The 9th tech summit witnessed a participation of more than 85 leading software partners from India. Touted as the ‘business edition’, the conference provided a platform for ISODA members to network with top Qatari IT companies and over 30 Indian IT companies in Doha
The annual flagship event of Infotech Software Dealers Association (ISODA), Tech Summit – coded as TS9 – served as a focused platform, not only for the participating software partners from India, but also for the supporting sponsors. Organised from January 31 to February 3 this year in Doha, Qatar, TS9 Business Edition had an enhanced format to provide maximum value to both sponsors as well as participants.
Highlights of the conference include two business transformation workshops that focused on how can partners sustain and scale up their business in the competitive landscape. The first workshop, ‘Creativity Unleashed – Workshop on Innovative Thinking’, was conducted by Shankar Subramaniam, Founder and Principal Consultant of Ninedots (an organisation that specialises in innovative consulting and training on creativity and lateral thinking). The second workshop, ‘Managing Business for Exponential Growth’, was conducted by Prof Parimal Merchant, Director – GFMB, S P Jain School of Global Management.
Apart from these, Sudarsan Ranganathan, an ISODA alumni and Regional Directo – South at Hitachi Systems Micro Clinic, shared the motivational ‘The Cockroach Story’ while emphasising on two aspects of life i.e. adapting is reactive, adopting is proactive and how adaptation has been the cockroach’s supreme characteristics for survival. He also touched upon the learnings and best practices for creating a great organisational culture.
Another founding member of ISODA, Vishal Bindra, CEO of ACPL Systems and Klassify (a cyber security startup) chose the occasion to share the growth story behind Klassify that has emerged as a fast-growing indigenous company that provides data classification solutions to enterprises.
Opportunities in Qatar
Keeping its promise of providing new business opportunities to Indian software partners, the association also organised a networking session with Qatar business fraternity. Azim Abbas, President of IBPC Qatar (Indian Business and Professionals Council) talked about the business opportunities for partners in Qatar and how IBPC can help them set a foothold in the country.
“This will mark the beginning of exploring business climate between ISODA members, local Qatari IT companies and Indian IT companies in Doha. We intend to offer bouquet of business, trade expansion as well as mutual investment possibilities. There are vast opportunities for foreign investment and joint ventures, as Qatar has a friendly, efficient and conducive investment environment,” pointed out Abbas.
Furthermore, Jahangir Burhonov, Vice President – Business Development, Qatar Financial Centre, highlighted how QFC as one of the world’s leading and fastest growing business and financial centres, offers its own legal, regulatory, tax, and business environment.
To forge a strong relationship, the association took a first-of-its-kind initiative to host a joint business networking dinner, in partnership with IBPC on January 31. Explaining the reason for holding this networking dinner on the sidelines of ISODA Tech Summit, L Ashok, Chairman, TS9 – Business edition and Founder and CEO of Futurenet Technologies, stated, “Doha is the most happening place in the business and ICT sectors in the country, with a string of world technology giants setting up their R&D centres, incubation wings and production bases, taking advantage of the state’s proactive policies.”
This year’s summit had several new facets keeping in view the focus laid by the government to usher in a digital revolution in India. “The two-day summit enabled ISODA members to diversify into new and emerging global markets and also assess the changing trend in the global market place and adapt to situations to be in the traction,” asserted N K Mehta, Chairman, ISODA, and CEO of Secure Network Solutions.
The Indian Ambassador to Qatar, His Excellency P Kumaran graced the occasion with his esteemed presence. In his keynote address, Kumaran said, “Firstly, we are very elated with the fact that an IT association from India chose Doha as the avenue to organise its annual tech summit. Today, Qatar National Tourism Council has prioritised India as a major market for promotion of Qatari tourism. We have about 700,000 Indians here and base level of tourism from India visiting their families and relatives is quite high. At the top of it, the Council is looking to promote some kind of specialised tourism and MICE tourism like conferences and events is definitely one of the strategies. So, when ISODA came to us, we were glad to offer all the support in terms of providing concessions in immigration, customs facilitation, and discounts at venues for such conferences.”
He commented, “Apart from this, ISODA will certainly help us project ourselves effectively as an IT power in the world. We already have a reasonable presence of IT companies here in Qatar. All these will help us showcase the range of skillsets that our IT companies possess and the kind of value we can bring to our partnerships with various companies in different parts of the world. You will effectively underline the fact that we have skills in different areas, how you leverage each other to provide value to your clients and this is very interesting for the markets that don’t understand or know us very well. Qatar is an upcoming IT market and technology is being increasingly valued in different industries – be it banking, financial institutions or fintech companies.”
In a special address to the august gathering, Dr R Seetharaman, CEO, Doha Bank, spoke about the changing dynamics impacting economies and technologies. He said, “In my message to software professionals, I would like to state that the solution to promote global growth and bring financial inclusion lies in the fourth industrial revolution. Global sustainability can be augmented by virtual and technological realities and can be redefined by digital transformation. This is the biggest opportunity we all have in front of us.”
He further added, “Convergence of technologies has totally transformed the banking sector. In fact, every industry is getting completely redefined by digital transformation and institutions need to embrace these technologies in the total terms. Going forward, technology can be a big enabler for us to become prosperous. Every country has to factor the digital advantage while framing any policy.”
K Gunasegharan, Director, eCaps and President of ISODA expressed confidence on greater collaboration in the field of ICT. He said, “The future co-operation between the two countries would aim at promotion of peace and stimulation of greater investment through IBPC. ISODA would focus on increasing business with local Qatari companies and forge joint partnerships to take business relations to newer heights.”
On the sidelines of the event, the association also presented ISODA Award for Business Excellence. Selected by a jury which comprised of Devesh Aggarwal, Kavita Singhal, Nandini Sharma and Hiren Shah, the award was given to software partners who were rated the best in terms of business performance, business practices, and innovations during the last financial year.
The sponsors for this year’s summit included Microsoft, Lenovo, Citrix, Kaspersky Lab, Tripwire, SOTI, Sophos, Red Hat, ForcePoint, Tech Data, Magic Box, Everest IMS, ST Electronics, Efficient IP and Qatar Tourism.
|Winners of ISODA Award for Business Excellence|