Microsoft Azure is working towards simplifying the process of building modern applications which are reliable, scalable, and maintainable. Ahmad El Dandachi, Enterprise Lead for Microsoft, speaks about vendor strategies.
What are the products and solutions that Microsoft will be showcasing in GITEX 2022?
The theme for this GITEX is “Believe the Hype – It is real.” And I believe it’s here, that is the metaverse, the main theme for Microsoft this year. The blending of virtual reality and mixed reality with the real world is really enabling our customers across organizations and industries to embrace this hybrid future.
How is Microsoft helping organizations with data security?
Security has always been a key priority for Microsoft. We significantly invest in cybersecurity. In the coming five years, a $20 billion investment going into security products, tools, and technologies. At Microsoft, we prioritize people’s skills to ensure they have the right skills to drive security. Technologies will continue to digitize everything and ensure that digital transformation is happening.
How is Azure different from other cloud offerings?
Microsoft has been a hyper-scale cloud provider for many years. We have been here for close to three decades. In 2019, launched two data centers in UAE (Dubai and Abu Dhabi). So that is a big differentiator versus other hyper scalars in the country. The other differentiator is our partner ecosystem.
What are your vendor and customer strategies in the MENA region that you want to work with?
There is a big focus on being industry relevant in this region. Microsoft has been focused on bringing the right industry expertise and resources worldwide. There is a very big investment in this area and making sure that we are not only bringing the solutions that we have only from a horizontal perspective, but we are also making it very relevant and industry-specific: energy, manufacturing, FSI, public sector, health care, and education being the prime sectors we are focussing on. There is a big shift in how we are going to market, not only from a solution and workload perspective but also from an industry perspective.
How can Microsoft become a digital transformation partner to the manufacturing companies in this region?
The cloud is going to be an enabler for that digital transformation. We believe that the agility, flexibility, and resilience; those customers look at, especially post-COVID, are key to that transformation. The cloud for manufacturing that we released a few months ago will be one of those enablers for those manufacturing companies to leverage those cloud services to help them be more resilient and agile in the way they are developing their services.
How do you feel the public cloud is evolving in the Middle East region?
We have more regions with our data centers in this world. UAE is definitely a big area of focus. We have had our data centers here for three years. We have data centers in South Africa, Qatar, and Israel. UAE has a lot of appetites to grow, and there are a lot of growth priorities that we have.