MDS teams up with Elsag

Mideast Data Systems (MDS) announces teaming agreement with Italian IT services giant and signs partnership with ISS

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By  Stuart Wilson Published  October 4, 2004

As part of an action-packed series of Gitex announcements, 300-strong IT group MDS UAE has confirmed a Middle East teaming agreement with Italian IT services company Elsag, part of the giant Finmeccanica group. “It is a teaming agreement whereby we will tackle certain projects together in the Middle East,” explains Sami Abi Esber, president at MDS UAE. “We met Elsag on our stand at Gitex last year and then bid together for a project in Lebanon. Elsag is introducing an Islamic banking solution, having already completed a project with a major bank in Saudi Arabia. We will work with Elsag in various vertical markets including utilities, transportation and banking,” he added. MDS UAE, a holding company comprising of 14 focused business units covering the entire IT spectrum from PC sales through to high-end systems integration and consulting services, is also highlighting its regional growth strategy. The planned opening of a new facility in Kuwait follows in the footsteps of recent office openings in Saudi Arabia, Yemen and Turkey. MDS UAE has also expanded the software portfolio it carries after finalising a tie-up with security software vendor Internet Security Systems (ISS). In addition, MDS UAE is showcasing new solutions from systems and security management NetIQ and storage software specialist Legato (part of storage giant EMC). “Working with ISS allows us to offer customers a total security solution,” says Esber. “We are developing services across our business units. MDS UAE is adding to its services by providing local call centre and helpdesk facilities for its customers in Abu Dhabi. We can offer an outsourced helpdesk to customers and provide maintenance services for their IT infrastructure.” MDS UAE offers customers complete implementation of enterprise software applications and works with major vendor partners including Microsoft. With sales up 20% year-on-year during 2004, Esber is convinced that the Middle East IT market remains well positioned for sustained growth. MDS UAE believes that the Middle East IT market will expand substantially in the years ahead as total spending increases. With one of the lowest IT spending rates per citizen in the world, coupled with room for further internet penetration in the region, MDS-UAE hopes that its regional network of offices, major vendor partners, alliance strategy and corporate structure will provide the foundation for sustained growth. “The IT spending per person in the Middle East is still just US$23 per person. In a country like the Czech Republic, the equivalent figure is US$231. You can see a massive difference in these figures,” says Esber. Gitex is providing MDS UAE with a prime opportunity to showcase its skills and talents to potential customers according to Esber: “We have been committed to Gitex since the very beginning. Being here shows our commitment to the market, the advances we have made and allows us to introduce our solutions to the market.”

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