Lenovo keen to find a quick solution to regional vacancy

Lenovo looking for new regional manager to build on Middle East growth

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By  Andrew Seymour Published  February 24, 2008

One of the senior figures heading Lenovo's search for a new regional manager for the Middle East, Egypt and Pakistan says the aim is to find a suitable candidate "as soon as possible" to prevent any negative impact on the business.

Mathias Schaedel, VP South-East region at Lenovo EMEA, insists the PC vendor will push the boat out to find a personality capable of executing its ambitious growth plans in the wake of Imtiaz Ghani's recent resignation.

"I can see this business really doubling and tripling in the next two or three years in terms of revenue, and we need to find a leader that is well-experienced, knows the region and has great contacts, but also somebody who can lead the team to a complete new level in terms of volume and development," explained Schaedel.

Lenovo has placed CFO Peter Fernandes in charge of Middle East affairs until a permanent replacement is found. Schaedel admits that whoever is given the role will be managing Lenovo at a pivotal time in its regional development given the firm's plans to strengthen its server portfolio and launch consumer products in the UAE and Saudi Arabia.

"On top of that we have decided that we will have some of our own employees on the ground in Saudi, which we don't have today," he revealed. "This is another investment that we have discussed and approved, and we will start to hire these people in the next few weeks."

Schaedel refuted any suggestion that Ghani left over performance-related issues, calling the Middle East business "very healthy" and "profitable". He also cited IDC data that shows the vendor recorded a 54% increase in UAE shipments during the fourth quarter and grew seven times faster than the overall Saudi PC market in the same period.

Ghani left the company earlier this month having been at the helm of Lenovo's Middle East operations since the vendor completed its $1.75 billion acquisition of IBM's personal computing business three years ago.

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