CyprusProfile talks to Alex Mouradian, Sales Director Hellas, Cyprus & Malta of SAP Cyprus Ltd, on key areas of opportunity or growth, and expectations for Cyprus in 2018
Evaluating the results and trends of last year I expect that the financial services, wholesale distribution and retail sectors will continue going through a major transformation. The financial services sector has already invested two years reorganizing and adapting to the new reality. In 2018, it is a matter of refocusing on innovation and differentiating services the same way banks typically do with IT. With regards to the wholesale sector, it needs to rethink its value proposition. The old days of the Cypriot wholesaler to import, store and distribute with a healthy margin, are coming to an end. Competition is greater, and exclusivity is no longer there, it is much easier to have multiple representatives of global brands, which is pushing them to rethink their distribution channels. This is why, we have recently seen third-party logistics companies appearing in Cyprus. The retail sector has changed completely, the consumer is more brand and price-aware. The typical Cypriot consumer is highly educated by EU standards and has choices, this pushes you to have your own value proposition, whether you’re a start-up or a large retail chain.
Regarding innovation technologies I am confident that technology will continue driving all businesses forward, with everyone relying on it to advance and bring change. We have seen and anticipate that we will continue seeing this trend in Cyprus, with a growing demand in both IT-related services and staff. The cloud is the driving force of the IT industry. Everything is going on the cloud with all mega vendors having invested in it, and SAP is leading the way in many of these areas. The internet of things (IOT) is growing and technology is now allowing us to digitize things we could never even imagine before. Additionally, the new Blockchain technology has the potential to revolutionize how businesses operate. At SAP, we see blockchain as a promising way to simplify complex multi-party processes and create trust among participants. We’re using our expertise in 25 industries and across all lines of business to actively explore blockchain technology, and help our customers capitalize on its potential. SAP Leonardo, our digital innovation system, includes some early-stage blockchain capabilities, and integrates them with other breakthrough technologies – such as the IoT and machine learning. The general concept is that new technologies allow us to rethink our business models and how we live, this is unprecedented. The challenge for all of us is to explore how to achieve a competitive edge. Technology by itself is useless, the key lies in usage.
As SAP, in 2018, we celebrate 20 successful years in Cyprus and our strategic goal remains constantly the same: to continue helping our customer run better by sharing knowledge and offering cutting-edge technology solutions, focus on strengthening our customer and partner relationships and investing in our people so that together, as an ecosystem, we achieve greater results in the years to come.
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