Naresh Kothari, managing director, Intertec Systems LLC talks about what makes the company tick and the secret behind its longevity in the highly competitive SI sector
Naresh Kothari, managing director, Intertec Systems LLC talks about what makes the company tick and the secret behind its longevity in the highly competitive SI sector.
Having been in the IT solutions provider
business for over 20 years, Intertec Systems LLC knows that to succeed and stay on the top, it has to continue to evolve its business model without losing the core focus.
As one of the leading IT systems integrator and solution provider company in the Middle East region, Intertec Systems has over the years enjoyed strong market credibility with its customers, employees and partners and the SI credits this to the more than 20 high-accredition alliances with industry leaders and continued investments in R&D, quality and capability development.
Naresh Kothari, managing director, Intertec Systems LLC, said the company has two lines of business, the systems integration and its own IPR applications offerings. Kothari explained that the SI business has strategic partners in Saudi Arabia, Oman and Qatar where the company works with other SIs in niche areas that it has built expertise in. “We realised that over the years, we have not grown our own IPR application revenues (ERP, Hostnet and Remex) as much as we wanted to in the region. The prime reason was the absence of a channel strategy and having 100% dependency on our direct sales and marketing team,” he said.
He said this limited Intertec Systems’ reach, however, the company is in the early days of building a channel strategy and has already begun discussions with some potential partners.
Kothari said for the IPR applications business, Intertec is already developing its channel as it needs to address a larger market by identifying new opportunities and ensuring maximum conversions. “What has worked well for us over the years is the level of flexibility we give our customers on customising our product modules to suit their business processes and the availability of direct support instead of accessing such through a partner,” he said.
With vendors urging the SI partners to specialise on certain market verticals and geographies, Kothari said Intertec has benefited from developing domain expertise. He added that 50% of Intertec Systems’ revenue comes from the corporate sector, 35% from government and 15% from the finance industry. “We are looking into improving our banking portfolio in addition to getting into new verticals and geographies across the region. Banks haven’t been spending on the levels they should be, especially on the risk side of the business and we expect that to happen this year,” Kothari said, adding that the company is also investing in the hospitality sector.
Established in 1991, Intertec Systems currently has local offices in the UAE, KSA, Bahrain and Oman, and customers across the region. Kothari said what has given the company to have this prolonged existence in a very difficult and highly competitive systems integrator space is differentiation. “We strive towards combining our strengths with an understanding of our customers’ customer to bring value addition to our clients. We are also focusing on providing industry specific applications within government, banking, hospitality, real estate, healthcare and education sectors,” he said.
Aiming to raise brand awareness, Kothari said Intertec utilises its offices in the UAE, Bahrain, Oman and Saudi Arabia to reach out to clients. “Each market is different in terms of its style of doing business. With the support of our partners, as well as internal strengths, we firmly believe we will continue to increase our market share,” he said.
He explained that from this year, Intertec is increasing its focus on virtualisation and mobility as every customer is looking at mobile devices and apps have to be compatible. “We will also focus on VDI, which has been gaining lot of traction in the region. The technology has come a long way and it is more mature now with the costs having come down.
Kothari said business has been challenging in the last four years from 2008 to now, and veering towards flat growth during the recession. Intertec managed to achieve a 30% growth and this year looks promising as well, he said. “We have grown from 100 to 300 people within a span of four years. There are ups and downs because of the choppy market situation, but players who are focused on customers will have an opportunity to continue growing,” he remarked.
Looking to the future, Kothari added that: “From this year, we are going to increase our focus on virtualisation and mobility as every customer is looking at mobility and the applications sector. We will also focus on VDI, which has been gaining lots of footing in the region. We are also working to bring three new applications (cloud & process driven applications) to the market by mid next year, ” he said.