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CA MENA to build local presence

CA MENA to open more office, grow headcount, to better serve region

CA MENA to build local presence
George Khouri (l) of CA MENA and Gilbert Lacroix, CA Technologies.

CA MENA, the local operation of CA Technologies, part of a strategic partnership with Midis Group, plans to expand its geographic reach and increase its headcount as part of efforts to decentralize operations.

The strategic partnership operation, which was formed in May last year, increased from 8 employees to 25 last year, and plans to reach 35-40 employees by the end of this year. The company has also opened offices in , Bahrain Qatar and Kuwait, and aims to have a direct presence in all countries by 2012.

George Khouri, group managing director CA MENA said: "The reason we decentralized our operation was we wanted to get closer to the customer, the old concept of head office, with everyone travelling is becoming less viable as an option for the client."

Khouri said that CA MENA is seeing increasing demand for its security solutions in the region, and it is also working with some early adopters for cloud projects in the telecoms, oil & gas, finance and aviation sectors in the region.

CA MENA conducted a full channel audit during 2010, Khouri said, and while some existing partners were terminated, the franchise had appointed new channel partners.

"We have done an audit on all of the channel, to verify all of their capabilities. The challenge is to steer the channel towards focus, every channel wants to do everything for the whole country, and this is an impossible task. We went through the audit process, we kept some of the existing channel, we terminated some other channels, and at the same time we recruited new channel," he said.

"The existing channels today have a buy in on our go to market plan, they know we are not going to compete with them on the services, they know that they are going to be protected on the accounts they are working on, and they know that they have to go through a certification process and focus in order for them to win business."

The company is encouraging partners to specialize, and is helping those partners with strength in a particular area to land projects in other countries in the region, to build their business. CA MENA is also drawing on the strength of CA's South African franchise, and CA itself, to deliver additional expertise in areas such as mainframe.

Gilbert Lacroix senior VP and general manager CA Technologies, said that the reaction of partners and customers to the franchise model has been positive.

"I met a number of customers and partners, and all of them said they were very happy, the model works, and that they felt secure, because we have a venture with a local company. If you talk to our customers they regained confidence [in CA]. Many of the partners were a bit concerned, they thought that because of this venture they would not be able to work with us anymore - if they are serious, they are. We have been very selective, George's team are really looking at partnering with companies that can bring something to the market," Lacroix said.

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