Founded in 1981, MDS UAE is one of the oldest IT firms in the region; MDS UAE is a holding company that is part of the Midis Group, which represents technology vendors in more than 70 countries, across the Middle East, Europe, and Africa. Associated with over 170 affiliates, the Midis Group has built a reputation for managing financial risk and has been and growing at a CAGR of 14%, over the last ten years.
Midis SI Group is the system integration and services arm of MIDIS Group, which has a presence across 13 countries and 20 major cities and has been acknowledged as one of the top SI’s in the region, by IDC.
[EC] On the occasion of MDS UAE celebrating 40 years of success, and the achievements of the Midis SI Group, do give a list of the various growth milestones that have been achieved over the last four decades.
[Sami Abi Esber] On the 40th anniversary of MDS UAE, the group can look back on several significant milestones in our past, including taking our revenue over AED 2 Billion, building an outstanding team of 900 employees in the UAE, and having in excess of 3000 Customers. We have achieved a three-fold increase in turnover, including 12% compound annual growth from 2008 to 2018. As one of the UAE’s oldest IT companies, which began operations in 1981, it’s gratifying to play a part in this journey.
Along the way, we have been acknowledged and celebrated by several respected international and regional entities; including the World Economic Forum, which included the Midis Group among its inaugural list of 100 companies for the Global Growth Companies initiative, in 2006; recognising these organisations for having a track record of leadership and, above all, exemplary corporate global citizenship. More recently the Forum has once again recognised the Midis Group as inaugural members of their New Champions Community.
MDS UAE has also been nominated by IDC for more than 15 years as the ‘#1 IT Services Company in the UAE’. For the years ahead, we are focused on being leaders in the key Digital Transformation Pillars of Cloud, Security, Big data, Analytics, and AI.
[EC] Please describe the technology and services core competency within the Midis SI Group that has helped to make it a viable and repeatable business over the last four decades.
[Sami Abi Esber] Our success is anchored in the expertise and competence of our highly certified pre-sales team, engineers, support staff and subject matter experts – across Cloud and Data Center Infrastructure, Managed IT, Managed Security, and Software & Professional Services. We also have an extensive background in End User Computing, Mobility, and Communications. Our Enterprise IT and Technical services are addressing the needs of a large portfolio of clients with Servers, Storage, Data Management, Network, Maintenance, Power Solutions, Containerised Data Centers, Outsourcing and Call Centre Services, and much more.
An important part of the Midis SI Group is our Site and Power business, under the Midis Energy brand. Midis Energy is a part of the Midis Group providing a wide variety of Data Center, Power Cooling and Site Preparation solutions across 7 countries in the Middle East; in excess of 1000 employees with several exclusive vendor partnerships.
Midis Energy’s Site and Power business which includes Data Center, Power, Cooling, and Site Preparation solutions, have been awarded the largest and most prestigious Mega Data Centre projects across the Gulf and Middle East region. These include implementing projects for Local, Regional, and International companies including the Megascalers, Telcos, Govt., Aviation, Education, Aviation, and many more high-profile installations across the region.
[EC] As the current President of the Midis SI Group, what is your future vision of the business; What are the key skills and achievements that you have brought into the Group since the nineties; and later into the SI Group?
[Sami Abi Esber] Obviously, our experience of four decades – both qualitatively and quantitatively, are a major strength. Our significant size of operations; as reflected in more than 5000 employees, in 170 companies, across 70 countries; is a big plus, which allows us to rapidly scale new innovations and initiatives. Our vendor partnerships now exceed 35, which includes the fact that we are the top regional partners of Microsoft, Dell EMC, Apple, Cisco, and HP along many other global vendors.
This is also reinforced by our robust and multi-faceted relationships with various governments, public sector entities, and large enterprises. In essence, our continual efforts, to anticipate and stay ahead of market needs, is the key strategic approach, which has given us such comprehensive capabilities; in providing comprehensive end-to-end IT solutions.
[EC] According to you, as we emerge from the pandemic and experience tangible benefits of digital transformation, what do you see are the future opportunities and challenges for the Midis SI Group?
[Sami Abi Esber] The pandemic has accelerated change in the global economy, with a rise in the ‘contact-free economy’; which includes digital commerce, telemedicine, automation, and more. In the context of these changes, the Midis SI Group is focused on contributing to enhancing adaptability, considering both the evolving market dynamics, as well as the needs of all stakeholders.
We are keeping abreast of changing customer preferences, and innovating rapidly, to address them. The Midis SI Group is actively accelerating investments in Industry Specialisation, and 3rd Platform Pillars; and also shifting from a Capex to Opex model, to facilitate our customers through a consumption-based ‘pay-as-you-go’ model.
[EC] On a continuous basis, over the last four decades, what are the technologies, solutions, services that were in demand from UAE enterprises, namely the government and public sector? How has the MIDIS Group restructured itself to meet these service and solution expectations?
[Sami Abi Esber] The Midis Group has a strong relationship with public sector and other large enterprises. We are well aligned with the latest market trends and technologies – such as IoT, Big Data, Cloud, Security and AI. Our acquisition of eHosting DataFort, a leading managed hosting and cloud services company; and LiveRoute- a Microsoft Azure partner, and one of the leading Microsoft services and cloud partners in the region; has led to significant capabilities in Managed Services, Security and SOC services for the government and other key sectors.
We have implemented IoT solutions for the transport and oil sectors; and we are also particularly passionate about Big Data. Our Big Data and Robotics Process Automation portfolio has been enhanced by our acquisition of Magnoos – a value-added reseller and technology implementation company that specialises in Data Management & Analytics, Service Management, and Automation software. So, as a group, we have constantly evolved, and still remain committed to staying a step ahead of emerging opportunities.
[EC] Which are the top vendors, solutions, services in terms of revenue contribution for the MIDIS Group? How has this influenced the internal organisational architecture and functioning of the MIDIS SI Group?
[Sami Abi Esber] We collaborate with industry leaders and have highest level of partnerships with vendors like IBM, Dell EMC, Microsoft, HPE, HP Inc, Cisco, Apple, Oracle, SAP, Juniper, Veeam, Lenovo etc. We are fortunate to have as many as 55 plus entities across various specialisations within the Midis SI group– to provide end-to-end solutions from within the group companies.
We have invested in educating our team in the latest and most advanced technologies related to artificial intelligence and augmented reality used in anomaly detection, predictive maintenance, and field technician’s support. We have also developed several key partnerships with consulting firms providing data analytics and these will be very useful as we navigate the new normal and align our strategies to keep pace with the new developments.
Domain of solutions and services delivered by the MIDIS SI Group
The Midis SI Group is focused on the following technologies and solutions:
- Cloud & Data Center Infrastructure Services
- Managed IT Services
- Managed Security Services
- Software & Professional Services
- End User Computing, Mobility & Communications
- Enterprise IT – Servers, Storage & Data Management, Network
- Technical services Maintenance, outsourcing and call centre
- Site and Power Solutions
- ELV and AV
- Mobile & containerised datacentres, manufacturing of Telecom Shelters
Moving ahead, we have set up a taskforce to:
- Accelerate investments in Industry Specialisation and 3rd Platform Pillars especially Cloud, Big Data, Analytics, AI, and Security
- Leverage Midis Ecosystem by increasing collaboration with our vendors, and our network of customers & partners
- Drive further demand generation and brand awareness, through the efforts of our Marketing team, and
- Develop new solutions and services, by leveraging emerging technology