The fight for enterprise IT sovereignty in 2019

Ahmed Adly, senior director at Oracle MENA.
Updated 21 January 2019
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The fight for enterprise IT sovereignty in 2019

In 2018, emerging technologies such as AI, automation, data and blockchain have achieved much, but failed to win the big cash prize and become the overall winner. Which of these will become the overall champion in 2019? Ahmed Adly, senior director at cloud computing leader Oracle MENA, lists his predictions for 2019:

Stealth adoption of AI

Artificial intelligence will be key — but only if companies can tame this data athlete, and understand how to apply it within the confines of the business. With Ovum’s ICT Enterprise Insights Survey anticipating that 60 percent of organizations will have an enterprise-wide strategy for AI in 2019, we expect a lot more companies to look for practical ways to bring AI into the business; and a key path will be through having AI embedded into their applications. 

Increase in productivity

One of the key business drivers for AI adoption is its immense power to increase human productivity and business efficiency. A recent Oracle survey of international senior decision-makers showed 42 percent are already looking to AI technology to improve efficiency within their organization. Looking ahead, we predict that by 2025, the productivity gains delivered by AI and augmented experiences could be as high as 50 percent compared to today’s operations. 

Autonomous database

Gartner predicts that by 2022, 90 percent of corporate strategies will explicitly mention information as a critical enterprise asset, with analytics becoming an essential competency. As the levels of data currently at hand are too much for humans to handle, a new approach is needed. Oracle has already taken the next step in extreme automation with the Oracle Autonomous Database.

Trust in blockchain 

From being the new kid on the block, distrusted for its association with bitcoin, blockchain will not only start to become more commonplace in business, it will also become the king of transparency and trust in 2019. The technology is being used to certify the ethical production of extra virgin olive oil, for tracking solar energy usage and to bring a single source of truth into the documentation processes underpinning the global shipping industry. In 2019, we we will see it being used in even more broader contexts — from verifying the authenticity of precious stones and tracking the source of food contaminations to confirming the production of drugs in accordance with industry regulations. 


Real estate landscape to be explored

Updated 54 min 26 sec ago
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Real estate landscape to be explored

Informa Middle East, organizer of the Cityscape portfolio of events, will roll out a trio of back-to-back events across Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the UAE between March 24 and April 18.

With the specific market dynamics of each destination being explored through dedicated country events, the 2019 Cityscape series springs into action with Cityscape Egypt at the Egypt International Exhibition Center (EIEC) in Cairo. A two-day conference kick-starts the Egypt schedule on March 24 and 25, before the exhibition takes centerstage from March 27 to 30. 

Cityscape then moves to the Center for Forums and Events in Jeddah, which includes an exhibition from April 5 to 7, before a one-day workshop on April 7. Finally, a return to Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (ADNEC) includes a three-day exhibition from April 16 to 18 with an influential agenda on the lineup at the conference set for April 16.

“It’s a packed three-week schedule with a very distinct market approach and program for each destination,” said Chris Speller, Cityscape group director. “This year more than ever, Cityscape will drill down into the specifics and varied issues affecting each market. While opportunities continue to abound across the region, each market requires very different approaches from consumers, government entities and private developers to realize them. 

“With each market at varying stages of maturity and subject to very different developmental concerns, the conference and exhibition stops in Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Abu Dhabi enable industry professionals and public investors to engage with people at the sharp end of the business, understand and seize opportunities, and network for future growth,” added Speller.

In Egypt, the conference will focus on “Energizing the Market and Reinstating Confidence” with government authorities, experts, and market influencers scheduled to spell out the country’s strategic vision to achieve real estate market maturity. 

Expecting a turnout of more than 40 exhibitors and over 8,000 visitors, Cityscape Jeddah this year looks to align with the goals of the Kingdom’s real estate market in light of its Saudi Vision 2030 economic diversification plan.

“Vision 2030 reforms are expected to attract major investment into a Saudi real estate sector predicted to double its contribution to the national economy right through this decade,” said Speller. 

“Over the past few years, we have witnessed Saudi Arabia make significant strides in attracting foreign and local investment, implementing various urban regeneration initiatives, and investing in infrastructure.”

This recent progress, when aligned with the various projects being green-lit, will no doubt transform the country into a global investment powerhouse. We believe Cityscape Jeddah will help drive investment in the Saudi sector by enhancing its standing as a crucial meeting point for regional and international leaders who can contribute to making Vision 2030 a reality.”

With a focus on “Achieving Diversification and Energizing the Market,” the Jeddah workshops will feature prominent investment panel discussions which dive into how the country’s tourism and hospitality sector agenda can impact Vision 2030. The Cityscape outings in Cairo and Jeddah will both feature dedicated editions of the Cityscape Awards, which recognize and celebrate excellence in real estate development and architecture. 

The UAE capital’s official real estate event platform, Cityscape Abu Dhabi is held under the patronage of Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al-Nahyan, crown prince of Abu Dhabi and deputy supreme commander of the UAE Armed Forces. The one-day conference agenda will explore the future of regulatory and technological innovation with a strong focus on the government sector’s growth strategy for the UAE capital.