Crème de la crème

The Network Middle East Innovation Awards took place at Dubai’s Shangri-La hotel on June 12, 2005 and rewarded excellence among the vendors and end users involved in the Middle East region’s IT and Networking industry.

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By  Simon Duddy Published  June 26, 2005

|~|winners_group_m.jpg|~|Class of 2005 - The Network Middle East Innovation Awards honoured a broad range of end users and vendors for their excellent performance in the networking realm.|~|The Network Middle East Innovation Awards rewards the creative spirit that drives the networking industry. It honours network professionals who have demonstrated excellence in their implementations and identifies innovation in technology. The aim of the Awards is to emphasise innovation rather than simply market share. We are looking beyond the sales and marketing message to unearth the gems that are quietly powering away and providing value to the enterprise in the region. At the 2005 inaugural awards ceremony, six end users and ten vendors and systems integrators have been honoured for excellence in the networking arena. From the innovative wireless network set up by the Aspire Sports Academy to the staunch work put in by Avaya in Arabising its mid market contact centre products for the Middle East region, all winners here deserve credit and a moment of glory. Unfortunately, these moments are all too rare in a business that is often overlooked in the grander scheme. The Network Middle East Innovation Awards aims to turn this situation around and provide a platform where the networking industry receives the boost it deserves for its role as the foundation beneath the huge growth enjoyed by the regional economy. All awards were presented by Walid Akawi, the managing director of ITP Business. The main award - Network Professional of the Year - was won by Richard Jasnau, divisional manager of telco operations & infrastructure at Sahm Technologies, the technology arm of Emaar. Sahm Technologies has built a sophisticated infrastructure to provide a solid foundation for Emaar’s property developments throughput Dubai, including the futuristic Dubai Marina property development. The first building phase was completed in 2003, with the last of the towers completed last year. The smart homes offer applications such as high-speed internet connectivity, video streaming and remote access to automated appliances such as refrigerators and air conditioning systems, and cater to the high-end of the residential and holiday property markets.||**|||~|NME-awards-mingling_m.jpg|~|The cream of the Middle East’s networking fraternity catching up prior to the Awards dinner.|~|The 2005 Network Middle East Innovation Awards was a resounding success and the team at ITP would like to thank our readers, the region’s vendors and the BICSI organisation for their help in making the event a landmark occasion for the networking business. Special thanks also goes to the event sponsors, Nokia and Procurve by HP. The support of our readers in voting for two of the awards - Best Network Vendor and Best Systems Integrator – is also greatly appreciated. Next year’s awards will be bigger and better than ever, with an independent panel of judges due to be established in the run-up to next year’s event. Early next year, Network Middle East will also unveil a submissions process that will allow end users and vendors to nominate themselves for awards. So, if you think that you have carried out an innovative network implementation, be sure to let the editorial team at Network Middle East know about it. After all, if it makes the grade, you could be next year’s Network Professional of the Year.||**|||~|atmos-shot_m.jpg|~|The crowd holds its breath as compere David Cass gets ready to announce the Network Professional of the Year.|~| ROLL OF HONOUR Outstanding Innovation in Cabling: Systimax Outstanding Innovation in Security: Cisco Outstanding Innovation in Wireless Networking: Aruba Outstanding Innovation in the Wide Area Network: Foundry Networks Outstanding Innovation in Convergence: HP & Mitel Outstanding Innovation in SMB networking: Avaya Best Newcomer: Peribit Network Pioneer: Etisalat Best Network Vendor in the Middle East: Cisco Best Systems Integrator in the Middle East: Gulf Business Machines Best Fixed Network Implementation: Derek Holland, Emirates Media Best Wireless Network Implementation: Rabih Itani, American University of Beirut Best Converged Network Implementation: Sameer Khoory, e-TQM College Most Innovative use of Networking Technology: Soubhi Abdulkarim, Aspire sports academy Most Influential End User in Middle East Networking: Dr Ibrahim Mishari, Saudi Aramco Network Professional of the Year: Richard Jasnau, Sahm Technologies||**||

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