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3Com targets enterprise customers at 2006 show

Vendor seeks to triple share of networking market

3Com is looking to step up its presence in the region’s enterprise space, it declared last week. The firm wants to triple its share of the region’s networking market within the next three years, its regional boss said at Gitex.

“The Middle East is the fastest growing market for 3Com today,” said Issac Shihabi, general manager, 3Com Middle East.

“Companies of all sizes are flourishing across the region and this means the demand to manage overall IT infrastructures is going to accelerate even further over the next few years. 2006 has been a great year for us overall, having secured some exciting new deals and tapped into diverse businesses including some very large-scale enterprises and also mid-size businesses.

“We see our next wave of growth from the enterprise market and have already begun penetrating key markets.”

3Com is hoping that its initiatives in the enterprise space will help it to increase its share of the networking market in the Middle East from around 10% at present to up to 30% in two or three years’ time. Key vertical areas of growth for 3Com include education, government, telco and healthcare.

The vendor has netted a number of deals in the enterprise space over the past year, particularly in Saudi Arabia; it was selected by Arab National Bank to upgrade its network infrastructure, and also won contracts with the Civil Aviation Authority and the Ministry of Health.

At Gitex, one of the highlights of the show for 3Com was its 3108 wireless phone, which enables users to roam a building while staying connected with customers, partners and co-workers by using a range of voice over internet protocol (VoIP), e-mail and data applications. Designed for people who need to be mobile, the handset’s unique selling point is that — unlike with a mobile phone — users can receive calls destined for their desks. The firm also demonstrated its new unified switch for small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs).

“Convergence, wireless and security are not only buzz words but a reality today. Customers are leveraging the most they can from their IT system as businesses become extremely competitive,” said Shihabi.

“Our integrated portfolio of security, voice, wireless, network management and service products helps business in ensuring continuity and closes the gap between business growth and security risk.”

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