsible for the end-to-end design and delivery of customer rich propositions that solve real world problems in the supply chain, FMCG and trading community. 

Jenny joined Vodacom in 2011 and, prior to her current position in VFS, was Executive Head: IoT Solutions and before that, Senior Manager: Enterprise Cloud Systems at the company.

After graduating with a BSc (Honours) in Computer Science from the University of KwaZulu-Natal, Jenny built a career in the technology environment at several major companies, including Deloitte, PPC Cement and the Spar Group.  She had many focus areas in those companies, primarily in systems development and platform management to enable digitisation

She summarises her skills as follows, “With experience in technology spanning various vertical industries including telecommunication, retail, consulting and manufacturing, I specialise in enabling digital transformation strategies. I am passionate about solving for a customer pain point and bringing the customer experience to the forefront of any digital propositions that we create. ”

jenny pather

Jenny’s department’s overall focus now is to enable the various stakeholders in the supply chain ecosystem with data rich solutions and capabilities. She says, “We create end-to-end solutions with the objective of enabling business-building specifically for the small merchant and supplier”

Trading Bridge is a solution whereby orders can be processed from placement to delivery to payment.  We aim to bring small businesses such as Spaza shops into the mix by linking them to a chain that includes major manufacturers and big retailers.  Our platforms simplify the trading process and brings visibility in the supply chain.  Previously marginalised businesses can now be included because even micro payments and lending is now accessible to them for them to grow their business.”

Currently, the scale of the VFS trading operation is vast, with more than 84 million transactions, valued at over R200-billion, being processed annually.

Jenny adds, “The COVID pandemic has accelerated the digitisation of business at every level as people have forced to live and work more remotely. Aside from it highlighting the need for visibility across the supply chain,  it has also underlined the need for us to help in the development of small business where we can bring financial inclusion and enable them to participate in this new digital economy.”

She talks enthusiastically about the role she now occupies.  “I focus my energies on innovation and my team and I consider ourselves out-of-the-box thinkers and problem solvers.  I am passionate about technology and enjoy working in in an energetic organizational environment.  We do some incredibly innovative stuff like building rich customer experiences that incorporates deep data insights and automation such as robotics for real-world problems.”

Jenny is also deeply involved in empowering women in the workplace.  “Vodacom is an innovative company, and it’s an exciting place to be, especially for young women who love technology.  Where I like to assist smart and ambitious young women to achieve their potential.”

Outside of work, Jenny has been married 20 years and has a 17 year-old son.  She exercises her creative skills through photography and also practises yoga.  “I believe it’s very important to have balance in your world and yoga does that for me,” she concludes.

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