Saudi IT market to increase twelve-fold by 2016!
The Saudi IT market, which is the largest in the Middle East totaled $1billion in 2012, and is expected to surpass $12.4 billion by 2016, according to International Data Corporation (IDC). IDC, the world’s premier IT and communication market intelligence brought together more than 150 of the top IT end users from across the Kingdom for the first day of its prestigious Saudi Arabia CIO Summit 2013, held at the InterContinental Jeddah. In his opening speech, IDC’s Vice President and Managing Director for the Middle East, Africa and Turkey, Jyoti Lalchandani, outlined the recent changes that have taken place in ICT spending patterns, ICT user requirements and transforming business models. Meanwhile, Frank Genes, senior vice president and chief analyst explained that the from 2013 to 2020, about 9 percent of new CIO investment in Saudi Arabia will focus on the 3rd Platform technologies and solutions-offerings that represent just 25 percent of today’s IT budget. He said “ Indeed, IDC believes at least 80 percent of the CIO’s strategic energy and investments must focus on strengthening the 3rd Platform capabilities of their departments, a sure-fire sign that the Saudi ICT market is making very real progress.” Jo So, vice president of sales for Huawei’s Middle East Enterprise Business explained how business can make more sense of their unstructured data and remain ahead of the game by implementing effective storage and processing strategies that specifically address the unique threats that target Big Data. Speaking to the Gazette, Hesham Abo El-Rejal, Vice President at Schneider Electric said “the event is an important part of our marketing strategy in the region. Through this summit we aim to strengthen our presence across the region by showcasing the latest product innovations and integrated solutions offered by Schneider Electric.” He noted that the main 5 key trends in the Data Center market today are, virtualization, cloud-computing, co-location emergence, increasing energy costs and environmental issues. “We have always been focusing on Data Center Usage Effectiveness, so that we can provide solutions combining energy efficiency and datacenter efficiency, in accordance with the current and future trend of the market,” he said. Dr.Jarallah Al Ghamdi, CIO of the Ministry of Education, presented a case study outlining the Ministry’s implementation of a sophisticated education management system that provide IT services for 33,000 schools and a government resources planning system that provides HR, finance, and SCM functions to all MOE departments and branches. Ronald Gilmore, global ITS coverage and industry sales leader at IBM detailed the anticipated rise of smart cities that have been specifically designed to collect data, analyze it, and use it to improve the quality of city life, be that by making the traffic flow more smoothly, helping the police increase public safety, or improving the provision of energy and healthcare. This followed by a session from Basil Ayass, regional marketing director at Dell, who discussed how progressiveness CIOs are looking to transform their traditional. IT business models into an IT as a service (ITaaS) model through which consumers of IT have greater transparency and choice of the services they consume. On the side of the summit, Asfar Zaidi, Principal Consultant at Huawei Enterprise Middle East reaffirmed how the growing Bring Your Own Device (BOYD) culture is empowering employees to do more on-the-go through secure access to corporate information at anytime, anywhere, from any device. “The fact is that many employees would prefer to use their personal mobile devices for work purposes, and some businesses are still being challenged to fully capitalize on this potential while keeping their corporate data secure,” said Zaidi. The IDC facts revealed that the demand for cloud services in MEA continue to increase and the Saudi cloud market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 49.7 percent and the UAE 43.7 per cent during the period 2012-2016. It also stated that the big 4 regional IT market-Saudi Arabia, South Africa, the UAE and Turkey which accounts over 60 percent of the total IT spending or about $37 billion.
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