Al Falah returns to Middle East with new mission

Former Tech Data Middle East boss Adnan Al Falah is on the verge of making a dramatic comeback to the regional IT channel by launching a venture firm focused on local distributors in the UAE, Saudi and Bahrain. Al Falah — who has named the entity Miracle Communications — has already secured the commitment of unnamed investment partners to work with the company.

  • E-Mail
By  Andrew Seymour Published  November 18, 2006

Former Tech Data Middle East boss Adnan Al Falah is on the verge of making a dramatic comeback to the regional IT channel by launching a venture firm focused on local distributors in the UAE, Saudi and Bahrain. Al Falah — who has named the entity Miracle Communications — has already secured the commitment of unnamed investment partners to work with the company. After leaving Tech Data back in the summer, Al Falah had been expected to return to the region by accepting a senior management role at another wholesaler. However, his brief spell away from the day-to-day demands of broadline distribution has persuaded him that his future lies in helping promising national distributors fulfil their potential. Miracle insists its objective is to identify local distributors that possess a clear ambition to build a pure two-tier distribution model driven by direct relationships with vendors and an emphasis on channel development. He said: “Having been in distribution for such a long time in the UK and having spent six years of my life in Dubai working at Tech Data I felt there was room to do something different. My interest is not to reinvent the wheel or tell the people who are doing it today that they are wrong or right. But I believe there is a gap to create really strong national distributors. My interest is in people — finding companies with young talent and actually helping them to strengthen their position in their own territory. It is not about finding a company which is operating in one country and then who tries to be regional, but finds that everything goes haywire and shrinks again because the pressures are coming at it from all different directions.” Al Falah stresses that his mission is not to “smother” organisations with a one-size-fits-all approach, but to harness the potential of visionary local distribution companies in need of the support that will turn them into strong national organisations. “My idea is to really use my own know-how to help these companies behave as a distributor and focus on their own business in their chosen market - not to try and create a corporation with corporation overheads. We will take an active interest in them from a distance, keep them focused in their countries, create the right strategies and attract the right vendors to them. I think by doing that you create a regional environment, but with local execution.” He added: “If I can pick up two or three companies in one market, but focusing on different technologies and different aspects of distribution, that’s even better. That way, the people are creating good sound businesses. They do not have to go regional and then massage their sell-out data to convince the vendor they are actually doing the right thing.” Having established the investment vehicle needed to get the concept off the ground, Miracle claims it is preparing to announce a major distribution contract with a vendor in the Middle East that will start in the UAE and Saudi. “We are really trying to show that by having the right people and the right know-how you can actually go out and attract vendors. You don’t have to be a 20-year old company pretending to be regional to attract vendors. What I’m trying to demonstrate is that there is mileage in this concept and this idea,” commented Al Falah. Although Miracle will obtain stakes in companies in return for its investment, Al Falah claims the management teams of any organisation that it finances will still maintain complete responsibility for driving growth. “The name of the game is to give them the skills that they believe there is a gap for in their company and to give them the know-how that they need to strengthen their position in their country. We will work with the team to create the strategy and the brand. We will have a regional brand that these people will be part of but in the country they will be executing under their name.” While persuading distributors to relinquish a stake in their business clearly represents one major challenge that Miracle will face, it also has to sell the concept to manufacturers. Al Falah insists that initial discussions with unnamed vendors have been encouraging, however. “I’m trying to create some clarity in the distribution landscape,” he said. “I’m not trying to say I’m going to go out and do everything myself, but having spoken to a few vendors they all gave me a warm reception to the idea. This company can really help both the distribution companies and vendors. How many times have we heard vendors saying that a partner is not delivering? Quite often it’s because the vendor has bent them out of shape." "First of all I need to make sure that I have enough people and companies that I have taken under my wing or convinced that I have the right formula. Then we will create the right strategies for these companies to go and approach vendors for product rights in their market. Believe me, you will not be short of vendors looking for successful in-country distributors. There is no vendor out there that I will not be able to knock on their door and convince them to talk to me, never mind give me a contract,” he said.

Add a Comment

Your display name This field is mandatory

Your e-mail address This field is mandatory (Your e-mail address won't be published)

Security code