Cloud Confex at DWTC for GITEX Technology Week

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Region’s widest-reaching Cloud Confex at GITEX Technology Week to demonstrate how businesses can optimally use cloud computing to maximise ROI.

MENA cloud market to grow nearly 25% from 2012-2013 to USD 462 million.

Adriana Karaboutis Global Chief Information Officer at Dell
Adriana Karaboutis Global Chief Information Officer at Dell at last year’s Cloud Confex

Adopting cloud-based services at an unprecedented rate, enterprises in the Middle East and Africa are eagerly anticipating GITEX Technology Week’s widest-reaching Cloud Confex yet.

Cloud Confex, which has been the region’s largest integrated cloud exhibition and conference for the past four years, takes place on October 21 at the Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC). The Cloud Confex features Etisalat as a Diamond Sponsor and Accenture and F5 as Platinum Sponsors.

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 percent to USD 462.3 million. The UAE’s cloud market in particular is primed for annual compound growth of 43.7 percent 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 percent 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 USD 40.7 billion in 2011 to USD 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 percent of enterprises will stop providing devices to their employees by 2016, according to a recent survey.

Abdulla Hashim; “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.” — Abdulla Hashim, Senior Vice President ICT Services, Etisalat

At Cloud Confex, industry experts from the region’s most influential companies will participate in panels, demonstrations, and interactive networking sessions to illuminate the opportunities and challenges of cloud computing, and explain best practices to maximise ROI.

Cloud Confex attendees will be able to learn about the latest cloud-related topics, including the business case for adopting the cloud, how enterprises can integrate existing IT architecture with new cloud services,  and opportunities and challenges for businesses adopting the cloud. International experts will also offer their predictions on the cloud landscape in the next two-to-three years and on the true value of the cloud in both quantifiable and qualitative terms.

Diego Arrabal; “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.” — Diego Arrabal, Director, Middle East Sales, F5

Once again presenting a roster of leading international speakers, Cloud Confex will feature a keynote speech by Todd Thibodeaux, President and CEO, CompTIA, on cloud computing business challenges and opportunities.

Other speaker highlights include Fayyaz Alam, VP, Emirates Group IT, who will advise attendees on preparing their networks for changes in cloud computing, based on his experience managing the data centres, operations centre, global networks, and end user devices for Emirates Group. Another must-see is returning cloud expert Daniele Catteddu, Managing Director-EMEA, Cloud Security Alliance, who will present the latest tips on how companies can audit their cloud in order to reduce risk.

Additional speakers include Rajeev Lalwani, Partner, Deloitte Consulting, who heads its Technology Consulting Practice in the MENA region, and Dr. Jassim Haji, Director Information Technology, Gulf Air, who has implemented key innovations at Gulf Air with their World Wide Contact Centre and Cloud Computing.

In addition, Cloud Confex officials are expecting strong attendance from IT departments of large enterprises at the Cloud Governance, Risk and Compliance Workshop on October 23-24, led by cloud expert Peter HJ van Eijk. Participants in this intensive training course will receive a practical working knowledge on governance, risk management and compliance in cloud computing.

This year Cloud Confex will also present the first-ever Cloud Awards on  October 21. Awards will be presented in the categories of Best Data Centre Infrastructure Project, Best Cloud Security Implementation, Best Virtualisation Solution Implementation, Best Big Data Solution Project, and Best Government Implementation of Cloud Solution. The judging committee includes Todd Thibodeaux, President and Chief Executive Officer COMPTIA; Daniele Catteddu, Managing Director EMEA, Cloud Security Alliance; Sam Johnston, Director of Cloud, Equinix EMEA; and Kuldeep Bhatnagar, IT Advisor, Environment Agency, Government of Abu Dhabi. The judges will make their decision based on an entry’s innovation, integration, functionality, value, usability and scalability.

Trixee Loh;“This year has witnessed a tipping point for businesses around the world adopting cloud-based services. Reflecting this take-up, GITEX’s Cloud Confex has gone from the ‘when and why’ to the ‘how’ of the cloud. As the cloud industry’s leading international event, Cloud Confex is connecting enterprises, exhibitors and industry experts so that business executives can gain the leading edge from the industry’s top players on how best use the cloud to land new lines of business, enhance employee productivity, and secure intellectual property.” — Trixee Loh, Senior Vice President, DWTC, organiser of GITEX Technology Week,

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. Eighty percent of world’s leading ICT brands were present. Employing 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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