Building channel momentum
Jean-Loup Desamaison-Cognet, vice president, Region Central, Eastern Europe and Middle East Regions at Arrow ECS EMEA, explains how the company has continued to build channel impetus in the regional IT market.
CHANNEL: Briefly talk us through Arrow ECS’ focus in the Middle East market and what are the group’s goals in 2015?
JEAN-LOUP DESAMAISON-COGNET: As a global value-added distributor of servers, data storage, network security, enterprise software, cloud solutions, virtualisation and access infrastructure, Arrow prioritises alignment with the vendors in the region, as well as initiatives in business development, and teaming up with enterprise vendors, particularly the medium size business market. Specifically for this region, we see growth opportunity because distributors do not have as strong a presence here as they do in other, more mature markets.
What is the status of the Middle East IT channel? Has business been growing for Arrow in the region?
The Middle East channel is stabilising, and while there are certain disruptions and limitations common to all growing economies, the region is a very attractive market for Arrow’s diverse products and services. In fact, according to IDC, spending on ICT products and services in the MEA will cross the $270bn mark in 2015 and the IT market is expected to grow 9% year on year in 2015. Business has definitely been growing for Arrow and in light of these ongoing developments, we can only expect that it will continue to grow across the region.
You have recently taken on the role as vice president in EMEA. What would you say is your priority for the company in this region?
The MEA region is the second-fastest growing market worldwide and certainly presents business opportunities and growth potentials for Arrow. My priority is for the group to achieve healthy growth, which we plan to achieve by expanding our market share in regions in which we are not yet fully established, such as Saudi Arabia and Egypt. Another priority is aligning with our partners’ initiatives from a technology and channel standpoint.
Under your leadership, how will Arrow achieve its objectives of growing its business with partners this year?
Vendors are expecting us to be their business development partners, to grow the channel, find new routes to market, and to make sure that their technology is visible as a solution from the channel perspective and this is exactly what we accelerate and offer to all our vendor partners. We complement the channel partners by providing the necessary insights into the market.
There are a lot of transitions happening in the Middle East IT market. Which are the most significant for Arrow and channel partners in the region, and why?
We believe in the potential of every country, and we believe that the Middle East in particular, presents tremendous opportunities for growth and development. We find that in spite of the drop of oil prices, demand is maintaining ground. Some key areas for development include infrastructure convergence, IT training and consulting. There are big solutions being implemented and big projects underway. For example, in some countries like Egypt, Iraq, and Saudi Arabia, Arrow anticipates business to boom as demand for security and computing solutions grows with the development of these countries.