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CIOs talk change with thought and industry leaders at precedent-setting regional forum

United Arab Emirates: Monday, March 17 - 2008 @ 11:04

Over the past five years, IT spending has more than doubled in most Middle Eastern nations and its growth will stand solidly in double digits for the foreseeable future. This reflects IT’s rapid inroads into business, industry, and government and the need for strong technology leadership. According to IDC, the position of CIO is still relatively new and technology is changing so fast that management traditions have not yet been established.

This makes addressing key business issues, like contributing to the bottom line and keeping pace with development, that much more challenging.

Which is one of the primary reasons for the IDC Middle East CIO Summit. Built from the expressed needs of CIOs in research carried out by IDC, the agenda has sessions dedicated to core technology issues like security, data centres, and infrastructure management to larger areas such as the impact of business mobility, staff retention and training, and the overall role of the CIO. IDC expects the summit to spur long-term professional friendships and business relationships that will affect everything from the types of technology employed to how people go about their day-to-day work.

Part of the summit’s value rests with networking. Representing countries from Egypt to Pakistan, the gathered CIOs are examining and sharing strategies for using IT to tackle business challenges. Coming from a wide range of industries (represented by firms as diverse as Dubai World, Dubai Holding, Saudi British Bank, SAMBA, Saudi Alliance, Qatar Gas, Oman Oil, National Bank of Egypt, Gulf Air, American Express Bahrain, Jordan Armed Forces, Equate Petrochemical CO KSCC from Kuwait, and Mobilink from Pakistan), the CIOs will also hear from IDC thought leaders on top-level strategies.

Two of these thought leaders are John Gantz and Frank Gens. As IDC’s Chief Research Officer and Senior Vice President, Gantz has his finger on the pulse of technology innovation and is presenting on how the ICT cycles impact business as hype gives way to reality and long-term gains in productivity. By singling out key trends and how market leaders anticipate and use them, he will provide a framework for developing a progressive ICT strategy.

As Senior Vice President & Chief Analyst, Frank Gens spends a great deal of time with CIOs. In his presentation, he investigates opportunities for levering specific information technologies and collaborative approaches for meeting business goals. He also moderates a panel discussion on what keeps CIOs awake at night.

Complementing presentations and discussions by Gantz, Gens, and other IDC senior managers are the vendor presentations focused on specific aspects of IT strategies and technology innovation. In addition to the support of Dubai Internet City as a technology partner, the summit has partnerships with and presentations from APC-MGE, Alcatel Lucent, Cisco, Dell, Etisalat, Fujitsu Siemens Computers, IBM, Injazat Data Systems, Intel, ITS2, McAfee, Nokia, Research in Motion, Samsung, SAP, Symantec, and Trend Micro.

Gold Partner and IT security solutions provider and training firm I(TS)2 considers the CIO Summit an important event in aiding CIOs with strategy development. According to Samer M. Omar, General Manager of I(TS)2, “we are excited to be the only Saudi company at this pivotal summit as our regional research, which is largely based on IDC research, has identified improving enterprise security as the number one issue facing CIOs today. The introduction of Raqeeb Managed Security Services, the region’s first world-class MSS, will provide CIOs with real security solutions for their security and risk concerns.”

Trend Micro, another Gold partner, concurs, that the IDC CIO summit is a pivotal platform for Middle East companies to address prevailing issues in the regions IT industry. “Trend Micro will address IT and security professionals at the IDC CIO Summit, highlighting the major challenges facing the region’s IT industry, and outline the findings of the Trend Micro Threat Report and 2008 Forecast,” said Raimund Genes, Chief Technology Officer of Anti-Malware at Trend Micro.

The Region’s First IDC CIO Summit

As mentioned above, the summit will also provide an in-depth understanding of the new role of the CIO, covering additional topics such as:
• The Role of the CIO in a Region of Change
• What Keeps CIOs up at Night: Governance, Risk, Compliance?
• Data Centre Transformation and Enhancement of Business Strategy
• Transformation of ICT Societies
• Enterprise Mobility
• Simplifying Technology for Business Transformation
• Operational Excellence and Business Agility
• IT Services Outsourcing as Business Enabler
• The Dynamic Datacenter
• Green IT and Energy-effective ICT
• Managing, Motivating, and Retaining Staff
• The Future of IT and Communications Markets and Their Impact on Business

An invitation-only event, IDC’s groundbreaking CIO Summit involves an elite group of more than 115 CIOs.

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Monday, March 17- 2008 @ 11:04 UAE local time (GMT+4) Replication or redistribution in whole or in part is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Mediaquest FZ LLC.

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