ME IT Spend To Grow 6-8% In 2012

EXCLUSIVE: Regional IT spend will grow at double the global rate, according to EMC global CFO.

The information technology (IT) sector in the Middle East is expanding rapidly, with IT spend expected to grow at least six to eight per cent in 2012, according to a senior official at technology giant EMC Corporation.

“In the Middle East we expect IT spending may well hit double digits in 2012,” David Goulden, executive vice president and CFO at EMC told Gulf Business in an exclusive interview. “It will at least grow six to eight per cent. And that emphasises the opportunity in the Middle East, because companies are still building and investing, innovating and growing,” he said.

However, global IT spend is estimated to grow much slower, at three to four per cent this year- down from seven to eight per cent in 2011, he said.

EMC, considered the world’s biggest maker of corporate data storage equipment, has over 750 employees in the Middle East, and is now eyeing further expansion in the region. “We have made huge investments over the years in the region,” said Goulden. “That includes a centre of excellence we established in Cairo a couple of years ago. So we have more than just our traditional distribution and services capabilities in the region and we will continue to invest in growth in the region,” he said.

Earlier this year, the firm announced that its 2011 full year revenues hit $20 billion, an increase of 18 per cent over 2010. “One of the reasons for the good performance is because we are in the cloud computing, which is growing faster than the IT average,” said Goulden.

And this year, despite low estimates for the global IT spend, EMC expects to grow substantially. “This year, we have said that we expect to grow at around 10 per cent in terms of revenues so that’s $22 billion. That’s almost three times the IT spending,” he said.

“We also expect to be a $28 billion company by 2014, so we are excited about that growth and we expect that growth to continue through the next wave of IT transition,” he added.