Get to know: George Saliba

George Saliba is a veteran of the regional printing channel and is now putting his expertise to use at Bahrain-registered Medmark, a Lexmark-focused company with distribution, reselling and services capabilities. With the regional printer market climbing at unprecedented rates, we thought it was time to ‘get to know' George Saliba...

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By  Andrew Seymour Published  November 19, 2007

George Saliba is a veteran of the regional printing channel and is now putting his expertise to use at Bahrain-registered Medmark, a Lexmark-focused company with distribution, reselling and services capabilities. With the regional printer market climbing at unprecedented rates, we thought it was time to ‘get to know' George Saliba...

What is your career history to date?

I graduated in business administration in Lebanon in 1992. After working for five years in the gold and jewellery business I decided to move to Dubai where I joined the Al Abbas Group. I then worked for Germany-based international IT manufacturer Pelikan Hard Copy for four years before joining Tech Data in 2003 as HP supplies product manager. In 2005 I joined Medmark IT Distribution as Lexmark sales manager for the Middle East and North Africa.

What do you enjoy most about working in the Middle East IT market?

The market is fast growing and offers a massive amount of opportunities to gain different experience and market knowledge. I really enjoy working with the latest technology, especially printing solutions, where there is always the opportunity to offer the best deals to customers.

What do you dislike most about working in the Middle East IT market?

To be honest the IT market in the Middle East cannot be considered mature. On a daily basis you come across different scenarios where unethical practices are happening in terms of competition, grey products or parallel importing from the Far East. Counterfeiting of supplies products is a big problem. Those practices are affecting the legal players in the market.

What is the most valuable business lesson you've learnt?

The most valuable business lesson is to be honest with all your partners and vendors, and give the maximum support at all times since this will boost your business. In order to be a distinguished manager you should practice the procedure of finding solutions rather than pointing the finger. And finally, grab every available opportunity otherwise someone else will be waiting for it.

How would you describe your management style?

I very much believe in the team spirit where the main objective is to give maximum support to each member and encourage them to achieve their goals in a very friendly environment. Since a failure of one is a failure of all, the success of one is a success shared by all of the company.

What is the best deal you have ever closed?

During my work in different IT companies I have closed many deals for government tenders, as well the private sector. I recently closed one deal worth US$500,000 for Lexmark supplies for one of our major dealers in Saudi Arabia which has a contract to supply Lexmark products to Aramco.

What is the proudest moment of your career to date?

In my 11 years of experience in Dubai I have faced many successful moments along with some sad ones, but the proudest moment of them all was when I received the Tech Data International Chairman Award for the best supplies products manager in the Middle East and Europe. The award was presented at a ceremony at Tech Data's HQ.

How do you relax outside of the work environment?

By travelling to different destinations during vacations. To date, I've visited more than 25 countries spanning four continents. During the weekend my best relaxation time is spent playing with my 16-month old son and spending time with my family. Whenever the weather is suitable, I also like to spend a few hours every weekend at the Hatta Fort Hotel Shooting Club, challenging other friends in shooting plates.

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