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STRATEGY

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MUCH ACTION IN STORE PUBLISHED BY Business Media International REGISTERED OFFICE: Office 10, Sharjah Media City www.bmi-digital.com EDITOR IN CHIEF Raman Narayan narayan@bmimea.com Mob: 971-55-7802403 SALES DIRECTOR Ankit Shukla ankit@bmimea.com Tel: 971-4-2618885, Mob: 971-552572807 EDITORS Diksha Vohra editor@smartsmb.net Tel: 971-4-2618885, Mob: 971-506395616 Baraka Jefwa baraka@bmimea.com Tel: 971-4-2618885 CIRCULATION MANAGER Bhawana Bhatia bhawana@smartsmb.net Tel: 971-4-2618885 SALES R. Subramanyan subu@bmimea.com Tel: 971-4-2618885 FINANCE Akhilesh Pandey akhilesh@bmimea.com Tel: 971-4-2618885

2019 has been eventful so far on several fronts for the UAE. Hazza Al Mansoori becoming the first Emirati astronaut to undertake a spaceflight and the first Arab astronaut to the International Space Station, ISS, marks the beginning of soaring space ambitions. Likewise, the UAE has been been following a clear strategic roadmap in many areas of development and technology adoption ranks right at the top of the list. Within the UAE, the multiple initiatives from Smart Dubai Office in partnership with government and private sector entities are setting new directions and some of these include, the Dubai Data Initiative, the Dubai Blockchain Strategy, the Happiness Agenda, the Dubai AI Roadmap and the Dubai Paperless Strategy. Again this backdrop, the UAE continues to encourage technology companies that have bleeding edge solutions on several fronts to come in and develop the market further. IT has transformed radically over the past several years and the transformation journey continues to gather speed. The availability of newer cloud data centers in the region from leading public cloud providers will be a key factor in driving adoption of cloud based infrastructure across verticals. With adoption of more cloud based IT, digital transformation will gather further impetus because of the remarkable scalability that cloud offers. GITEX 2019 will yet again be the theatre where we should see some riveting glimpses of what technology of the future is likely to be as has been over the past several years. There are many new entrants among exhibitors as companies that have new technologies to offer take centre stage at the show. And beyond the technologies on show , the 5 day exhibition will offer numerous opportunities to create new business partnerships and enhance some existing ones.

R. Narayan Editor in Chief, Smart SMB

Management Chairman S.N. Tiwari

CEO Saumyadeep Halder

sn.tiwari@bmimea.com

saumyadeep@bmimea.com

Publisher Raman Narayan

Managing Director Ankit Shukla

narayan@bmimea.com

ankit@bmimea.com

Disclaimer: While every effort has been made to validate the accuracy of all information included in the magazine, the publishers wouldn’t be liable for any errors therein Copyright@2019 Business Media International LLC. All rights reserved.

October 2019 / SMARTSMB


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CONTENT

CONTENTS cover story

spotlight RECOGNITION FOR TRAILBLAZERS

THE PURSUIT OF TRANSFORMATION

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22

gitex Talkpoint Security at the forefront

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A holistic approach

18

Enabling Secured Access

20

A growing stature

26

Securing identity Management

30

Technology for human empowerment 16

manufacturing Made in the UAE

strategy

ENHANCING THE TRANSITION TO CLOUD

Increasing revenues in a challenging market

46

advertising

spotlight

Changing the way we communicate

A confluence of the mid-market’s best

SMARTSMB / October 2019

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32

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column Data Availability: the Digital Foundation for a More Intelligent Business

48

Networking challenges SMBs face

49


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NEWS

HUAWEI MIDDLE EAST INNOVATION DAY 2019 TO TAKE PLACE ON SIDELINES OF GITEX 2019 Government, Telecom and enterprise technology pioneers to gather to discuss 5G expansion, AI innovation, and supporting local ICT developers

Huawei, a leading global provider of information and communications technology (ICT) infrastructure and smart devices, has announced that the fourth Huawei Middle East Innovation Day will be held during GITEX Technology Week 2019, on October 7. The event will see ICT experts from government, telecom and enterprise sectors gather to discuss key industry topics – including Artificial Intelligence (AI), 5G, ecosystem development, and more. The event will include three bespoke sessions: a 5G Ecosystem Conference under the title “5G, Gear Up”; an AI Conference under the theme “Advance Intelligence”, and a “Huawei Developer Day Dubai 2019” session, which is focused on building a better ecosystem for Huawei’s local partners and developers. Innovation Day comes at a time when both the public and private sectors are making critical investments in ICT infrastructure. Digital innovation is now at the forefront of many national development plans in the Middle East, and is seen as a crucial ingredient to diversifying local economies, creating future jobs, while accelerating sustainable development. Huawei Mobile Services will share the newest ecological construction strategy and will showcase common SMARTSMB / October 2019

vision of the future, including optimized app/gaming experience, top quality content discovery, AI-powered tools, and much more. Huawei Developer Day Dubai 2019 ultimately aims to help build the bridge between the best content and global users. Charles Yang, President of Huawei Middle East, said: “Huawei Innovation Day is an opportunity for representatives from across the ICT sector to come together and discuss the future of the industry. High-level discussion is essential in the development of solutions and ecosystems that support the continued progression of our societies as we build a fully connected, intelligent world. AI will have a pivotal role to play in the years to come. Huawei will continue to sharpen the competitive edge of its products and solutions by leveraging the power of AI to deliver tangible impacts for clients.” Visitors to GITEX Technology Week can explore Huawei’s latest solutions and global case studies at its exhibition stand located at Stand Z2-A10 in Za’abeel Hall 2 under the theme ‘Building a Fully Connected, Intelligent World’. Huawei’s participation at GITEX 2019 is supported by some of its key partners including GAPP and Redington as Diamond sponsors; Enterprise Systems and Octalpha as Gold sponsors.

SCTDA to launch new smart services during GITEX 2019 participation Authority to highlight impact of digital conversions in hospitality & tourism industry at the event The Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development Authority (SCTDA) announced that it will participate at GITEX Technology Week 2019, which will take place from October 6-10 at Dubai World Trade Centre, under the umbrella of the Sharjah Government. Underscoring its commitment to harnessing the power of technology in its efforts to promote Sharjah’s tourism sector, SCTDA will launch new innovative services at the Sharjah Pavilion of the event. SCTDA’s participation in GITEX 2019 is set to draw attention to the ongoing digital transformation in the hospitality and tourism industry. With the increased connectivity of devices, the industry is taking advantage of big data to enhance customer experience. Keeping pace with the rapid technological advancements, SCTDA has developed a wide range of solutions to serve tourists, travel and tourism establishments and other stakeholders in the emirate, with an aim to meet the objectives of the Sharjah Tourism Vision 2021. Commenting on SCTDA’s GITEX participation, H. E Khalid Jasim Al Midfa, Chairman of SCTDA, said: “The role of artificial intelligence within the busi-


NEWS

ness world has grown dramatically over the past decade and as a result, recent years have witnessed widespread adoption of AI applications by the travel and tourism industry as well. Thanks to the increased connectivity of devices, the Internet of Things (IoT) is also making its impact felt in the tourism and hospitality industry. We, at SCTDA, remain committed to harnessing the power of technological advancements in accelerating our efforts to meet customer expectations and position Sharjah as one of the leading global tourism destinations.” “We consider GITEX an ideal platform to inform the public about our innovative smart services that have been designed to complement the UAE Smart Government goals to help customers save time and effort and to contribute to sustainable development process. The smart services developed by the Authority form part of the objectives of the Sharjah Tourism Vision 2021, adopting an innovative approach to tourism as a key pillar of the Vision. SCTDA remains keen to offer more smart services and solutions that enable comprehensive information and facilities to visitors, thereby presenting them with enjoyable, hassle-free tourism experiences.”

FINESSE COLLABORATES WITH MEDCARE HOSPITALS & MEDICAL CENTRES TO ENABLE DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION Finesse endeavors to build a robust digital platform for Medcare’s business processes.

Finesse, one of the leaders in digital transformation, announced its strategic partnership with Medcare, a premium healthcare network ventured by Aster DM Healthcare. Finesse in association with its partner - UiPath, a renowned Robotic Process Automation (RPA) software company, has proposed a customized solution for better customer experience and value generation at Medcare Hospitals & Medical Centres. The partnership between Finesse and UiPath will offer a seamless implementation experience. Finesse endeavors to build a robust digital platform for Medcare’s business processes. It has proposed an automation platform to make the insurance eligibility process quick and accurate for both Medcare and its existing patients.

H. E Khalid Jasim Al Midfa Chairman, SCTDA

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“As an organization committed to deliver the most personalized service and best clinical outcomes, we understand the value of time. In our mission to reduce waiting time and constantly improve upon evidence-based care, RPA will automate and streamline several tasks for our medical professionals and administrators in hospitals and clinics. With regards to insurance approval, RPA implementation will support our team deliver an even higher level of service, with their time on paperwork reduced thanks to automation. We can use insights delivered by

the tools to access and process data to deliver the best clinical outcomes and service excellence for our patients,” said Andre Daoud, Chief Executive Officer at Medcare Hospitals and Medical Centres. “We are delighted to provide Medcare Hospitals & Medical Centres with the best-in-class RPA solution to enhance its journey of digital transformation. We will ensure a secure, and feasible RPA platform for upscale customer handling and relationship management. This transformation is surely going to simplify the insurance eligibility process for Medcare’s employees as well as their existing patients,” said Sunil Paul, Co-Founder & COO, Finesse. Naushad Mohammed, General Manager IT at Medicare said, “It is a time-consuming process for the employees and strains the patients to wait for insurance approval before commencement of their treatment. That’s why we have decided to automate the process to lead efficiency, and to effectively carry out the eligibility process.” “We believe that the automation solutions provided by UiPath and implemented by Finesse will allow Medcare to create a highly scalable digital workforce to support their transformation agenda,” said Karan Dixit, Vice President, Middle East and Africa at UiPath


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NEWS

Al Rostamani Communications Freshworks, helps fortify data protection Redington Gulf strategy for GEMS Education partner to bring GEMS Education has one of the largest endpoint footprints of about 22,000 systems protected by McAfee ENS anism which manages, controls, monitors and meters the data effectively. GEMS Education has implemented multiple information security initiatives to enhance its end user awareness through simulation exercise, posters, screen savers and trainings

Al Rostamani Communications LLC (ARC), a leading ICT solutions provider and systems integrator has partnered with GEMS Education, one of the world’s oldest and largest K-12 private education providers. Al Rostamani Communications has designed and successfully deployed McAfee System Security solution to over 50 plus schools remotely which are centrally managed from their Head Office. GEMS Education has one of the largest endpoint footprints of about 22,000 systems protected by McAfee ENS in the region. The complete solution offering will drive GEMS Education to reap foreseeable benefits such as regulatory, data protection and reducing inherent technology risks & exposure to internal and external threats. ARC has been working with GEMS for many years and are proud to partner with them by providing email & cloud security solutions. Partnering with ARC, GEMS Education system is secured with robust mechSMARTSMB / October 2019

Youssef Fawaz, General Manager, Al Rostamani Communications said, “We are glad to announce that we have one of the prestigious project on board from GEMS to expand their current Endpoint Security to “Data Protection Strategy” with solutions such as, CASB - Cloud Access Security Broker, DLP – Data Loss Prevention & Email Security. By deploying CASB & DLP technology, GEMS mechanism will be more vigilant in protecting data whilst ensuring that the right people have the right access to the right data at the right time with full visibility & compliance”. Shabeer Mohammed, Vice PresidentGroup Head- Technology Services, GEMS Education said, “Al Rostamani Communications LLC (ARC) ‘s right solution, competitive offering and implementation strategy is a welcome message for us. Our partnership with ARC will ensure that none of our data is leaked and goes in the wrong hands. Since spill out of data is not restricted to emails but also to end point devices- laptop, desktop”. Vivek Gupta, Vice President - Head of Information Security, GEMS Education said, “Al Rostamani Communications LLC (ARC) brings in a rich expertise in diverse technology and caters to our combination of multiple suit of products. With Al Rostamani Communications coming on board with us, we aim to secure our data more effectively and maintain it for a long-term lifecycle and error free”.

customer engagement products to MEA

Freshworks, Redington Gulf partner to bring customer engagement products to MEA Redington Gulf FZE, a leading Value Added Distributor and Service Provider in the Middle East and Africa (MEA), has announced signing distribution agreement with San Mateo-based Freshworks , the customer engagement software company. The partnership will enable digital transformation for companies of all sizes in the MEA (including South Africa) market. Freshworks is at the forefront of customer engagement. The company offers a 360-degree suite of products which enable digital transformation for enterprises of all sizes. As a distributor in the region, Redington Gulf will offer user-friendly business solutions provided by Freshworks including cloudbased customer support, IT service management solution, CRM and call center software for enterprises of all sizes. Anand Venkatraman, VP of Global Partnerships at Freshworks, said, “We are excited to partner with Redington Gulf. They are the largest, and most respected distribution partner in the region and we look forward to exploring the huge mutual opportunity as companies look for a powerfully simple customer engagement software. Redington’s teams, which include experts in implementing cloud software solutions, coupled with their strong reseller network will bolster our existing


NEWS

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Technological disruption, a priority for nearly 70% of UAE CEOs in 2019, says KPMG report 74% are piloting AI and automating processes in their business Sayantan Dev SVP, Redington Value portfolio and enrich our offerings. This will further cement our commitment to regional customers.” With an extensive network of over 6000 resellers in MEA, Redington Gulf is committed to transforming customer experiences in the Middle East and Africa and bring world class products by Freshworks in the region. Sayantan Dev, SVP at Redington Value, said “Businesses in the MEA are undergoing rapid growth and transformation, we’re seeing increasing interest from companies to deploy software solutions to improve and automate their support & sales functions. Freshworks’ products are apt to fulfill the needs of the industry. The company’s design philosophy of delivering simple-to-use products and customer centric pricing models makes it a preferred choice for businesses. This partnership will enable us to expand the current offerings in our portfolio with a competitive software solution to win the market.” Redington Gulf will pursue opportunities to offer the multi-product customer engagement suite, implement sales growth by cross-selling and introduce potential businesses to Freshworks’ user friendly software. In addition to driving sales, the company will provide dedicated onboarding and customer support to clients of all sizes.

Almost 70% of UAE CEOs are actively disrupting their sectors in 2019 by making significant technological advances, from AI to cognitive computing, to grow their business and stay ahead of competition. This is according to the fifth edition of KPMG’s CEO Outlook report, which shows that disruptive technology, economic territorialism and climate change are some of the biggest challenges global and local businesses may be facing today. Despite 94% of both UAE and global CEOs expressing confidence in their own business’ growth prospects, fewer (63%) feel the same way about the global economy. Age-old businesses appear to have come under increasing threat due to digital disruption, and CEOs are under pressure to rethink their organization’s traditional approach to drive new digital revenue streams. Sixty three percent of UAE CEOs believe that agility is fundamental for businesses to succeed against a challenging economic backdrop. Eight out of ten UAE CEOs are actively transforming their leadership teams to build resilience and three-quarters of organizations are piloting artificial intelligence (AI) and automating processes. In the wake of increased technological disruption and adoption, over half (57%) of CEOs recognize that a strong cyber strategy is critical to building trust with key stakeholders. Nader Haffar, Chairman & CEO KPMG Lower Gulf, said: “This year’s KPMG CEO Outlook report shows that UAE CEOs are championing a digital reinvention, while navigating other big issues like economic territorialism and climate change. To weather the challenges

Nader Haffar Chairman & CEO, KPMG Lower Gulf that lie ahead, they may have to fundamentally transform their operating models and build an agile, customer-focused and connected enterprise with a strong workforce at the helm.” Many global and local organizations have recognized that climate change presents one of the biggest challenges today – and CEOs are turning their attention to energy transition to move the world away from a reliance on fossil fuels. In fact, half of UAE CEOs say their organization’s growth will depend on their ability to navigate the shift to a low-carbon, clean-technology economy. Overall, 66% of UAE CEOs said their first priority for geographical expansion over the next three years is emerging markets. October 2019 / SMARTSMB


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NEWS

DCG CONFERENCE HIGHLIGHTS THE NEED TO BE FUTUREPROOF The event was latest in a series of initiatives by DCG for its members Dubai Computer Group (DCG) organized a conference at the at Le-Meridian Hotel attended by a large number of its members under the theme ‘futureproof your Business’ to enhance awareness of businesses on how to adapt to the future. This was part of the ongoing efforts from DCG to encourage its member organizations to transform their organizations and address the challenges that technology and market disruption is unfolding, which is key to growing the business. Vasudevan Kidambi from consulting and business transformation solution provider Navo Management delivered an elaborate presentation on the topic . His presentation highlighted how businesses must respond to the multiple developments that constantly reshape the business ecosystem. Dharmendra Sawlani, President of DCG said, “The Technology Shift and Market Decentralization are the realities that we face today and moving on we need to adopt a Business Model that will fit the new world order. In past DCG has

organized many events bringing in motivational speakers, skill development programs, specialist and consulting advisors from various fields. Moving forward, we are convinced it is time to look inward and move from motivation to direction and turn Disruptions into Opportunities.” “It is not about what developments we see around; it is about the way we see it. Similarly, it is about the way we do business that needs a deep introspection and modernization. There must be clarity on ‘how to’ respond to the developments, remain future proofed and grow,” said Vasudevan

Kidambi, Managing Director of Navo and Business transformation leader. Suchit Kumar, General Secretary of DCG said that “disruptive innovation has alerted the business ecosystem and we need to radically shake up the way we think to keep our business Future Proofed. We are endeavoring to help our members businesses be fit for future and shall have follow up events like skill developments and business clinics.” ASBIS ME was the Support partner and Lexmark, the Co Sponsor for the event. The event included a live Band entertainment and opportunities for business networking.

$/&$7(/˨/8&(17(17(535,6(3$571(56:,7+ SECURENET TO ENHANCE THEIR SMB OFFERING Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise, a leading provider of communications and infrastructure solutions has signed a partnership with SecureNet, a value-added distribution company supporting the channels by bringing innovative and niche technologies in the field of Cyber Security, IP Surveillance and Networking & Communications.

ration products and services to help small, medium and large enterprises connect for greater efficiency, scalability and innovation. SecureNet will help streamline the Go-To-Market of ALE, expanding the UAE reach to support end customers and help accelerate focus towards Verticals, Cloud and Services of ALE in the next few years.

SecureNet will offer the entire suite of Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise high end Data networking, Wi-Fi, Enterprise Voice Communication and Collabo-

“The partnership with Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise adds crucial capabilities to our networking offer that will allow us to better fill our customers’ needs by

SMARTSMB / October 2019

providing a more complete solution” said Melwin Dsouza, CEO at SecureNet. “We welcome SecureNet to the Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise family and recognize their importance in our distribution network. The relationship is expanding our reach to small and medium size customers and strengthening our eco system in the UAE. We look forward to work closely with SecureNet to address an evolving business communications market” said Rohit Menon, Channel Sales Manager at ALE.


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TALKPOINT

SECURITY AT THE FOREFRONT Binoy Koonammavu, CEO & CTO at ValueMentor, one of the region’s leading specialists in delivering Security Consulting Services discusses the value propositions the company delivers its clients.

Briefly, discuss the portfolio of solutions you bring to market? Kindly elaborate about your Cyber Risk & Compliance Services. Information Security enjoys top priority than ever before wherein organizations are mandated for compliance achievement by regional and global authorities in an attempt to make security hygiene practiced right from root levels. SIEM implementations with round clock monitoring, management involvement & awareness from ground levels, and ongoing security assessment practices are top areas which helps organizations achieve their security goals. We provide all-encompassing security services to our clients’ unique requirements. Our key service areas include Security Testing & Penetration Testing, Payment Security Services, Security Risks and Compliance services, MDR SOC Services / Managed Security Services, Incidence Response Service, Cyber Engineering and Cloud Security.

Elaborate on the new solutions /products you would be showcasing at GITEX? The key solutions we are offering are: MDR SOC – Next generation SIEM solution with the capability to detect and respond to latest threats. SecuSy - Vulnerability Management Platform- To help our clients run the periodic vulnerability scans to meet the compliance requirements. This is remotely managed by ValueMentor. Automated Penetration Testing Platform- Aimed to run penetration testing of commonly exploited vulnerabilities by hackers, on a periodic basis.

SMARTSMB / October 2019

Discuss the demand for penetration testing services in the region and your strengths in this segment? The importance of constant penetration testing cannot be emphasized enough. As business applications become increasingly complex, the attack vectors are also seemingly becoming more complex and sophisticated. To stay protected from malicious actors on the prowl, it is necessary for organizations to constantly test their defense against cyber security threats and update their resistance and remediation strategies. Our penetration testing service includes Application penetration testing, Mobile application penetration testing, Network penetration testing, Wireless penetration testing, IoT security testing, Red teaming exercises, SCADA penetration testing, PCI penetration testing, Social engineering tests, Firewall security review and Managed testing service. We perform Black Box, Grey Box and White Box testing as per the requirement of our clients. Our managed testing service sees an increasing demand wherein we chalk out periodic security testing plan for our clients and our security experts perform the testing on an on-going basis. Our managed testing service is helping our clients to be on track of their security objectives without worrying about planning and tracking their periodic testing.

Tell us about the expertise your team brings to the market? At ValueMentor, we have highly qualified security professionals with proven backgrounds in both technical & process management areas and most

Binoy Koonammavu CEO & CTO, ValueMentor

importantly, who are extremely passionate and enthusiastic about security domains. ValueMentor security expert team have the right mix of skills which is vital to the smooth and successful execution of any project. Our team members have years of experience in handling security assessments, audits and devising customized security solutions. We have proven expertise in domains such as banking, financial services and insurance (BFSI), Telecom, Healthcare, Oil & Gas, Retailers, ISP, Payment Gateways, Could Service providers, Payment Processors, Hospitality, Travel and Tourism.

Elaborate on your go to market model as well as support for clients? We are a strategic consulting company in the space of cyber security and secure digital transformation. One of our core values is “High Performance” and our customers highly appreciates it. This leads to a lot of loyal customers as our “High Performance” approach is ensuring “Customer Success”. Our team is aligned to ensure that we have a partner relationship with our customers than a vendor relationship. This approach results in better customer retention and provides win-win for both our customers and us.


Service DeďŹ ned Network Easily and securely connect people and devices

IoT digital business Generate new outcomes from millions of things

Proactive analytics Use data analytics and AI to enable differentiated digital business processes

IT as a business engine Enable business productivity enhancement and revenue generation

Digital Age Networking http://www.securenet.ae/

+971 4 337 0300 sales@securenet.ae


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TALKPOINT

BRINGING ON THE FUTURE

Pranav Kumar CEO, ICD Technologies LLC

IC Digital is a UAE based solutions provider that aims to fuel a future where automation & digitization can help organizations enhance the work environment by optimizing workflows. Pranav Kumar, Chief Executive Officer, ICD Technologies LLC discusses some of the key focus areas for the company

Elaborate on the company's inhouse expertise for enabling and supporting RPA deployments.

Discuss the solutions and consulting focus of IC Digital and the vendors you would have partnered with?

IC Digital has a team of master certified RPA professionals; our in-house expert capabilities include Pre-sales, Delivery, and Support. Our Consultants diligently analyze business processes and provide ideas and roadmap for automation, along with a Return on Investment (ROI) calculator. We often advise our clients to start from “Low Complexity – High Value” automation opportunities, which not only allows for quick, measurable wins but also encourages the clients to take on complex projects with confidence. Our Implementation and support team ensures timely delivery and support. Besides all of that, we have also adopted healthy account management practice, with a strong focus on building a long-term partnership with our clients.

The visionary leadership of Dubai and the UAE have realized the power of AI to bring a significant transformation to the country. IC Digital recognizes itself with the Smart Dubai initiative by the Dubai Government and envisions a future where technology will help build a more efficient workplace and happier societies. At IC Digital, we are passionate about shaping the future of work, by bringing enhanced efficiency and greater security to our clients in the region. Ever-Increasing Cloud adoption is opening a new window of opportunity to benefit from emerging technologies, such as Artificial Intelligence, IoT, Robotics, etc. However, it is also true that new emerging technologies have also increased vulnerability to cyberthreats. Our Company’s specialization lies in the field of AI-powered Robotic Process Automation (RPA) and Intelligent Cybersecurity. We have partnered with the world’s top-class vendors in the respective area — Automation Anywhere for the RPA; Darktrace, Mimecast for Cybersecurity. Our RPA Consulting team reviews our client’s business processes and determines the level of digitization, automation, and then creates a solution roadmap for the technology adoption as per client current state, challenges, and aspirations. Currently, our primary focus is on mid-market and enterprise customers in the Middle East region.

With Automation as one of the key focus areas for the company, discuss the outlook for RPA adoption. Tell us about the biggest adopters of RPA? At its core, RPA is a software that assists knowledge workers in completing repetitive mundane tasks with high speed and accuracy, allowing people more time for higher-value tasks. Combine RPA with AI-based Cognitive and Analytical capabilities, and it creates a robust digital workforce. The biggest adopters of RPA today include Banks, Insurance companies, Utilities, and Telecommunications companies. However, the opportunities exist across industries; for instance, we have a great interest from Hospitality for Reservations & Cancellations, Loyalty Management, Procure-to-Pay Processes. Healthcare is another excellent example where the focus is on improving health, lowering costs, and providing better access to care for patients. RPA helps provide evidence-based care, which is both efficient and accurate. In Banking, most popular use cases are in the areas of Customer Service, Compliance, Loan and card processing, Accounts Payable, KYC Process, General Ledger, etc. Insurance popular use cases are in the areas of Underwriting, Claims processing, Policy cancellation, Regulatory Compliance, etc. In fact, I see automation possibilities across verticals and industries, when it comes to payroll processing, report aggregation, onboarding, order processing, customer complaint management, invoice processing, and many more.

Tell us about IC Digital’s cybersecurity focus areas and how do you differentiate? IC Digital’s consultative & assessment-based approach helps identify the cybersecurity vulnerabilities in the client’s environment, based on which we make our recommendations. Our cybersecurity portfolio includes AI-powered solutions, which are capable of neutralizing standard and new threats while maintaining normal operations. It can protect against threats to the cloud, email, IoT, and networks. We have seen that over 90% of the cyberattacks come via email; hence we also have a strong focus on email security & resilience solutions that help detect and block malicious spear-phishing email that includes both known and unknown threat or new malware, malicious URLs, and the attempts to impersonate senior staff members.


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GITEX FEATURE

TECHNOLOGY FOR HUMAN EMPOWERMENT GITEX 2019 seeks to put the spotlight on working towards the perfect synchronisation between technology and humanity, by acknowledging how they complement one another and are not mutually exclusive Gitex 2019, which is the 39th version of the event, is being held under the theme, “synergising the mind and technology economy”. Through this theme, GITEX 2019 is bringing together stakeholders in the technology economy to work towards a mindful balance between the unbridled power of technology and the human mind, to set the collaboration guidelines for man and machine, and to lead the creation of a new techno-humanity society. That said, the event will be an opportunity as always to showcase some of the newer technologies, as revealed by some select exhibitors.

2019 portfolio includes our Western Digital Ultrastar Data Center drives. Delivering highly dependable performance to any storage environment, Ultrastar hard drives are designed for demanding workloads (up to 550TB per year), 10 times the workload rating of desktop drives. Moreover, these drives employ advanced technologies for enterprise-class reliability and power efficiency, to deliver a lower total cost of ownership, so you can safeguard more of your valuable data. The Ultrastar family delivers a long-standing tradition of reliability with an unbeaten 5-year limited warranty,”

Khwaja Saifuddin, Senior Sales Director at Western Digital Corporation (WDC), Middle East, says, “Part of our GITEX

Saifuddin adds that, Wester Digital will also be showcasing a complete portfolio of storage platforms and servers designed to thrive under the most demanding performance and capacity needs during Gitex 2019. SonicWall, the network security vendor announced its participation at GITEX 2019 where it will exhibit its integrated cybersecurity platform designed to help SMBs, mid to large enterprises and government agencies defend against today’s sophisticated and rapidly growing cybersecurity threats.

Assaad El Saadi Regional Director – Middle East, Pure Storage

“SonicWall has been working relentlessly with our partners to better understand and serve our customers in the region,” said Mohamed Abdallah, Regional Director for Middle East & Turkey, SonicWall. “While businesses continue to be a prime target for cybercriminals, we have seen organizations demonstrating a clear maturity and readiness for the next level of cybersecurity. We look forward to

Khwaja Saifuddin Senior Sales Director, Western Digital Corporation (WDC)

demonstrating the depth of our growing solutions portfolio, including our patent pending Real-Time Deep Memory Inspection (RTDMI) technology that has discovered 104,000 never-before-seen attack variants from January to August alone.” Pure storage will be celebtrating their 10th anniversary during this year’s GITEX edition; whereby they will showcase the next-generation evolution in their flagship all-flash array solutions, hybrid cloud offering and innovations in AI that enable a modern data experience. At GITEX, a central showcase for Pure’s

SMARTSMB / October 2019


GITEX FEATURE

AI, big data, cloud and software defined as the four major technologies or trends that are impacting the data center market in the region. “From our perspective, cloud is a particularly big driver for the simple fact that most CIOs have now moved beyond simple “all on-prem” or “all cloud” strategies to realize that they’re both powerful tools that can deliver on their IT strategies. They are opting instead for a modern, hybrid IT approach, with a real commitment to using both depending on the relevant workload,” explains El Saadi.

modern data experience will be their flagship all-NVMe and NVMe-oF flash storage arrays. The company will unveil FlashArray//C ― the industry’s first capacity-optimised all-flash array. “Visitors to our stand will get a firsthand view of several major additions to the Pure Storage Cloud Data Services portfolio, as we continue to deliver on our hybrid cloud vision,” said Assaad El Saadi, regional director – Middle East, Pure Storage. “With AI as a major theme at the event, we will also highlight how the technology is empowering regional enterprises to go “AI-first”. With solutions built on Pure’s industry-leading file and object system, FlashBlade, and its joint AI-Ready Infrastructure (AIRI) offering with NVIDIA, customers can develop and deploy AI rapidly to keep pace with modern business,” he added

Technology upsurge There are some defining factors thart are driving digital transformartion. Evolution of edge data centers and software defined data centers with the introduction of 5G and concepts like mobile edge computing, according to Saifuddin, are just some of the factors driving new technology adoptions. “The primary driver of edge data centers and the need to reduce latency to support a range of applications from autonomous vehicles to artificial intelligence to deep learning to robotic

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Mohamed Abdallah Regional Director for Middle East & Turkey, SonicWall surgery has made a profound impact on the progression of the data center market,” he explains. “Traditional data centers are now feeling the impact of disruption from the cloud, edge computing, advances in colocation and hosting services. In addition, advances in the areas of power, cooling, telecommunications, artificial intelligence, operations, hardware and software are transforming enterprise data centers as never before. 5G, Serverless computing, Artificial intelligence (AI), Network agility & Edge computing will drive the growth of data center market in the region,” he continues.

SonicWall will showcase its networking and security solutions, including next-generation firewalls, RTDMI, next- generation endpoint protection, secure SD-WAN, secure Wi-Fi, Security-as-a-Service, Cloud App Security (CAS), WAN acceleration, web application firewalls, security analytics, email security and secure remote access. “SonicWall solutions help drive and secure our customers’ digital transformation journey,” said Mohamed Abdallah. “With our single-pane-of-glass integrated security management, coupled with analytics and real-time threat intelligence protection across our ecosystem, we are providing partners with a complete cybersecurity portfolio to meet every security need.” The 39th edition of GITEX is therefore likely to provide a good glimpse of what new technologies wil be coming to market soon.

October 2019 / SMARTSMB


18

TALKPOINT

A HOLISTIC APPROACH

Founded in 2013, Mindfire Technologies is a leading information technology, consulting and business process IT services company that focuses on innovative software, Cloud, Data Intelligence and Cyber Security solutions and IT Services. Vijay George Stephenson, Vice President at Mindfire Technologies discusses the company’s areas of specialization our holistic Managed Digital Security Platform, Cyborg Security. Further, we are expanding. We have opened our new offices in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait to offer our Cyber Security and cloud offerings.

Do you also offer any cloud-based solution deployment? Discuss the impact of cloud in the SI Business?

Vijay George Stephenson VP, Mindfire Technologies

Briefly discuss the major solutions you will be showcasing at GITEX? We have four main vendor partners in this GITEX which include Arcon, a leading Privilege Access Management solution in the market; Paessler AG which is known as PRTG Network Monitoring; Heimdal, a next generation Unified security solution and Alienvault, the best SIEM Solution we have ever seen which was recently acquired by AT & T Cyber Security. We have also partnered with Fortinet, Sophos, Mimecast, Hornet Security, Spirent, McAfee, GovernLan Reach, Netwrix, Trapx in this region. We have partnerships with Dell EMC, VMware, Microsoft, Google, Azure and AWS for the platform technology and their digital offerings. Gitex has always been an ideal platform to announce something new. We are coming up with four main announcement this time. We have enhanced our MSSP Partnership with AT & T Cyber Security with additional advanced integrations of service offerings. We are moving the focus from traditional endpoint solutions to Heimdal Security which can deliver much more in a single agent. I believe Heimdal Security will make a lot of buzz this year in this market. We are also announcing

SMARTSMB / October 2019

Once a technological curiosity, the cloud has become integral to modernizing the IT environment and enabling the digital transformation of companies large and small. Mindfire is one of the early cloud players across the region and we work with all the leading Public Cloud and Private cloud vendors, and have the necessary skills and capabilities to provide turnkey solutions. “lifting and shifting” applications and data from on-premises services to cloud platforms is a complex endeavor that requires companies to build new capabilities. One often-overlooked capability is planning the cloud transition. IT leaders need to weigh the pros and cons of migrating each application or data asset. This often requires extensive dialogue with both cloud-services providers and software vendors so that companies can understand how their offerings are likely to evolve. Another key area of focus is managing cybersecurity during and after the transition. Companies should take stock of cloud-service providers’ security resources and determine how to adapt their own cybersecurity practices to balance speed and protection. Mindfire Digital excellent Center having advanced skills on platform, Business Applications and Digital Security, which enable customers to build proper roadmap for the cloud adoption.

Kindly elaborate on the expertise and the competences of your different teams

Mindfire’s Cyber Security team is well trained in most of the products from leading vendor products with extended knowledge of integration with platform and advances business solutions Our team holds Industry Certifications and hands own experience to fight against advanced Digital Security challenges. Mindfire Digital excellent Center having certified and experienced Experts on Multivendor enterprise platforms, Virtualization, Cloud and Business Applications, who can assist our cyber security team for integrations, best practices and build proper business use cases. Mindfire’s Continuous Learning Program enables employees to enhance their skills and knowledge at their own pace through a personalized development design—empowers employees to perform effectively and adapt to changes in the global technology and industry.

What are your key verticals of focus and success? Mindfire’s core focus is on Cyber Security with strong capabilities in Cloud and Digital Solutions. It is all about addressing the requirements to reimagining of agile business needs, cloud and the digital world with advances security framework. As a trusted Technology partner we must therefore evolve our professional-services capabilities to meet the new needs, address the complex challenges with a fast pace. Mindfire offers Most advances intelligent Solutions that address Cyber security Core Framework Functions and Categories. We offers Managed Security services and we have most advanced intelligent platform offerings with modular components which enable the tailor-made offerings for SME and Enterprises.


20

TALKPOINT

ENABLING SECURED ACCESS Pulse Secure is a leading provider of software-driven Secure Access solutions for people, devices, things and services that improve visibility, protection and productivity for our customers. Abdul Rehman, Regional Sales Director - MEA at Pulse Secure elaborates on the company’s focus Discuss the shifts in the Secure Access solutions segment? Traditional security perimeters have shifted and organizations must be able to extend dynamic, on-demand application access to users without compromising security or user experience. By enabling secure “verified” user and device access to only authorized applications, Pulse Software Defined Perimeter helps customers reduce their exposure to advanced threats, while simplifying connectivity and improving experience. The attack surface is reduced through per-application network segmentation and direct access to authorized applications. Extensive multi-factor authentication and authorization ensures that users, their devices, and the applications they access are continuously verified. Enterprises benefit from improved access responsiveness and application security. Pulse Secure’s evolutionary approach to deploying Software Defined Perimeter helps customers to invest to expand as needed, and accelerate their digital transformation while protecting their existing investments

Briefly, discuss the portfolio of solutions you bring to market? Pulse Secure is Focused on Secure Access Solution and Zero Trust model and all of our products are focused on that, with our Products covering all kind of Access from External to internal, From Private Cloud to Public cloud and from Company Managed Devices to BYOD, Our Products includes VPN & Cloud Access Solution, NAC and ProSMARTSMB / October 2019

filer capability, MDM Solution, Virtual Application Delivery controllers with WAF and out latest Software Defined Parameter we have all covered.

Elaborate on the new solutions / products you would be showcasing at GITEX? We will be show casing most of our products and new features added on and the integration with various vendors with focus on our SDP solution. Our Secure Access suites and bespoke solutions have been in the market for quite some time now, and are deployed in most of the key datacenters and environments in the Middle East. We will be using Gitex as a platform to enhance their messaging, and also show how they tie into a Zero Trust model that nearly all major organizations are looking to adopt.

What are the advanced solutions you offer that enable hybrid IT in a Zero Trust world? Who are the target client segments? Pulse Secure delivers a unified platform that secures physical and virtual IT resources across on-premise and cloud environments and across classic PCs and mobile devices. Pulse Connect Secure with Cloud Secure functionality extends the use of user and device identity to protect access to both the data center and cloud. Pulse Secure enables you to secure access to the cloud using the same policies and user client. Unlike siloed solutions, Pulse Secure enables rules to be written once and automatically applied enter-

Abdul Rehman Regional Sales Director – MEA, Pulse Secure prise-wide. Our unified policy engine is context-aware, enabling the enforcement of granular policies based on user, role, device, location, time, network and application, as well as endpoint security state. Our policy enforcement is standards-based to minimize IT administrative workloads and ensure interoperability with third-party solutions. The Pulse Client delivers a consumer-like user experience with a simple, easy to use interface that provides the convenience of Single Sign On (SSO) to applications across devices, operating systems and application infrastructures. Pulse vADC provides fast, reliable application delivery across the data center and cloud, ensuring the ultimate user experience. An intuitive user experience is also provided to IT administrators, who use centralized Pulse One to orchestrate all elements of access security – freeing them from the need to correlate data and actions across multiple security systems and consoles.

Elaborate on your go to market model as well as support for clients? Pulse Secure is currently focused to grow the Channel ecosystem within the region as we are identifying ourselves as a 100% Channel driven firm. Therefore, we are rigorously working not only on the expansion of our Channel Network but a very critical focus is Enabling our current Channel Partners, which is helping us position ourselves as an important opponent to in front of our competition.


     

        


22

COVER STORY

THE PURSUIT OF

TRANSFORMATION

By Baraka Jefwa

in this day and age digital transformation is not a matter of when your organization will start the journey, it has instead become a matter of how far your organization is in its transformation journey

Mid-market companies that are quick to embrace digital transformation achieve several desired outcomes including higher productivity; the milestones are a measure of what is achieved and yet, also symbolic of the fact that digital transformation is a journey, not a destination. Newer technologies will keep pushing the realms of possibilities for Businesses that can adopt and leverage. Saymaad Mansoor, Head of Information Technology Department, SIDDCO Group Limited, notes that the core requirement of any business is to cater to the growing process, information and control demands of both internal and external customers. Hence, user friendly data acquisition, assurance of data integrity and timely data dissemination should happen at the speed of thought. Actionable information which serves the basis for timely management decision making and remediation actions should not be delayed because it is being prepared and verified by individuals, rather it should come from the smart devices and connected gadgets powered by Artificial Intelligence. “As we see UAE, Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Egypt ambitiously target around a quarter of their overall GDP on industrialization in the next 5 years, it is of paramount importance for both newcomers and market leaders to take advantage of the capabilities offered by a range of new and exciting digital technologies to radically change how they plan and execute their business structures and strategies,” added Mr. SMARTSMB / October 2019

Mansoor. Echoing this, Mubarik Hussain, Director of IT, Bloom Holding, says, “digital transformation will prepare companies for the future and help them accelerate their growth, reduce their costs, offer their customers better products and services,”

are currently embracing include IoT, machine learning, analytics, AI,” During their digital transformation journey, SIDDCO was essentially working on several disparate systems whereby they had one system for sales, one for manufacturing, another for accounting and finance and yet another for quality. Just like many

Digital transformation has become more than just a buzz word, it’s now a reality and mid-market are embracing this journey for the betterment of their business. A recent Deloitte midmarket survey revealed a significant shift toward technology-enabled transformation as many companies pursue investments to increase productivity, improve customer engagement, and protect digital data. To this point Hussain notes that Bloom Holdings is, “embracing technology as a key enabler and differentiator that will give our business an edge. Solutions we

Mr. Saymaad Mansoor Head of IT, SIDDCO Group Limited


24

COVER STORY

Mr. Mubarik Hussain Director of IT, Bloom Holding

other companies going through their transformation journeys, SIDDCO was able to understand that technology is just one part of digital transformation and that a clear strategy is required for their journey to be successful and were hence able to fix their problem. “By introducing an ERP system and feeding it data streams from smart devices across the shop floor, our quality engineers can now analyze vast amounts of data on just about any parameter. This has allowed us to not only get to the root cause and correct defects sooner, but more importantly, we have been able to put in several preventative measures that have significantly reduced material wastage, improved manufacturing processes, quality of products and most importantly profitability ratios,” explained Mansoor.

DIGITAL DISRUPTION IS HERE Forrester notes that only 27% of businesses have a coherent digital strategy. A proper strategy is a priority for businesses on the transformation journey as it allows for clear goals to SMARTSMB / October 2019

be set and thus gives the businesses a clear roadmap of targets they should achieve.

main at the top of my list as amalgamation of AI has stemmed into smarter robots handling manufacturing lines and logistics,” added Mr. Mansoor.

“Disruption by technology is nothing new for sure, we have seen giants like Kodak, Blockbuster, Nokia, Blackberry etc. falling prey to the same. Following suite most businesses have sleepwalked into the 21st century without making any significant changes to their infrastructures, strategies and leadership styles,” said Mr. Mansoor. “This last century approach is no longer fit for purpose and businesses should operate as a haptic sensor listening to its talented, creative, smart and technologically acquainted customer. They should thrive for an inspiring digital identity and strategy to retain focus and excite stakeholders; whereby digital is not just about e-commerce, but genuine reimagining the value propositions of products and services they provide,”

Hussaini predicts that it will be a combination of: IoT, AI, machine learning, analytics and blockchain technologies that will continue to disrupt various industries in the coming year. “Those technologies as the solutions will combine and work together to give better products and services for customers,” he explained.

Hussain is of the view that for businesses to prepare for disruption they should, “engage with entrepreneurial ecosystem, innovate, work with technology startups to see how you can both benefit through their solutions and redefine your business model utilizing technology to be able to enhance your internal systems and improve your products and services”. He further explains that when it comes to the most disruptive technologies of 2019 several are having an impact including: IoT, AI, machine learning, analytics and blockchain. “If we define disruptive technology in terms of impact upon operations of any business, then Robotics is completely flipping businesses and the workforce upside down in the region for the past few years. Robotics re-

“In my opinion 3D printing is all set to shine next year in our region, we are witnessing motivated individuals and organizations spending substantial amount of time and effort in this area. Projects for 3D printed homes and cars are either under the pipeline or almost completed, promoting further industrial adaption,” said Mansoor. While the age of digital has cost many people jobs, it has also created many new jobs for others so human beings should continue to stay positive and embrace this revolution as it is aimed at easing the way we live our lives. “For more than a century, we as human beings have been filling-in for the economical availability of robotics, smart devices, computational / calculation power and AI. Now that the shift is monetarily feasible, technologically stable and inevitable, it is the need of the time and an organization’s responsibility that blue-collar worker be trained to cohesively exist and transformed into a skilled contributor towards the digital transformation. Yes, some jobs have been, and will be eliminated, however greater number of employment opportunities are anticipated as digital transformation is for people and businesses collectively,” explained Mansoor. “I am optimistic that technology adoption will create more jobs and growth, entrepreneurial ecosystems in cities will contribute to this creating more jobs, wealth and solutions that will offer a better quality of life and lifestyle for people,” concluded Hussain.


26

TALKPOINT

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As a systems integrator in the region what makes Commnet stand out from the competition? KN: COMMNET’S biggest strength always has been the abundance of skilled Manpower, at a time where SI’s offload the requirements to manpower companies. In current market Scenario, most of our competition do not have technical resources on their payroll and are always on a reactive mode. However the biggest advantage with Commnet is that the resources who are part of our projects are on our payroll and are locally available split across Dubai, Abu Dhabi & Northern Emirates. Our next biggest differentiator is our commitment towards customers , since we are in a customer service industry there are no fixed timings and we are available 24/7.

Kindly elaborate on your networking solution NN:Commnet offers wired and wireless business network solutions, that offer a consistent user experience and address common networking challenges, allowing you to take control of your networks future, all the while allowing you to remain flexible to adopt new technologies, improve your IT infrastructure overall. Our successful track record in Networking has been built upon a number of strong foundations including: A solid approach built upon a proven methodology using project managers with experience and understanding. The use of market-leading, cost competitive hardware and software solutions and proven technical architecture and design services by our highly experienced team. Effective SMARTSMB / October 2019

WI-FI survey and network deployment engineers with many man-years of experience deploying similar projects ,As well as networking design, planning and installation we also provide consultancy, maintenance and on-going support.

Discuss the other solutions you bring to market? NN: Apart from Networking Portfolio we are also in the Server Infrastructure , Audio Video , Private Cloud , Information Security Consulting and Deployment of IOT devices and one of the very few vendors in the GCC certified for DATA Center( DESIGN/BUILD/ DEPLOY) program. We have partnered with Aruba , VEEAM , VMWARE , TRIPPLITE , MICROSOFT , CORNING , APC, Huawei Technologies to name few As part of our integration offering we have partnered with various OEM’s for services and solutions to cater to the market. Apart from that our core service offerings are data center design & implementation, infrastructure services, professional services/IT staff outsourcing, information security, information security consulting, IP telephony and CCTV surveillance. We are currently in the Hospitality, Manufacturing and Retail Sector; however we are also looking at different avenues like Government and oil Sectors too

Elaborate any new announcements the new solutions /services you would be showcasing at GITEX? GK: Commnet has been in the Integration Business for over a decade and definitely would want to take a Giant leap this year . Hence we are custom-

Karthikeyan Narayanasamy CEO, Commnet izing our solutions and packaging into the ones accepted by our customers. We have Hospitality Packages ranging from Mid-level to higher end customers . Tailored the services as per their existing requirements .

Kindly elaborate on the expertise and the competences of your different teams? KN: We have different teams such as Personal Systems , Enterprise Services , Software Services, Professional Services & Networking team. In all these teams, we would have at least 70% of resources certified in each of the domains and with experience of over 10+ more sites deployed. Over the years we have built up an impressive list of client deployments and in recognition of our work and achievements with these solutions Our IT networking solutions are as follows Network Design, Network Planning, Network Deployment , Network Security, Network Analysis and Reporting , Remote Network Management ,Network Support

What are your key verticals of focus and success? GK: One of the key verticals for Commnet is surely the Hospitality Industry along with Manufacturing and Banking Sectors. With at least 15 Hospitality projects deployed in 12-18months, we can proudly say that most of them were completed within the stipulated period of time. This makes us one of the sought after partners in this space of the business. Few of the reasons of our success are customer focus and service, our attention to human resource the diversification into newer markets/regions including Oman, Singapore & India.


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MANUFACTURING

MADE IN UAE

The manufacturing industry is the second largest contributor to UAE’s GDP after oil. But have technological interventions disturbed the equilibrium in manufacturing? By Diksha Vohra UAE’s manufacturing industry doesn’t have a long history. Over three-four decades ago, there were hardly any manufacturers in the region. The focus back then was more on oil based industrial activities because of the abundance of the same. However, in recent times, with low oil prices pre-vailing for a long time, the UAE Government has begun to encourage non-oil businesses to further contribute to the region’s GDP. One such contributor is the manufacturing industry. Presently contributing to 11% of the total GDP, the Government is hoping it would increase to 25% by 2025. As mentioned in the UAE Economic Vision 2030, the region is witnessing a rise in industrial activities to achieve sustainable economic diversification. For manufacturers, however, the trends have skewed towards collaboration more than competition in the recent years. “The profit margins across the board have gone down due to the increasing costs and competition,” says Kunal Vadhani, CEO of AAB Industries LLC. “Hence, the need to be lean and asset light has become very very important for every manufacturing company. The key is to not try and do every-thing by yourself but rather focus on your core competency and outsource the rest. This is the time to collaborate rather than compete.” With an influx of manufacturers in the region thanks to facts like cheap labour, access to global markets, sea ports and easy land transportation, and over that the advancement of technology have transformed manufacturing into a competitive industry. However, as Kunal mentions, it has also created opportunities for col-

SMARTSMB / October 2019

laboration based on individual expertise. There is a sharp decline in the ‘one stop shop’ concept in the industry with most entrepreneurs understanding the value and benefits of collaboration. Technology has made this process much easier. Meenaxy Vashisht, Founder of Go Organic, says: “Previously we had to do everything manually. We had to find suppliers manually and also find places to sell our goods on our own. Now, things have changed. We have multiple options in terms of food delivery apps, getting connected to supermarkets and hypermarkets easily and stocking products on their shelves. It is a lot less time consuming and complex.”

Meenaxy Vashisht Founder, Go Organic

However, Kunal feels differently. According to him, the impact of technology is felt more in the B2C sector of manufacturing instead of B2B. “To be honest, it hasn't disrupted our industry to a very large extent. Yes, the machinery has become faster and more efficient and hence it has actually made things better for us as now we can produce much more in the same amount of time and with a higher level of precision.” While the

manufacturing process has acquired an increased momen-tum, the overall quantity required hasn’t changed much over the last few years. The challenge now is to create new needs or impress existing customers with additives. For instance, Kunal says: “…what it is making us do is innovate a lot more with the packaging so the products look and feel even better.”


MANUFACTURING

Another repercussion of advanced technology is the subsequent skill gap which is somehow being felt in the larger B2B segment of the industry. While industrialisation has become a national priority, according to reports the kind of jobs that need to be filled are no longer the traditional ones, in labs or factories for instance. Instead,

rise, and will intensify in 2019. “In terms of skills adaptability, we all do have to stay in tune with the newest trends in technology not just for Production but even for Sales & Marketing,” says Kunal. “All our employees receive regular training on the machines they use and I myself learn about the newest trends in the industry so I can ask the right person in our team to take it up and master it. We as an organization believe that learning and development is the key to success in any business.” Where Kunal has invested in up-skilling his employees and himself, Meenaxy has decided to walk a different route. “I don’t like to disturb the existing process and so when new requirements come, I hire new employees who can take up those tasks. So, while technological advancements have not heavily impacted our manufacturing process, for everything else around it like IT management and more, we believe in hiring new talent who know what they need to do.”

Kunal Vadhani CEO, AAB Industries LLC

they are jobs that necessitate the use of computers, data, coding and analytical skills. This dramatic shift has resulted in a skills gap as the requirement for manufac-turing workers to understand and operate 4IR machinery and technologies increases. Consequent-ly, an effort to shift skills towards vocational training and digitalisation is essential, is already on the

Despite all the training in place, Kunal does not feel that one can completely witness a zero skill gap. “With this ever changing business environment and the technology changing quicker than one can learn and master, I believe there is always a skill gap. It is important stay nimble and adapt the right skill at the right time rather than try and learn everything. The key to prospering in this quickly changing scenario is to have the right team. Skills can be learnt, but you need the right people with the right attitude to do so.” Meenaxy

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seconds the thought and is especially impressed with the mil-lennials and believes in giving them a chance because what they can do with their mindset is totally different from what traditional workers could or can do. On the external front of development, the Government has been providing increased support too. Recently, many new manufacturing units have been set up and foreign direct investments have also been welcomed. Currently, Abu Dhabi is emphasizing on heavy industries, as they have inex-pensive energy sources; while the Emirates of Dubai and Sharjah are focused on light industries and service sectors. The setting up of the Dubai Industrial Park spread over an area of 55 square kilometers, currently housing over 680 companies; speaks for the bar set by the UAE. The manu-facturing sector in Abu Dhabi witnessed a growth of 6 per cent in 2018 with 42 new industries start-ing production with an investment of Dh12.3 billion to boost non-oil GDP, according to the latest re-port released by the Industrial Development Bureau of the Department of Economic Development (DED) Meenaxy, however, feels that despite all the provisions, the business scenario hasn’t changed much for the manufacturers. “Honestly, it was much easier to do business back then than today. The laws are becoming more stringent with taxes being levied leading to weaker cash flows. The Government should definitely look into relaxing financial laws in order to encourage business re-gionally.” On the way forward, Kunal comments that innovation is what would drive the future of manufactur-ing. “We just have to find newer and more innovative ways of running a business. This is no longer a time for businesses which have been run the same way for decades. If we do not adapt, we cannot survive. So I would say, stay sharp, take calculated risks and grow in measured steps rather than exponentially. I am a believer of growing slowly and steadily in Business, unless you have an innovative product, then you can grow exponentially.”

October 2019 / SMARTSMB


TALKPOINT

SECURING IDENTITY MANAGEMENT Mohammed Zaheer GM, Digital Factors

The demand for identity management and secure access solutions must be seeing a constant growth as all organizations would be expected to have a need for these solutions. However, do you see all organizations seeing these solutions as a priority focus in the region? The physical security market, which also includes video surveillance solutions, access control, perimeter security and others, is expected to see growth in the coming years. The market for commercial and cybersecurity, fire protection, smart home solutions and drones, worth a combined $7 billion in 2018, is expected to grow to $16.4 billion by 2024. Identity and access management is the information security discipline that allows users access to appropriate technology resources & premises, at the right time. It incorporates three major concepts: identification, authentication and authorization. Together, these three processes combine to ensure that specified users have the access they need to do their jobs, while unauthorized users are kept away from sensitive resources and information. Effective IAM solutions help enterprises facilitate secure, efficient access to technology resources across these diverse systems, while delivering a number of important benefits: ... Reduced security costs: Using a single IAM platform to manage all user access allows admin-

A Platinum Distributor for several brands, Digital Factors specializes in providing high-quality System Integration solutions equipped with a complete range of business offerings like Enterprise Asset Tracking & Security, Cashless Payments, Credential Management, Mobile Secure Identity Capture & Verification and Physical & logical access security system. Mohammed Zaheer, General Manager at Digital Factors discusses the various solutions the company offers. istrators to perform their work more efficiently.

Briefly, discuss the portfolio of solutions you bring to market and the vendors you are partnered with? We at Digital Factors are specialized in providing the best Identity issuance management solutions across ME&A and South Asia. Our solutions portfolio starts right from issuing an secure ID card, physical access system & Building management, Card/Biometric/facial time attendance system, Logical Access with multi factor authentication for PC/Server/OS/Applications login and enterprise IT asset tracking solutions for large datacenters. We are partnered with world leading brands like HID Global (world leaders in card, access readers and controllers) Invixium (Best in its class T&A readers), Lenel S2 systems (BMS system) ,Digit9 ( Multi spectral Biometric Readers) and IRIZ ID for software application and solutions to drive and add value to the above hardware products and brands.

Elaborate on the new solutions /products you would be showcasing at GITEX? Apart from our legacy products and solutions, we will be showcasing the most enhanced versions of our Card issuance, and mobile based handhelds and EKYC solutions. Our focus this gitex will be to introduce the high

secure multi spectral biometric readers and solutions in our market as there is big need for reliable biometric reading products and solutions in our market.

What are the advanced biometric solutions you offer? and what are their standout features? Who are the target client segments? We offer Digit9 IAM Solutions are aimed at system integrators and security solution providers who believe in delivering top quality and high performance biometric solutions to their clientele. The key differentiators are ALL weather sensors, 3 Layer skin deep, Live finger detection, Fake finger detection. We target these products and solutions primarily for National ID verifications, Single sign on, Loss prevention in retails, sentinel custodial management, VIP/black list identifications.

Elaborate on your go to market model as well as support for clients? We at DFS cover ME&A from our base in UAE, we work directly in UAE on projects offering total solutions from pre sales to project management where as in ME&A we work through a dedicated channel partner network who are very well trained on our products and solutions to sell and support in their respective country.

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SMART SMB SUMMIT ROUNDUP

A CONFLUENCE OF THE MID-MARKET’S BEST Second annual Smart SMB Summit brings continuous pursuit of digital excellence into focus The second edition of the Smart SMB Summit & Awards, held on the 11th of September at Atlantis, The Palm, lived up to its expectations with a massive turnout of over 1500 ‘C’ level executives. Organized by Business Media International, premier publishers for the mid-market and organizers of large format industry events, the event ran under the theme ‘Redefining digital & Business Transformation’. As the early movers on the road to digital transformation achieve several desired outcomes including higher productivity, the milestones are a measure of what is achieved and yet, also symbolic of the fact that digital transformation is a journey, not a destination. Newer technologies will keep

SMARTSMB / October 2019

pushing the realms of possibilities for Businesses that can adopt and leverage. The 2019 edition of Smart SMB Summit brought this continuous pursuit of digital excellence into focus. “We had an outstanding event last year and saw an impressive number of decision makers attending the various sessions. Likewise, this year’s event has also been quite constructive in enhancing more detailed awareness of how digital transformation is now integral to Business transformation,” said Saumyadeep Halder, CEO of Business Media International. “Digital transformation has started out at several companies but this a continuous journey as technologies

evolve further, necessitating the adoption and integration of what is relevant by Businesses looking to enhance their strategic advantages. For the many companies that are yet to commence their digital transformation initiatives or have started out already, this has been a great opportunity to further their understanding of various aspects around digital and business transformation in addition to the opportunity to network with peers,” said Raman Narayan, Editor in chief and publisher at Business Media International. Apart from a unique opportunity for the region’s ‘C’ level executives from the SMB/SME segment to meet and interact on one platform, an elaborate and


TALKPOINT

exclusive exhibition zone showcased exciting and pioneering technologies from exhibitors. The exhibition zone offered attendees the opportunity to enhance their understanding of several technologies, they will likely need to adopt in their acceleration towards embracing the digital economy. “We have been quite committed to such industry focused events since we began operations. The feedback from last year’s event had been very favorable, hence it encouraged us to extend events under the Smart SMB Summit banner across several countries including Bahrain, Oman, Kenya and soon to be held in Saudi Arabia as well. We ensure our events bring the value that attendees look to when they participate at such events,” said Ankit Shukla, MD at Business Media International. The event was supported by several leading companies as partners. These include Platinum partners Dell Technologies and Mindware as well as Gold sponsors - Microsoft, Salesforce, Sage, Veeam, Zendesk, Zoho,

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Redington and Intel; Silver PartnersEpicor, Mimecast and Bulwark, CVSaya. id, Happay, Pure Storage and Starlink; Exhibition partners D-Link, Finesse, YouFirst, Alcatel Lucent Enterprise and Securenet as well as strategic partners Smart World, Dubai Business Women Council and Mobile partner Webcastle. The event agenda included a summit in the afternoon followed by an Awards gala in the late evening. Dr. Saeed Al Dhaheri, Chairman, Smartworld presented the opening keynote as Chief Guest. The Summit included keynotes by industry and technology experts from leading vendors on various pertinent topics, panel discussions with industry luminaries as participants, case study presentations as well as a talk show with eminent industry icon Mr. Rizwan Sajan, the Founder and Chairman of Danube Group to close out engaging sequence of sessions, in furthering awareness of digital and business transformation imperatives. The panel discussion sessions had several CIOs and top executives from the region as participants.

October 2019 / SMARTSMB


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SPOTLIGHT/ KEYNOTES

HOW TO GROW TECH ENTREPRENEURS During his opening Keynote, Dr. Saeed Al Dhaheri, Chairman, Smartworld, set the tone for the event as he said, “we are in a new era called the fourth industrial revolution; which is characterised by integrating the physical and digital world using new technologies. This requires businesses to transform and embrace digital, in order to win new customers, expand their presence, lower operating costs and achieve competitive advantage,” He further explained, “digital transformation is a journey and not a destination. This summit is held to discuss strategies and best practices for us to embrace digital, and to showcase some of the best examples from companies in the UAE,” Dr. Al Dhaheri presented on the topic, ‘The Digital Start-up Ecosystem in the UAE: How to Grow Tech Entrepreneurs?’, where he pointed out that the topic is related to digital transformation because as the tech entrepreneurs continue to grow so will the digital ecosystem in the region. According Dr. Al Dhaheri, digital startups are key engines for wealth and job creation and they use new technologies to better serve their customers which helps to drive a digital economy.

HOW TO SUCCEED IN YOUR DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION Second up on the Smart SMB stage was Dany El Khoury, Senior Partner Manager, UAE & Gulf, Modern data Center, Dell Technologies, whereby he highlighted that digital transformation is disrupting every industry, as the global economy is going digital. “Digital economies all over the world are making major impacts to our lives and are changing how businesses are thinking when it comes to transformation. The heart of digital transformation is data; if we want to succeed in our transformation journey, we have to put data at the heart of any strategy,” said El Khoury. He further informed the audience that currently, every organisation needs to be a digital organisation powered by data and running in a multi cloud world in order to experience the benefits of the digital economy.

EMPOWERING SMB BUSINESS TRANSFORMATION Maureen Mansour-Khoury, Dynamics Business Group Manager, Microsoft UAE’s discussion immersed the audience at the Smart SMB Summit in insights from Microsoft on how SMBs in the UAE are being empowered for digital transformation. “We did our own research, as Microsoft, for SMBs in the UAE and we found out that SMBs know that technology is important for them to be able to survive,” said Ms. Mansour-Khoury. Echoing Mr. El Khoury’s sentiments, Ms. Mansour-Khoury said, “Every single industry today is going through a major digital disruption, the question businesses should ask themselves to fuel their digital transformation journey is: how are we changing our business models to better serve our customers with their increasing demands?”. She explained that for businesses to better compete in their respective industries they need to: keep operational costs low, reduce administrative costs for their employees and differentiate themselves with exceptional customer services, all of which can be achieved by utilising technology.

ENHANCING CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE VIA DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION While presenting on the topic: ‘Enhancing Customer Experience Via Digital Transformation’, Ali Shabdar, Business Development Director MEA, Zoho Corporation, stressed the point that, “customer experience is all about the people” adding that good customer experience management increases customers satisfaction, loyalty and advocacy. “We need technology for a good customer experience. The problem is that businesses forget about internal factors; customers are both external and internal because our employees are also customers. If we don’t include our employees on how they use our systems, they will not be able to deliver the best experience to our customers,” added Mr. Shabdar. Shabdar said, in no uncertain terms, that companies need digital transformation to enhance their customer experience but stressed that getting both your employees and your customers on board with your business’ vision is key to successful bringing Customer experience into your digital transformation.

SMARTSMB / October 2019


SPOTLIGHT/ KEYNOTES

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WINNING IN THE AGE OF INDUSTRY 4.0 Mansoor Sarwar, Technical Director, Sage talked to the audience about ‘winning in the age of industry 4.0’, explaining that industry 4.0 is blurring the lines between the physical, digital and biological spheres. Mr. Sarwar added that industry 4.0 strategies should have four main pillars, which include: people, software, hardware and connectivity. “I believe that alongside people, connectivity is a key pillar of digital transformation, as it has changed the 3rd industrial revolution into the 4th industrial revolution; because it has enabled machines to be able to talk to each other,” Sarwar said. He further explained, “digital transformation is challenging your business processes, finding where the rooms for reinventing the business processes are and then embarking on your journey”.

ROLE OF DATA MANAGEMENT IN DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION Mohamad Rizk Technical Sales Director, Veeam Software presented on the topic ‘Cloud Data Management Backup for What’s Next’ whereby he said that data is the new oil and explained that no organisation today would be able to operate without it. He continued by saying that the key to data is approaching its management in the right way, adding that that Veeam’s vision is, “To be the most trusted provider of Backup solutions that deliver Cloud Data Management,” Rizk further explained that, “it is essential organizations put in place a strong data management foundation, to ensure that their digital investments deliver the returns that they expect, creating a more intelligent — and more successful — business,”

ENABLING THE MODERN DATA EXPERIENCE Samer Semaan, Channel Manager Middle East, Pure Storage, said that ‘Enabling the Modern Data Experience’ is important because data is growing at a rapid pace as digital transformation and all these smart applications are producing a lot of data. Mr. Semaan informed the audience that 67 percent of businesses say data is so valuable it should be an asset on the balance sheet. Semaan noted that even though data is growing in both volume and importance to businesses, the biggest problem facing businesses when it comes to data is where to store the data. He went on to explain that, “With Pure Storage you can get an enterprise-class all flash storage that is simple, efficient and evergreen,” explained Mr. Semaan.

SUCCESSFUL DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION CASE STUDY PRESENTATION Kareem Tabbaa, Chief Product Officer Wahed Inc, an automated online investment platform, took the stage to give a case study of their successful digital transformation. Mr. Tabbaa explained that even though Wahed has been a digital company since day one they have been able to scale their tools as they grow. “I’m here to talk about client communication and user engagement. We are now available in 130 countries; as we continue to scale it’s important to us to both, maintain that human touch when dealing with our users and continue onboarding new agents to our platform,” he added. Tabbaa informed the audience that, in their search for a holistic and omni-channel support system, Wahed Invest chose Zendesk. He explained that Zendesk helps customers interact with the brand seamlessly because of features which include quick feedback loops, tailored communication, empowering internal teams and giving a holistic view.

October 2019 / SMARTSMB


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SPOTLIGHT/ PANEL DISCUSSIONS

KEY DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION DRIVERS FOR MID-MARKET COMPANIES The panellists for this session included: Solayman Refae, Group CIO, Webcor Group, Aliasgar Bohari, Director-IT, Zulekha Hospital, Veneeth Purushotaman, Group Chief Information Officer, Aster DM Healthcare, Mubarik Hussain, Director of IT, Bloom Holding, Robert Furlong, Regional Director – Digital Transformation, Salesforce EMEA and Shaun Levy, Cyber resilience strategist at Mimecast. The discussants went through an array of topics with the standout being, how the emergence of exponential technologies is changing the way mid-market companies are creating and capturing values. The discussion pointed out that exponential technologies are incorporated into solving today’s business problems in ways that it was not previously possible.

THE ROLE OF THE LEADERS IN SPEARHEADING SUCCESSFUL DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION Panelists for this discussion included: Vilhelm Hedberg, Co-Founder & CEO, eKar, Tariq Sanad, CFO, Fetchr, Onur Elgun, VP Strategy & Performance, Delivery Hero MENA (Talabat), Dona Benton, CEO, Entertainer, Dona Benton, CEO, Entertainer, Mansoor Sarwar, Technical Director Sage Middle East and Ali Shabdar, Business Development Director MEA Zoho Corporation. A key takeaway from the session was that, leaders whose organisations are going through a digital transformation journey should take their time to make their employees comfortable during the transition by training them on new systems and setting achievable objectives for them during this time so as to make the transition seamless.

OPTIMIZING TRANSFORMATION OUTCOMES AND AVOIDING FAILURES Discussing this topic was: Hassen Mouffok, Head of Sales, Middle east, Zendesk, MN Chaturvedi Director IT Oasis Investment Co. L.L.C, Mohamad Rizk, Technical Sales Director, Veeam Software, Terbit, Head of Business Strategy, CVSaya.ID, Ramesh Iyer, President & Chief Revenue Officer, Happay and Umesh Moolchandani, Group IT Head, Bin Dasmal General Trading. The panellists shared good insights into how companies from different verticals can shape their strategies and ensure that they are able to maximize the outcomes as they intended at the outset.

TALK SHOW The Summit’s main event was a talk show with Mr. Rizwan Sajan, Founder & Chairman, Danube Group. Mr. Sajan enthralled in a session where he talked about his company has stayed competitive over the years through continuous innovation. The evolution of Danube Group, one of the established building material firms in the Middle East, is directly linked to the journey of its Founder and Chairman, Rizwan Sajan. Bom and brought up in a middle-class family in Mumbai, India; Mr Sajan is a man with the 'Midas Touch'. He has built his company into the undisputed market leader for building materials in the GCC and now slowly and steadily moving his footprints towards property development and home improvement.

SMARTSMB / October 2019


AWARDS ROUND UP

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Smart SMB Digital Transformation Awards recognize some of the outstanding digital transformation deployments

The 2019 edition of the Smart SMB Digital Transformation awards was a culmination of a 2 months long exercise that included nominations submitted by mid-market companies and shortlisted. The winning entries were chose by an eminent jury panel. The awards felicitated the winners for their outstanding digital transformation deployments across verticals. Some of the companies that have grown into well known brands in the region were among the winners including companies such as Fetchr, The Entertainer, eKar and more that have leveraged technology innovations into their Business processes. In addition, awards were also presented to companies who have been making a vital contribution to facilitating digital transformation for Business customers.

These awards highlight digital transformation is gathering pace in the region as newer technologies are adopted to enhance operations and outcomes. The event was supported by several leading companies as partners. These include Platinum partners Dell Technologies and Mindware as well as Gold sponsors - Microsoft, Salesforce, Sage, Veeam, Zendesk, Zoho, Redington and Intel; Silver PartnersEpicor, Mimecast and Bulwark, CVSaya. id, Happay, Pure Storage and Starlink; Exhibition partners D-Link, Finesse, YouFirst, Alcatel Lucent Enterprise and Securenet as well as strategic partners Smart World, Dubai Business Women Council and Mobile partner Webcastle.

October 2019 / SMARTSMB


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AWARDS ROUND UP

ASTER DM HEALTHCARE Best Digital Transformation in Healthcare Aster DM Healthcare emerged winners for this category as they had three standout deployments over the past year which includes, Siemens Teamplay technology, AI influenced logic and AI health assistants.

MILLENNIUM HOTELS AND RESORTS Best Digital Transformation Deployment in Hospitality The winner of the category Best Digital Transformation Deployment in Hospitality Was Millennium Hotels & Resorts, a group that has enhanced its network connectivity for guests and visitors and has gone in for IP TV implementation rooms that helps guests to check, order foods & room amenities.

S P JAIN SCHOOL OF GLOBAL MANAGEMENT Best Digital Transformation in Education The winner of the Best Digital Transformation in Education was S P Jain School of Global Management. At this institution, computer-Aided Business Simulations are used extensively in the state-of-the-art technology-based Simulation Centres.

EMIRATES METALLIC INDUSTRIES COMPANY LIMITED Best Digital Transformation in Manufacturing Emirates Metallic Industries Company Limited was the winner of this category. The company has done several implementations of late including a full suite of ERP that streamlines their manufacturing workflows and several other functions.

SMARTSMB / October 2019

NATIONAL TAKAFUL COMPANY PSC, WATANIA Best Digital Transformation in Insurance National Takaful Company PSC, WATANIA won Best Digital Transformation in Insurance as they launched a new digital platform for B2B which will have the fastest policy issuance in the region.

MUSAFIR.COM Best Digital Transformation in Travel Musafir.com emerged victorious in this category thanks to three technology innovations: a modern web application with social tagging, Robotic Process Automation (RPA) and an autonomous booking chatbot.

FETCHR Best Digital Transformation in Logistics The winner of this category, Fetchr, is a company that has rewritten some rules of its domain. Against the backdrop of lengthy payment cycles that averages 1525 days, they have developed a COD solution with a daily reconciliation process across the region.

XTRAMIX GROUP OF COMPANIES Best Digital Transformation in Construction The winner of the category Best Digital Transformation in Construction went to Xtramix Group of Companies as they have migrated from Traditional ERP to full Web based ERP.

FIRST ABU DHABI BANK Best Digital Transformation in SME Banking

THE ENTERTAINER Best Customer Loyalty App of the Year

First Abu Dhabi Bank emerged victorious in this category thanks to their focus on automation and digitization for streamlined SME lending process with data driven & digital first being the principle for operating model changes.

The Entertainer won the award for Best Customer Loyalty App of the Year for disrupting its segment in the region with its lifestyle app and becoming a leading provider of Buy One Get One Free and money saving offers across the world.


AWARDS ROUND UP

EKAR Best Digital Transformation in Transportation

MICROSOFT Cloud Computing Vendor of the Year

The winner of this category, eKar, introduced the first Peer to Peer carsharing model in the middle east in partnership with Saudi Aramco in Dammam, Saudi Arabia.

The winner of the category Cloud Computing Vendor of the Year, Microsoft, is an industry leader that is accelerating its presence in cloud as mainstream adoption of workloads in the cloud gains further speed across Businesses.

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DEBBIE STANFORD - KRISTIANSEN, CEO, NOVO CINEMAS CEO of the Year

D-LINK SMB Networking Vendor of the Year

Debbie Stanford-Kristiansen, CEO, Novo Cinemas, won the CEO of the year award as she has led from the top and helped bring new technologies to the region when it comes to entertainment.

D-Link won in the category, SMB Networking Vendor of the Year, for being a company whose products and services meet the needs of digital home consumers, small to medium sized businesses, enterprise environments, and service providers.

JAYAKUMAR MOHANACHANDRAN, HEAD – IT, PRECISION GROUP

CIO of the Year The award for CIO of the year went to Jayakumar Mohanachandran, Head – IT, Precision Group, who has been in charge of the transformation at the Group of companies he works for from a legacy system that has been running for past 25 years towards deploying a full suite of Cloud ERP.

UMESH MOOLCHANDANI, GROUP IT HEAD, BIN DASMAL GROUP CISO of the Year Umesh Moolchandani, Group IT Head, Bin Dasmal Group, emerged as the winner of the CISO of the Year. He is someone who has led his company’s transition to a cloud ERP platform instead of investing in on-premise hardware.

DELL TECHNOLOGIES Best Digital Transformation Vendor Dell Technologies is a company that has a full portfolio of IT solutions encompassing infrastructure to software to storage and security, IoT, cloud computing etc and is ideally placed to provide its customers a comfortable digital transformation roadmap.

PURE STORAGE Storage Vendor of the Year The winner of this category, Pure Storage, enables customers to quickly adopt next-generation technologies, including artificial intelligence and machine learning, to help maximize the value of their data for competitive advantage.

SAGE Best ERP Vendor Sage emerged victorious in this category as it is known as one of the global leaders in the ERP marketplace. It is recognized for its micro-vertical expertise and has a strong focus in offering cloud ERP solutions.

ALCATEL-LUCENT ENTERPRISE UC vendor of the Year The winner of this category was Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise, a vendor who has focused on changing how businesses can deploy and consume communications technology.

October 2019 / SMARTSMB


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AWARDS ROUND UP

ZOHO ONE SaaS Provider of the Year

REDINGTON GULF Volume Distributor of the Year

Zoho One is a company that offers a single online platform capable of running an entire business. With 40+ apps in nearly every major business category, this vendor is one of the world's most prolific software companies.

Redington Gulf,the winner of the category Volume Distributor of the Year is one of the leaders in distribution of ICT products across the region.

VEEAM SOFTWARE Data Management Vendor of the Year

BULWARK TECHNOLOGIES Security VAD of the Year The winner of the category Security VAD of the Year goes to a company that has an end-to-end range of security solutions from leading security vendors.

The winner of the category, Veeam Software, is the leader in backup solutions that deliver Cloud Data Management.

SALESFORCE.COM CRM Vendor of the Year The winner of CRM Vendor of the Year was salesforce.com, a company that has led the CRM category for years and has continued to bring in new innovations.

MINDWARE VAD with Best Digital Transformation Focus Mindware, the winner of the category, has been bringing a comprehensive range of IT solutions from the world’s leading brands reaching out to over 3,500 resellers across more than 25 countries.

MIMECAST Email Security Vendor of the Year

REDINGTON VALUE Regional VAD of the Year The winner of the category Regional VAD of the Year is a company whose goal is to helps partners and customers transform to the new era of the smart digital world.

Mimecast, the winner of the category, is a cybersecurity provider that helps thousands of organizations worldwide make email safer, restore trust and bolster cyber resilience.

ZENDESK Digital Innovations in Customer Experience The winner of Digital Innovations in Customer Experience, Zendesk, is a company whose customer service and engagement products are powerful and flexible, and scale to meet the needs of any business.

YOUFIRST Easy Set-Up Services for SMB The winner of the category Easy Set-Up Services for SMB, YouFirst, is a company that provides a wide range of Business Setup Services in the UAE.

WEBCASTLE TECHNOLOGIES Digital Agency of the Year WebCastle Technologies, the winner of this category, is a web designing and development agency in Dubai, that has been able to change the fortunes of many small and medium-sized businesses by assisting them with result-oriented strategies.

SMARTSMB / October 2019


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STRATEGY

INCREASING REVENUE IN A

reclining market Most SMBs today are feeling the heat of the financial crunch. On the contrary, however, there are many businesses which are thriving. SmartSMB speaks to some renowned business consultants to find out why is there a disparity in success and what can businessmen do to grow. By Diksha Vohra celebrates, Kapil recalls how sometime ago all he wished was to have such profitable months. While most of Kapil’s competitors in the diamond and jewelry business continue to fight in their quest for survival, Kapil’s decisions in the right time bore him fruits eventually. “When I would do business before, I used to set goals but I didn’t realise how ambiguous they were,” says Kapil Dasani, founder and head of Dasani Connoisseur. “Many of our competitors were using different strategies. Some were providing heavy discounts while some were offering great deals. But none of these seemed to work for them and I didn’t want to repeat those mistakes.” These fears would seem plausible for several busiPriscilla Khambatta nessmen across the region Founder, MindKind Management Consulting who’re finding it hard to maintain enough liquidity or ensure enough cash flow despite all the promotional tactics. Priscilla KhambatIt is nearly the end of a working day ta, founder of MindKind Management but Kapil is busy in a meeting with his Consulting and Kapil’s business conteam. While he is busy reviewing the sultant says: “The top most challenge day’s tasks with his team and deleobviously is the current volatile ecogating the ones due the next day, his nomic environment followed by acsales head enters the meeting room. cess to right skills, continuous need to innovate and impact of regulations.” He announces that August 2019 has But in such a situation, does one stop been the most profitable month for doing business? Perhaps not. Dasani Connoisseur. The entire team SMARTSMB / October 2019

Let the fear go While there are talks about almost every industry experiencing a crunch, it is important to understand where your business is at the moment and not compare it with others. “Don’t listen to the noise,” says Neeru Sharma, Executive Coach and Managing Director of Marya Leadership Academy. “Focus on what your business insights are telling you and focus on what’s working.” She mentions how she had a discussion with a client sometime ago who was in a state of panic. “He said that his colleagues in the industry were worried about the business being bad. I asked him how business was for him and his business was thriving. I believe those business owners who have differentiated business models and are focused on solving client problems will and are doing well. Those who are copying business models and replicating others reactions are struggling.” While keeping a tab on the market scenario is important, different businesses react differently in similar situations. There are several tools online for entrepreneurs to measure where one is standing. Neeru strongly recommends using those tools to understand where is the gap and how to fill it. A lot of the times businessmen work where there is no problem, conveniently ignoring the grey areas. According to Priscilla too, opportunities are always available. They may just be disguised hence seem unavailable. “Today operating in an environment that is changing rapidly requires


STRATEGY

Kapil Dasani Founder & Head, Dasani Connoisseur adaptability, action and ability to transforming challenges into opportunities. It would be only fair to say that businesses are finding new ways of operating in a constantly evolving environment,” she adds.

Understand your pain points “Major contributors to cashflow issues are increasing credit terms, high risk of defaulters and stringent bank policies,” says Priscilla. One needs to identify which one of these are applicable to him. Could be one, could be all or could be none. But majorly since entrepreneurs are facing cash flow issues, Priscilla recommends a simple strategy - keep your A list clients with you. “Smart and process oriented businesses are now wise in building synergies and focussing on profits first approach keeping the back bone of consistent customer service towards new customers and retaining current A grade clients,” she says. International experts too note that it is difficult to make a new client than to retain an existing one. So efforts should be made to retain existing clients by understanding what their pain points are and providing them suitable solutions without compromising on quality. Neeru, however, takes this a step further urging businesses to be smart with their client choices. “Businesses

need to focus on clear differentiated client segments, and get very clear on solving their clients problems. Serving everyone with everything will not help. Focus on those clients who are committed to their business, and get very clear on how you help them grow their business (if its b2b) or get clear on what problem you product or service solves for them. Also business owners need to learn to say NO to those clients who they know will not pay or who will be a nightmare to deal with. You need to get clear on who you want to work with (clients who will pay) and make space in your business for these clients. Its ok to say NO to potential clients if they are not aligned with your business and ethics.”

Use a differentiated business model As said by Brad Sugars: “If things go wrong in your organisation, people blame people.” However, it is the systems that run the organisation and people run systems. So systemising 80% of your businesses and leaving room for 20% of humanising the workplace does the trick. Moreover, most industries today seem to be filled with people doing similar things, and all bent on proving to their clients that they are different. “Most industries are ‘red oceans’ with everyone doing the same thing, in the same way. The challenge is to really dig deep and find a differentiated business model – a blue ocean – where you’re solving genuine client problems in a unique way,” says Neeru. Often this is what most businesses ignore and spend more time working ‘in the business’ than ‘on the business’. For businesses to thrive, there needs to be constant evolution. Priscilla notes: “Being in the right place at the right time is important and building relationships in this fast paced world is now prime in todays world. Budding entreprenuers are using technology to their advantage, mid size and larger sectors are focusing on measures to increase cashflow thereby overcoming endemic shortage of working capital.”

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Hiring an expert when needed “Most men think that they can solve all problems themselves,” says Kapil. “And that’s where the problem is.” Sometimes businessmen get so involved in their business that they don’t watch it from outside. To see a business from an egalitarian is an expert’s job and SMB owners should use them as and when required. One of Neeru’s clients Rishi Chawla says: “We used to lack a structured way of operation so we wanted someone to streamline the same for us. We have definitely benefitted as it has given us room to think and act on future growth. For instance we had one of goal to have new partners in business and we have now achieved with two partners on board.” In conclusion, while the markets are volatile, change is inevitable and there is always something good in all situations. Using technology to one’s benefit and external help, one can definitely transform their business into a thriving one. “I think the main point here is “reacting”. Many businesses are reacting to what they see in the economy. The situation requires a response – stop, pause, think, re-strategize and action,” says Neeru.

Neeru Sharma Executive Coach & MD, Marya Leadership Academy

October 2019 / SMARTSMB


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ADVERTISING

With the rapid advancement in technology, the advertising industry has witnessed several upheavals. How viable, then, are traditional platforms like newspapers, flyers and billboards in today’s tech savvy world? Has digital media overtaken traditional media or there is still some hope for survival? SmartSMB explores. By Diksha Vohra motions of launches.

Aparna Sharma Founder, Prodigi Connect

At 6am daily I would hear a bang outside my house. It would be the newspaper. About a decade ago, the tradition was that every member in the household would read the newspaper to find out what’s new in the region. Alongside the news stories, we’d also glance over the ads for sales or proSMARTSMB / October 2019

new

Today, however, the scenario has changed. We’re all consuming news on our smartphones which is targeted to our interests. Hence, we only see promotions of products we’d potentially be interested in as most softwares gauge our tastes and preferences even without manually entering any information. That’s how much the world of advertising has changed. While, unlike before, there are new mediums to advertise products, the messaging needs to be very precise, medium needs to be carefully chosen based on the target audience and advertisers have a bigger challenge to communicate as much information as they can without sounding boring while making the significant interesting. “There is an evolution from USP driven brands to purpose driven brands,” says Prince Arora, Managing Director of Shell Advertising. “This is primarily a

result of commoditisation across categories where brands are struggling to find differentiation. Therefore, brands are dialing into a culture to find a meaningful purpose in order to create a role in people's lives.” Since competition both locally and internationally has increased with many startups who could previously not afford to setup large scale operations are now selling products online, brands have begun to play on a purpose driven strategy. Moreover, with technological developments in the last few years, the key message delivered needs to be different across different platforms to impact people differently. Consumers are now in control of the media they consume and how they consume it. “Right from news to entertainment, socializing to e-commerce, the digital world has become the go-to platform and an inseparable part of the consumers' life. Hence 'Content has become the new king' and 'Numbers Men & Women are the new king makers’,” says Prince. Sajith Ansar, founder and CEO of Idea Spice Advertising seconds Prince saying: “Influencers on social media are becoming stronger marketing resources and more and media spend is planned around influencers. Smaller nano influencers and digital reviews and ratings are now as important too.” In-fact, this has led to a dramatic shift in the advertising sector. We are witnessing a ‘Convergence of Creativity’. Where on one hand brands are running promotions online across different mediums, people are highly depending on the opinion’s of influencers or social media personalities for prod-


ADVERTISING

uct/service purchase. Hence brands, who’re not tapping into the digital world are surely missing out on a lot. However, one of the biggest myths surrounding the field of advertising is that going digital is the only way to promote your products. The fact is that there are different strokes for different folks. “The two (digital and print media) are used for very different purposes,” says Aparna Sharma, Founder of Prodigi Connect. “Print media such as billboards, newspaper advertisements and flyers are great for brands with lower product turnover- such as cars, real estate, single product companies (like ketchup, butter, milk, etc.). These products need people to recall them as their 'trusted' brand partners- that's why these brands advertise their products on a large scale in places where the commuters could witness them everyday.” Smaller products which launch new product lines more often such as cosmetics, skincare and food items rely more on impulse purchases, which can easily be achieved through social media. “This is to say that of course, bigger brands can also use digital media- only to establish their brands, though, not to make sales,” she adds. The level of confidence that is required for bigger purchases is quite difficult to achieve with social media promotions alone.

Sajith Ansar Founder and CEO, Idea Spice Advertising

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For these brands, traditional mediums used innovatively work best. According to Sajith: “Social sharing platforms, websites and industry specific digital platforms also assist marketing. Higher value luxury brand, real estate brands and banks will still use outdoor media and airport advertising to enhance their brand image. This however has to work in tandem with a digital strategy. As consumers attention span rapidly reduces and recall value diminish, brand engagement is key and the emotional tug is critical for brands.” Sajith also feels that while traditional mediums are declining, where they are combined smartly with new mediums on digital platforms and IOT, they become viable. “Unique billboards that are intelligent and combine a hashtag or a movement now help brands grow their visibility. The mediums used only for brand visibility without a concept or working hand in hand with the digital mediums are failing and the ad revenue doesn't fetch ROI for brands,” he adds. But these changes have put a lot of pressure on advertisers who’re pushed to constantly come up with out of the box concepts to retain clients. “The agencies now have a better ability to collect and analyse real-time data and pursue a segmented approach to

Prince Arora Managing Director, Shell Advertising

communication rather that 'one creative fits all' approach,” says Prince. “So now, it's no longer about one creative expression based on a strong consumer-insight that agencies look at but rather more personalized communication targeting different segments and addressing their specific needs and challenges. This helps drive greater customer satisfaction, higher brand traction and better returns.” As time progresses, advertisers also have to keep Virtual Reality, augmented reality, IOT in mind before creating something. In a way, this pushes advertisers to create more and be on their toes, it brings up a question whether all these efforts are actually worth it in terms of finance? Considering markets are globally converging and majority of the SMB brands don’t have exorbitant budgets, advertisers will have to be careful with understanding their creative delivery options and need to diversify their offerings to make sure every sector is tackled differently. October 2019 / SMARTSMB


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TALKPOINT

Enhancing the transition to cloud Mansoor Sarwar, Regional Technical Director at Sage Middle East elaborates on digital transformation trends and the new solution Sage 300 People What are some tech adoption trends by SMBs and enterprise businesses in this region? Businesses are experimenting with technologies such as robotics, artificial intelligence (AI), augmented and virtual reality, and the Internet of Things to drive innovation and boost the customer experience. The adoption of cloud business management solutions is another major trend for businesses in this region, as more enterprises recognise that clunky legacy systems are not agile enough to keep up with digital trends. Small and medium businesses are more frugal with their spending, but we are seeing a growing number of them moving to Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) for their accounting and payroll requirements to rid their employees of unnecessary admin.

Has digital transformation been a driver of new technology adoption in the region? While the trends for technology adoption might differ depending on the size of the business, digital transformation remains at the core. We see digital transformation as a driver for businesses to stay relevant and competitive in their respective industries. Countries in the region are at different stages of digital transformation with mounting pressure to catch up to international standards. The transition to digitalization has SMARTSMB / October 2019

Mansoor Sarwar Regional Technical Director at Sage Middle East

played a key role in driving technology investment in the Middle East and Africa. IDC estimates that this investment will hit $213 billion (Dh781.71 billion) this year compared to $208 billion in 2018. Digital transformation spend is expected to cross $25 billion this year as more organizations experiment with emerging technologies.

ed and integrated payroll, HR and employee self-service solution ideal for medium and large enterprises in all industries. Featuring airtight security and powerful analytics and reporting tools, Sage 300 offers an Arabic language interface and full compliance with Saudi Arabia’s latest tax laws and regulations.

Tell us about your recent launch of Sage 300 People. How does it help enhance HR function?

Designed to enable business success, Sage 300 People is best suited for enterprises that seek to achieve a transition from legacy systems and co-exist or integrate seamlessly alongside an existing business management solution or other applications.

In addition to our efforts to introduce customers to the benefits of cloud-connected business management solutions, we have also recognized the importance of localizing our products to fit the local culture and government regulations. In September, we launched Sage 300 People in Saudi Arabia and in the UAE. Sage 300 People is a cloud-connect-

The HR function must adapt to the evolving world of work by using cloud technologies to increase efficiencies, ensure compliance, enhance performance and improve employee engagement. The right HRM and payroll solution is a foundation for a productive, data-driven HR function that can help the business to grow and its people to flourish.


48

COLUMN

DATA AVAILABILITY: THE DIGITAL FOUNDATION FOR A MORE INTELLIGENT BUSINESS Organizations must implement effective intelligent data management strategies that help them being able to access the right data at the right time and recover it when it’s lost or damaged, writes Dave Russell, VP of Enterprise Strategy, Veeam In today’s rapidly changing digital landscape, organizations are increasingly facing the need to implement strategies to manage and protect their data, especially when the data growth rate is not slowing down. IDC reported that companies will have 175 ZB of data by 2025, which combined with a highly competitive environment can be the recipe for a business disaster. Building strong digital foundations that focus on data availability will be vital to the future of every organization. They must implement effective intelligent data management strategies that help them being able to access the right data at the right time and recover it when it’s lost or damaged.

Building A More Intelligent Business Veeam’s 2019 Cloud Data Management report, found that most organizations (73%) are unable to meet users’ demands for uninterrupted access to applications and data, but almost half of reported individuals (44%) see data management as critical to their businesses’ success in the next two years. For data management strategies to be successful, enterprises need to follow four core components that not only encompass the technology but the people and the data-culture of the organization.

Component 1: The rise of the cloud Cloud Data Management, an intrinsic part of Intelligent Data Management, enables data availability across the business. Whether it is a hybrid, a cloud or a multicloud approach, leaders recognize the advantages, from reliability and flexibility to competitive costs and data security, the cloud allows them to manage and locate data

SMARTSMB / October 2019

where it will deliver the most value. An organization can aggregate large amounts of data but if it doesn’t have an efficient way to store it and make it accessible to business users, it will turn against them. Having data that is stored through a reliable and manageable process directly correlates to corporate stability and improves the ability to forecast and make better informed decisions.

Component 2: Your capabilities matter Business leaders reported that they will spend an average of $41 million on deploying technologies to help transform their operations within the next 12 months. However, for technologies such as backup, disaster recovery and data protection to have the expected business impact, organizations need to invest in their talent, giving them the tools and training to nurture their skills to successfully manage new programs. The digital journey’s outcome is intrinsically related to the level of technological capabilities of its userbase. Upskilling employee’s digital skills will be vital to the success of the company and should not be overlooked when allocating company resources. Component 3: Make it a data-driven culture A corporate culture should be welcoming to innovation, support the introduction of new technologies and speed the process of digital transformation. As companies move through this transformation, their culture needs to become more data-driven. Businesses already produce huge amounts of data, but it is not about just gathering data anymore, it has to be managed,

Dave Russell VP of Enterprise Strategy, Veeam

analyzed and used to inform faster and make more effective decisions. And it is in the hands of the C-level to convey this way of thinking, from top to bottom leadership should demonstrate the business relation and how technology supports the organization to uncover insights for better services and products.

Component 4: Confidence is key The level of confidence in an organization’s capability to meet digital challenges naturally increases as the businesses progress on their digital transformation. However, the potential risks increase as well. Addressing the first three components not only gives piece of mind internally but to customers and partners. Investing in robust, scalable and flexible solutions to address mission-critical issues, while allocating resources to improve internal skills will lay that much needed strong digital foundation. Maximizing the value of data, has never been as important as today, and as organizations take a leap onto their digital journey and work to become more intelligent businesses, they need to rely and trust their data will be available whenever is needed. Technology, people, new capabilities and a data-driven mentality will help take the steps towards enabling the next-generation of industry disruptors and innovators.


COLUMN

49

LEVERAGING NETWORK MONITORING SOLUTIONS While SMBs can choose between on-premises and cloud-based network monitoring tools, they should evaluate both pros and cons to make the right choice, writes Santhi Santhanakrishnan, Product Analyst, Site 24x7

Santhi Santhanakrishnan Product Analyst, Site 24x7

As businesses grow, so do their networks and the challenges that come along with managing them. For small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), however, tight budgets and fewer resources make it even more challenging for network admins to manually track and monitor all network elements. When network loads increase and issues begin to pile up, it starts to affect other IT elements, taking a toll on the entire business. SMBs can use a comprehensive network management solution to ensure seamless functioning of not only IT, but the business as a whole. Without a proper tool in place, even simple issues like poor internet connectivity and network outages can bring down a service. Here are four common network challenges SMBs face today and ways to leverage a network management solution to address them.

1. Security — the biggest question Security, without a doubt, remains the biggest challenge in any IT environment. According to a recent cybersecurity report by Ponemon Institute, 58 percent of the surveyed SMBs experienced a cyberattack and data breach in 2018. 74 percent of SMBs list resource limitations as the main barrier when it comes to IT security. However, 55 percent of respondents blame their tight budget. In spite of cost and resource limitations, SMBs continue to strive to keep up with global security standards. A network strategy with real-time per-

formance monitoring of all network devices, anomaly detection, and an instant alerting mechanism will help keep peripheral security threats in check. Keeping the budget constraints in mind, SMBs can adopt the freemium version of all-in-one monitoring solutions.

2. Visual documentation of the expanding network and its components With network infrastructures growing at such a quick pace, keeping track of older devices can be particularly challenging. Just one device left unaccounted for can have negative ramifications that can ripple throughout the entire IT setup. Moreover, as the network expands, manually tracing out interconnections between devices becomes a Herculean task. Without a proper map, it's nearly impossible to understand the network hierarchy. For example, if a switch loses its connection, without a network map, the network admin would first have to find the router to which the switch is connected, and then troubleshoot before fixing it, which can waste precious time. This is why a proper IP-based monitoring solution with a complete network map is essential to keep track of all resources.

3. Increased latency and packet loss Annual global IP traffic will reach 4.8 ZB per year by 2022 according to research by Cisco. Higher volumes of traffic might present problems like increased latency and packet loss. Increases in latency affect the clarity of Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) calls, while packet loss can lead to data leaks. No one likes a slow network. Slow networks negatively affect the end-user experience and lead to loss of potential business. A network monitoring tool with an

option to set thresholds on various performance metrics and send timely alerts could be a viable solution to track issues long before they affect the user experience.

4. Network congestion Every network is prone to congestion at some point of time. Network congestion can be result of bandwidth hogs, higher volume of devices, incompatible hardware and more. An increase in incoming traffic isn't always a good sign. This could also be an indication of a distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack. DDoS attacks are on the rise; since last year Q4, DDoS attacks have increased by 84 percent according to Kaspersky's 2019 Q1 report. DDoS attacks can result in immediate and direct financial loss when potential customers are unable to reach the services while more longterm effects can include negative publicity and damage to brand name. Monitoring network bandwidth and traffic can keep networks secure from volumetric attacks. While SMBs can choose between on-premises and cloud-based network monitoring tools, they should evaluate both pros and cons to make the right choice, keeping scalability in mind. As SMBs expand with multiple branch offices, spending on new monitoring resources and maintaining a private connection in each location might neither be feasible nor easy on their pockets. Cloud-based solutions bring in easier monitoring tool deployment architecture making it easy to access monitoring information on the move. Beyond these day-to-day challenges, it's important for SMBs to build a sustainable and scalable network that they can manage from a single console. This is why, for growing networks, a comprehensive and customizable monitoring solution is less a perk and more a requirement. October 2019 / SMARTSMB


50

IT DIRECTORY

DCG MEMBERS LIST Company Name

Head of Company

Name of Company Description Sales Person

Contact

E-mail

04-3511069 055-4725980

shivacom@eim.ae

SHIVA COMPUTER LLC

NARESH KUMAR PERWANI

YUSUF

Incorporated in June 2004 with the mission to provide innovative networking Product & sales . The Company distributes and sells an array of world leading vendors such as D-Link, Linksys, TpLink, Net gear, Cisco, Belkin, Hewlett-Packard, Enginus, Fujitsu, Symantec, Dell, LG, Samsung, Symantec, Western Digital and many more. Shiva Computers is one of the biggest distributor of SANATEK products in the world. The Company supply chain management and just-in-time delivery benefits customers by increasing stock turns, lowering inventory holding which means better cash flow and lower risk of price erosion in stock.

SIMAL TECHNOLOGIES LLC

RABIYA BI

RABIYA BI

Simal Technologies act as a distributor for computer peripherals renowned brands, specialized in memory module & SSD

04-3528289 050-5533604

rabiya.bi@twinmos.com

SMART STATION TECH TRADING LLC

ANAND S M

UTSAV PATEL

Mini PC, Thin Client PC, Educational laptop and tablets, Tax Accounting Software, POS software for retail and restaurant, Interactive touch panel, AV, etc.. Total IT Hardware & Software solution provider.

04-3550990 050-7701017

anand@smartstationme.com

SOFT MAGIC SYSTEM LLC [MERLIN]

ROHIT BACHANI

ROHIT BACHANI

Established in 1998, Dubai-based Merlin Digital is a consumer electronics company with a global presence. We have deeply rooted ourselves as UAE's most preferred consumer electronics brand.

04-3806660 055-4705876

rohitb@merlin-me.com

SPRINT TECHNOLOGY LLC

MUSTAFA A. VAKHARIYA

MUSTAFA A. VAKHARIYA

IT Network & Security Products

04-3540421 050-9325425

mustafavak@sprintsc.net

06-5572181 056-9660340

mouqeet@stepstrade.com

STEP TRADE FZE

MOUQEET A

MOUQEET A

Steps Trade FZE is a wholesale distributor of Computer / Electronic / Office/ I.T related products. We are based in Sharjah Airport International Free Zone U.A.E, a well known business Hub of World. We are providing wide range of products at competitive prices to our customers, which mainly include Wholesalers/ Dealers / Resellers located throughout the Middle East, Africa and C.I.S Countries.

SUNWIN TRADING FZCO

SUNIL UDHANI

ASHWNINI UDHANI

Bulk sellers of Samsung Mobiles , Apple Airpods & Motorola Mobiles

04-2280800 050-3481734

ashu@sunwin.ae

SUPERTECH COMPUTER TRADING LLC

FAISAL KOTHIKKAL

FAISAL K

Leading reseller with 3 + outlets located in the heart of Dubai.

04-3275554 050-3248695

faisal@supertechuae.com

TECH CARE SOLUTIONS LLC

ASHOK UTTAM

ARHSD MUHMOUD

ICT Solution providers for Enterprise, SMB and Government entities. Authorized Distributor of OZAAS Products.

04-3555195 050-7860555

ash@techcareme.com

TECHBAY ELECTRONICS LLC

SAJJAD VERSIANI

ABDUL SAMAD

Wholeselling major brand laptops apple/hp/dell/lenovo/acer

04-3513955 055-2311314

samad@techtronisdubai. com

TECHCOM INTERNATIONAL COM. LLC

VINAYKUMAR KEDIA

PRAMOD KUMAR

Techcom IT Hardware , Major Brands Hardware

04-3540358 055-1049522

sales@techcomuae.com

TECHMICRO FZCO

SHAHOOD KHAN

SHAHOOD KHAN

Techmicro is a specialist retail distributor in the Middle East dealing in high growth product categories such Wireless and life style products

04-3922205 050-6564201

shahoodk@techmicro.ae

TEKNODOME FZE

SAKET GAURAV

ANIL NAUTIYAL

TeknoDome has established its presence with offices in UAE, India, Kazakhstan & Kyrgyzstan and has become one of the leading suppliers of branded Consumer Electronics products.

04-8876442 055-4690458

ajay@teknodome.ae

THAKRAL GULF FZE

DR M S REHSI

HARISH JASHNANI

Bringing worldwide expertise and experience to the Information Technology market in the UAE. Thakral IT Services prides itself on providing a world class outsourced IT and communications service.

04-8817066 050-4293545

harish.jasnani@thakralgulf. com

TIGER GENERAL TRADING LLC

RAJESH L KESHWANI

HARISH ISRANI

Leading importer and exporter of IT products also dealing in wholesale and retail. Also having an accessorries manufacturing brand called "LIGHT WAVE"

04-3529955 055-2201426

isranih@gmail.com

TIME DIMENSION TRADING LLC

KHALED ALASWADI

GONELY FLORCE

ICT Solution provider - Security, Transmission Equipments, Telephony and PBX, GSM Adapters, Wireless and Billing, Industrial Switches, Radio system & Analytics.

04-3464466 055-4107055

office@tdme.net

TOSHIBA GULF FZE

SANTOSH VERGHESE

Toshiba Gulf FZE and Toshiba Group companies are bringing our matchless capabilities to the Middle East and Africa, and are helping realize a sustainable and safe society. We look forward to serving you.

04-8817789 050-5502138

santosh@toshiba-tgfz.ae

TPV TECHNOLOGY GULF DMCC

CAROL ANNE DIAS

SAMEH GAMEL

TPV is an internationally-renowned monitor and TV manufacturer. It has been listed on both the Hong Kong and Singapore stock exchanges since 1999. TPV serves as an original design manufacturer for some of the best-known TV and PC brands and also distributes its own brands ‘‘AOC’’, ‘‘Envision’’ and licensed Philips monitors, TVs, mobile phones and tablets products in most regions worldwide.

04-4327960 050-6501634

carolanne.dias@tpv-tech. com

TRANSWORLD COMPUTER TECHNOLOGY LLC

DEEPAK DIALANI

BHARAT KEWLANI

Importers,Stockists and exporters for IT,Consumer Electronics,AI &IOT

04-3934111 050-6576939

bharat@transupgrade.com

SMARTSMB / October 2019


Synergising the Mind & Technology Economy The biggest tech show in the Middle East, North Africa & South Asia

#GITEX2019

gitex.com

#gitexfuturestars

futurestarsSales@dwtc.com


52

TECH WATCH

NUCLIAS CLOUD Nuclias Cloud is D-Link’s 100% Cloud network management solution for Small-to-Medium Sized Businesses (SMBs) with multiple network deployment sites and limited IT resources such as hotels, restaurants, chainstores, and campuses. It is a readymade and independently-maintained solution that allows SMBs to manage and monitor their own networks remotely, or outsource this work to a Managed Service Provider (MSPs), featuring zero-touch installation, zero-cost platform upgrades and security fixes, unlimited scalability, 99.9% reliability, and a very light footprint.

DBA-1210P Nuclias Cloud Wave 2 Access Point The DBA-1210P Nuclias Cloud Wave 2 Access Point is a best-in-class indoor access point designed specifically for enterprise environments. With new generation 802.11ac dual-band concurrent 2.4 GHz and 5.0 GHz radios, the DBA-1210P offers high combined data rates to wireless clients, allowing for lightning-fast access to bandwidth intensive applications such as data, voice, and video. It has up to 1300 Mbps data transfer with 2x2 MU-MIMO and two spatial streams, beam forming and load balancing.

DBA-1510P Nuclias Cloud Access Point The DBA-1510P Nuclias Cloud Access Point is IEEE 802.11ac-capable with up to 1750 Mbps data throughput, 3x3 MIMO with two spatial streams, and supports MU-MIMO, beamforming and load balancing, evenly distributing wireless traffic to optimize SMB network efficiency

DBS-2000 Nuclias Cloud Switch Nuclias Cloud Switches include a ro-

bust set of Layer 2 and Layer 2+ features designed to support the most demanding applications. Their extensive range meets the networking needs of businesses of all sizes with arange of port configurations from 10-52 ports. L2/L2+ features help optimize and improve network efficiency. The switches have optional PoE models that support PoE/PoE+ with high PoE power budgets. Combo fiber ports provide additionalflexibility on choice and distance over which these switches can be connected.

Highlights: • Nuclias Cloud covers a range of wireless access points and managed network switches that are all controlled through a single, centralized web interface, allowing monitoring and management of the entire network and its devices from a single platform anywhere, anytime. • It allows any organization with any level of IT resources to quickly and easily set up, configure, monitor,troubleshoot, and manage their network deployment and/or multi-site deployment remotely. • Nuclias Cloud is built from a tried and trusted Cloud architecture that currently supportsmore than half a million devices. • It features high availability, with 24/7 automated failure detection, multilingual access, cross-time-zone support for rapid escalation (involving multiple local technical support teams), a 99.9% uptime Service-Level Agreement (SLA),and an experienced operations team that’s managed more than five million Cloud accounts.

WD’S 5TB MY PASSPORT HARD DRIVE The award-winning My Passport line now features the slimmest 5TB portable hard drive in the WD brand portfolio at just 0.75 in (19.15mm) thick. The stylish design fits in the palm of a hand, yet has space to store, organize and share a tremendous amount of photos, videos, music and documents. The stylish new drives feature a fresh look and are available in capacities up to 5TB. The My Passport drive comes in cool new colors including Black, Blue and Red, while the My Passport for Mac drive is Midnight Blue. The My Passport drive is formatted for Windows 10 and will feature a USB 3.0 connector that is compatible with USB 2.0. The My Passport for Mac drive is formatted for macOS Mojave and will have a USB-C connector to deliver plug-and-play storage out of the box.

Highlights: • The new My Passport has been redesigned to feature a convenient, slim form factor and is available in a range of vibrant colors. • The My Passport drive comes equipped with WD Backup software that can be set to run automatically to your schedule. Just pick the time and frequency to back up important files from your system onto your My Passport drive. • Keep your digital life's contents secure with My Passport password protection and built-in 256-bit AES hardware encryption. Just activate password protection and set your own

SMARTSMB / October 2019


TECH WATCH

personalized password using WD Discovery. • My Passport portable storage is ready right out of the box including all necessary cables. And with SuperSpeed USB, you can quickly start backing up everything in your life and keep driving forward. • Included WD Discovery software1 lets you connect to popular social media and cloud storage services like Facebook, Dropbox, and Google Drive. Seamlessly import, organize, and share your photos, videos, and docs to the My Passport drive to backup your online social life.2 WD Discovery can also manage your drive through WD Drive Utilities. • It comes with a 3-year limited warranty.

53

KODAK ALARIS’S SCAN STATION 730EX PLUS Kodak Alaris is launching a new wave of network-connected scanning solutions aimed at tackling the most difficult pain points organizations face when onboarding information into line-of-business applications. The Alaris INfuse Smart Connected Scanning Solution and the Kodak Scan Station 730EX Plus Scanner automate business processes by seamlessly connecting document capture to existing business systems and the cloud.

curely automates document capture and allows for fully finished files to be scanned directly into business processes.

INfuse AX Scanner is a smart network scanning device requiring no PC or software/drivers that accurately and securely transfers data, metadata and finished image files directly into a business process. INfuse offers enterprise-level security, including a separate data path and control path to isolate confidential content for secure transmission. The INfuse AX Scanner can be configured to carry the partner’s branding on its display.

• The new Scan Station is ideal for capture and advanced processing such as OCR, all done in the scanner.

Highlights: • The Scan Station 730EX Plus is an integrated network scanner that se-

• Like INfuse, the Scan Station is a network-connected solution that sits at the edge of workflows and operates in a wide range of customer environments. It offers embedded Windows 10 IOT Enterprise Operating System and network domain authentication for secure log-in.

• It is specifically designed for integrators to create custom solutions. Partner applications can be loaded on the scanner, extending the capture solution to address the unique needs of the partner and end user. • The Scan Station is well-suited for customer-facing environments where MFPs, peripheral scanners and PCs don’t make operational or financial sense.

October 2019 / SMARTSMB


54

MARKET MIRROR

5.8 BILLION ENTERPRISE AND AUTOMOTIVE IOT ENDPOINTS LIKELY BY 2020 Gartner, Inc. forecasts that the enterprise and automotive Internet of Things (IoT) market* will grow to 5.8 billion endpoints in 2020, a 21% increase from 2019. By the end of 2019, 4.8 billion endpoints are expected to be in use, up 21.5% from 2018. Utilities will be the highest user of IoT endpoints, totaling 1.17 billion endpoints in 2019, and increasing 17% in 2020 to reach 1.37 billion endpoints. “Electricity smart metering, both residential and commercial will boost the adoption of IoT among utilities,” said Peter Middleton, senior research director at Gartner. “Physical security, where building intruder detection and indoor surveillance use cases will drive volume, will be the second largest user of IoT endpoints in 2020.” Building automation, driven by connected lighting devices, will be the segment with the largest growth rate in 2020 (42%), followed by automotive and healthcare, which are forecast to grow 31% and 29% in 2020, respectively (see Table 1). In healthcare, chronic condition monitoring will drive the most IoT endpoints, while in automotive, cars with embedded IoT connectivity will be supplemented by a range of add-on devices to accomplish specific tasks, such as fleet management.

Top Use-Case Opportunities Vary by Region Similar to 2019, residential electricity smart metering, which can be used for more accurate metering and billing in the home, will be the top use case for Greater China and Western Europe in 2020, and will represent 26% and 12% of total IoT endpoints, respectively. North America, in comparison, will see its highest IoT endpoint adoption in building intruder detection, such as door and window sensors, which will represent 8% of total IoT endpoints. SMARTSMB / October 2019

North America and Greater China Have the Biggest Market for Endpoint Electronics Revenue

tronics complexity and manufacturers implementing connectivity in a greater percentage of their vehicle production moving forward. While printers and photocopiers will contribute significant spending in 2020, the market will decline slowly and other use cases such as indoor surveillance will rise as governments focus on public safety.

In 2020, revenue from endpoint electronics will total $389 billion globally and will be concentrated over three regions: North America, Greater China and Western Europe. These three regions will represent 75% of the overall endpoint electronics revenue. North America will record $120 billion, Great China will achieve $91 billion and Western Europe will come in third totaling $82 billion in 2020.

“Overall, end users will need to prepare to address an environment where the business units will increasingly buy IoT-enabled assets without policies for support, data ownership or integration into existing business applications,” said Alfonso Velosa, research vice president at Gartner. This will require the CIO’s team to start developing a policy and architecture-based approach to support business units’ objectives, while protecting the organization from data threats.

In 2020, the two use cases that will produce the most endpoint electronics revenue will be consumer connected cars and networkable printing and photocopying, totaling $72 billion and $38 billion, respectively. Connected cars will retain a significant portion of the total endpoint electronics spending resulting from increasing elec-

“Product managers will need to deliver but also to clearly and loudly communicate their IoT-based business value to specific verticals and their business processes, if they are to succeed in this crowded arena,” concluded Mr. Velosa.

IoT Endpoint Market by Segment, 2018-2020, Worldwide (Installed Base, Billions of Units) Segment

2018

2019

2020

Utilities

0.98

1.17

1.37

Government

0.4

0.53

0.7

Building Automation

0.23

0.31

0.44

Physical Security

0.83

0.95

1.09

Manufacturing & Natural Resources

0.33

0.4

0.49

Automotive

0.27

0.36

0.47

Healthcare Providers

0.21

0.28

0.36

Retail & Wholesale Trade

0.29

0.36

0.44

Information

0.37

0.37

0.37

Transportation

0.06

0.07

0.08

Total:

3.96

4.81

5.81

"Source: Gartner (August 2019)"


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Smart SMB October 2019  

Smart SMB is a magazine for the mid-market IT and Business heads in MEA

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Smart SMB is a magazine for the mid-market IT and Business heads in MEA

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