MENA outpacing most of world in cloud computing growth

Robin Amlot| Cpifinancial

Part of GITEX Technology Week’s GITEX TRENDS segment, this year’s event comes as IT research and advisory company Gartner predicts the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region is projected to experience one of the highest global growth rates for public cloud services, increasing from 2012 to 2013 by 24.5 per cent to $462.3 million.

The UAE’s cloud market in particular is primed for annual compound growth of 43.7 per cent until 2016, according to a recent report from technology-focused market intelligence firm IDC.

Across the globe, the cloud has exploded in popularity over the past few years, as companies utilise it for backup, storage, network, security and management systems. Key benefits include enhancing their IT costs and scalability, and enabling employees to access technology and data while on the go.

More than 80 per cent of companies worldwide now use cloud solutions, according to a recent study by IT Industry Association CompTIA.  The global cloud market is expected to grow from $40.7 billion in 2011 to $241 billion in 2020, according to a recent study by financial advisory firm Deloitte. Both CompTIA and Deloitte have key speakers presenting at Cloud Confex.

Cloud computing has been especially boosted by the rapidly-growing trend of employees bringing their own personal mobile devices to work. Gartner Inc. predicts that nearly 40 per cent of enterprises will stop providing devices to their employees by 2016, according to a recent survey.

Abdulla Hashim, Senior Vice President ICT Services, Etisalat, said, “Today enterprises are making investments in technology that provide a long term value for business, in addition to reducing capital expenses. New age technologies like cloud computing create efficiency, better IT management and resources for all departments. Cloud services also combine IT service provisioning capabilities with network connectivity. As a leading operator in the region, we already possess tangible assets of IT and network capabilities, as well as a huge track record of trusted service for small businesses and large corporations’ customer bases. GITEX is a strong platform to emphasise our enduring achievement and standing in the UAE market, enabling us to showcase our latest products, services and accomplishments to a local as well as global audience.”

Diego Arrabal, Director, Middle East Sales, F5, said, “As an increasing number of organisations in the Middle East incorporate cloud computing and new flexible data centre architecture into their application and service delivery arsenal, F5 solutions help them ensure scalability, security, availability and manageability across their environments and systems.  Key areas to address tend to include automated application deployment, consistent management of security and addressing performance issues in the cloud.  Visiting GITEX Cloud Confex provides an ideal forum for businesses to learn how F5 can build-in operational efficiency, flexibility and control to new data centre and cloud infrastructure initiatives.”

Now firmly established as MEASA’s top ICT event – and one of the most influential in the world – GITEX Technology Week attracted 139,000 ICT professionals from 144 countries last year. 80 per cent of world’s leading ICT brands were present. Under the theme “Lets Create, Disrupt and Re-imagine Together”, the 33rd edition of GITEX Technology Week 2013 runs from October 20-24 at DWTC.

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