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Former Cisco Gulf chief set for SAP assignment

Samer Alkharrat ends association with networking vendor to join business software giant

Former Cisco Gulf chief set for SAP assignment
SAP is expected to clarify Samer Alkharrat’s role when he officially begins work at the company next month.

SAP is set to reinforce its regional management set-up in the next month by bringing former Cisco Gulf boss Samer Alkharrat on board.

Alkharrat recently left the networking vendor after more than 15 years at the company. He served as managing director for the Gulf and Pakistan, overseeing the expansion of Cisco's operations to 350 people.

Alkharrat will join up with the enterprise software company to begin his new assignment in the first week of August.

At this stage it is not clear what his precise role at the Germany-based outfit will be. Talk in the channel suggests he will manage SAP's Gulf business, but it is also possible that he could take a MENA-wide role. That is likely to depend on whether SAP is planning any changes to its senior management structure.

Currently its Middle East and North Africa managing director is Sergio Maccotta, who has been in charge of regional affairs since SAP bought back SAP Arabia's exclusive regional licence more than two and a half years ago.

SAP declined to provide details of the arrangement, except to issue a statement that read: "SAP is continually hiring top talent as we expand our operations across the region. SAP adheres to a policy of announcing new hires only when they are onboard."

Alkharrat has a comprehensive understanding of the Middle East market from his time at Cisco.

When he moved to Cisco's Dubai office from San Jose in 1998, he gained the distinction of becoming Cisco's first systems engineering leader in the Middle East. During his tenure as managing director he also chaired Cisco's Real Estate board, which is responsible for driving the development of its real estate solutions business at a worldwide level.

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