FIC takes Libyan education into the PC age with gigantic deal

US Vendor First International Computer-Everex has chosen this week’s Gitex to announce a massive new deal with the Libyan government. Through this agreement the firm will supply 20,000 PCs, worth US$11m, to primary and secondary schools across the country.

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By  Simon Duddy Published  September 27, 2005

US Vendor First International Computer-Everex has chosen this week’s Gitex to announce a massive new deal with the Libyan government. Through this agreement the firm will supply 20,000 PCs, worth US$11m, to primary and secondary schools across the country. “We have been working on this for the last four months, everybody was bidding on it, all of the major computer companies, all the manufacturers from Taiwan and all of the A-brands,” says FIC managing director Hassan Ashi. “With this account we will be supporting them with more than just hardware, we may also help them expand or build an assembly line,” he adds. The desktop computers will be equipped with cutting-edge 945G chipsets, 3GHz Intel Pentium 4 processors, 512MB of DDR memory, 200GB hard drives and combo DVD/CD drives. The project will be delivered by sea freight in three separate shipments between November and December this year. The deal is the first struck between FIC and the Libyan government since an 18-year American embargo was lifted from the country in 2004. North Africa is a strategic territory for FIC, but this is one of the largest contracts the company has won in the region to date. “We have operations in Tunisia, Algeria and Morocco. In Tunisia we try to win around half of the education tenders in the country, which is usually around 8,000 units a year,” says Ashi. The deal was confirmed and signed on Tuesday, September 13. FIC’s contract is the first phase in a planned project by the Libyan government to introduce 130,000 PCs to its people. FIC hopes to supply another 100,000 PCs to Libya over the next two years. Ashi continues, “This is a strategic account for FIC, we have known them since the 1980s, although Libya is a virgin market after the lifting of the embargo. Our relationship with Electronic General Company (EGC) is very strong and we feel that was key in helping us to beat off the considerable international competition for this contract.” FIC will enhance PC assembly lines in Libya by adding cuttings edge equipment including kit taking care of testing.

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