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Interview: “We Hope to Win Contract Sales Orders Worth a Billion Dollars in the Next Three to Five Years”

May 26, 2012

Source: Express Computer, India

Huawei, one of the fastest growing Chinese telecom equipment vendors, is now targeting the Indian enterprise market in addition to the telecom service providers that have been its traditional customers. Eric Yu, President, Huawei's enterprise unit of the Indian region, discussed the company’s strategy for the enterprise segment with Heena Jhingan

Did you decide to target enterprises after looking at the telecom order book for 2010, where most of the new operators had expansion plans but, due to the recent regulatory developments, these plans have been put on hold?

The decision to extend our offering to the enterprise domain was in no way influenced by the fortunes of our telecom business. There is no problem regarding telecom growth; we are among the fastest growing telecom vendors in the country. Rather, we believed that this was the perfect time for us to make inroads into the enterprise space because, of late, we have observed swift developments taking place in the ICT space and there are specific problems that enterprises face. They see challenges in managing their IT infrastructure. They have problems managing product integration, especially, with some of the newer technologies that are coming in.

Our vision is to enrich human life using communication and that value can come through ICT. The idea behind flagging off the enterprise unit in the country is to bring value for the enterprise customer.

In 2010, the enterprise business accounted for about 8% of the company’s $28 billion global revenues. Although we have just entered the Indian enterprise market, we see huge potential. In the next five years, we should be able to garner 10% of the market or a billion dollars in sales orders and contracts.

How do you intend to address the enterprise segment in India?

We will focus on understanding the challenges of enterprise clients and customize our solutions accordingly. Doing this alone is not enough as the enterprise domain is vast. No vendor can survive alone and offer every service. We will work with partners to approach this market. For the large corporates or the government we work with value-added partners. The other way is to work with premium resellers to tap into the SMB segment. About 90-95% of our sales orders will come from partners. On the one hand, there are solutions to offer to enterprise clients and, on the other, we need to work with our partners to push into the market.

Will you tie up with system integrators such as Wipro or TCS who have experience in servicing both telecom and non-telecom clients?

Our value-added partnerships include the system integrators. We give support in terms of finance, credit, solutions, services and faster response. We also work with different SIs on a case-by-case basis. We have initiated talks with the top 20 system integrators in the country.

What are your plans to strengthen your resources to be directed towards the new business?

This year, we got to the point where we have 200 employees in our sales department. By the end of 2012, we are looking at having 400 sales people on board. We have about 100 employees who are working in Bengaluru and are dedicated to R&D only for enterprise customers. In the last few months, over a hundred people have been hired for the enterprise business. We will be creating more jobs and positions for this segment of the business.

What are the key technology areas that you plan to focus on?

Desktop virtualization is a potential solution for any enterprise with over 200 desktops. This technology helps an enterprise reduce TCO by 30% in three years. It can also help businesses improve efficiency by as much as ten times. The Cloud solution fits an individual as well. Today you might have a desktop, laptop or tablet but soon all of these devices will be linked to the Cloud. We are the only vendors to provide an end-to-end solution from the network to the desktop, network to servers, storage and user hardware to software virtualization.

Has security been a matter of concern during your discussions with the vendors whom you look upon as potential partners?

We believe there are no security issues with Huawei products. This is a media created concept. There are no official concerns regarding our products. Huawei has signed the Telecom Service Provider agreement to be compliant with the requirements of the Indian government.

We have consciously decided to be more transparent, unlike in the past. The people should be able to identify Huawei as a company that offers great technology for telecom service providers, enterprises or individuals. In India, we offer services to 250 mn people directly or indirectly. We want to change the misconstrued perception.