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Third platform dominates IDC's Saudi CIO summit

‘Unprecedented’ budgets drive ICT growth in kingdom, says research firm

Third platform dominates IDC's Saudi CIO summit

International Data Corporation (IDC) today announced the opening of the 4th edition of the company's Saudi Arabia CIO Summit, held under the patronage of the kingdom's Ministry of Communications and Information Technology.

IDC said the kingdom's ICT sector was being driven by projects in the government, finance, and oil and gas sectors, where "unprecedented" budgets are combining with the emergent technologies and "a desire from many organisations to leapfrog previous generations".

"Saudi Arabia's public sector was allocated its largest ever budget in 2014, and with a focus on improving e-government maturity, the coming years will be a fascinating period for the development of the kingdom's ICT market," says Abdulaziz Al-Helayyil, regional director for IDC Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and Bahrain.

"Meanwhile, the emergence of new channels is transforming the Saudi banking sector, with investments in Internet and mobile banking, mobile apps, and ‘omni-channel' banking spurring extremely strong IT spending growth. And the rise of real-time analytics and the 'Resilient Oilfield' is driving a similar performance in the oil and gas sector, while the increasingly complex threat landscape in the region is uniting all three of these major verticals in their promotion of IT security as a major priority."

Sitting at the heart of all these developments is the emerging third platform, or what IDC refers to as the four pillars of technology: enterprise mobility; big data and analytics; cloud computing; and social networks. The CIO Summit's agenda explored strategies for enhancing public safety though the use of smart technologies; implementing new approaches to information security; and embracing the evolving IT delivery and service provider ecosystem. Steven Frantzen, IDC's managing director for CEMA, held a discussion on the "transformative power" of third-platform technologies, for both businesses and customers alike, and outlining his vision of what this new IT landscape will look like in 2020.

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