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Inheritance, Esprit de Corps, Collaboration

F.Y. Teng | Nov. 4, 2010
Ciscos MD for Singapore and Brunei Irving Tan on the value of job experience, team building and tapping mature markets.

Another important part of our growth platform for the next year will be our business in the area of collaboration. With the acquisition of Tandberg, now we have the ability to architect the business video solution for an enterprise that goes all the way from immersive video to telepresence down to their employees desktops through Tandberg. We are talking to a set of customers that spans Singapore, Europe, North America and the Middle East, and their management is asking, How can we ensure better collaboration across the organisation? How can we share best practice intellectual property in a much more effective manner? Can you architect for me a pervasive business video solution that enables us to do a lot more than just have a conversation over the phone which is tough at times?

Body language communicates a lot and having that personal relationship, even if its just virtual, is very important, and were going to see more and more of that I think, going forward. Well also be looking at how we use video in new and innovative ways to solve some of the other key business challenges.

A very interesting example I have in mind is that of a particular bank we're working with. (I wont mention the name of this bank though.) Now, I am talking about how a bank drives it business based on Telepresence. If Im in the investment bank, if I do a deal, one of the big costs of my deal is actually lawyers feesbecause the lawyers charge by the hour. Today, how do lawyers talk in New York and Singapore when they are trying to close a transaction? Lots of phone calls, which take a long time. But now the banks are looking at using Telepresence, and through that they are compressing the amount of time it takes to go from starting an opportunity to closing a transaction. That translates into a reduction in billing hours and thats the business case theyre using.

Tell us about the Brunei market for you.
Brunei is a fairly small market. Its got a population of 330,000 people. There, we are very targeted and surgical in the segments that we want to go after and its no industry secret. The main segments would be government, the telecom companies…and in Brunei there is an interesting potential customer, which is the royal family itself. So those are the three main segments we are focusing on. We have a very committed set of partners that work with us there. Again that is one of the markets that when I took over I asked the guys, What have we done with Brunei in the past? Not much. So we paid a lot more attention into how to develop the Brunei market. It will never be a major large market for us but I think it has interesting value and if we play our cards right in those three segments, it can be a key growth driver for us.


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