Features, Interviews, Technology

“Our technology is constantly evolving”: NetApp’s Fadi Kanafani

Fadi Kanafani, Managing Director and General Manager – Middle East, NetApp, discusses the evolution of video surveillance technologies and the role that storage solutions play in supporting this transformation.

Fadi Kanafani, regional director, Middle East and Africa, NetApp
Fadi Kanafani, NetApp

Can you discuss what NetApp highlighted at this year’s Intersec?

At this year’s Intersec, NetApp’s platform was geared for intelligent video applications. These applications were developed with the aim of helping organisations modernise their video surveillance infrastructure. Participating at Intersec gave us the opportunity to demonstrate our expertise in this sector and how we can help businesses get more out of data by using AI-driven analytics to derive information that they can work with. NetApp also showcased its relationship with three alliance partners: Atos, Axis and VMS. Together, we complete an offering and demonstrate our integration when we go to customers. NetApp’s E-Series storage offers VMS and analytics technologies direct, super-fast access to data along with ensuring reliability, speed, and scalability.

How has the surveillance storage market grown over the years and what are the trends organisations should look out for in this space in 2020?

In the Middle East, we see emerging demand for security and surveillance. Video surveillance technology has been developing in leaps and bounds and the storage solutions to support it have also been evolving. Businesses aim to get more out of their surveillance data to make better and faster decisions and to ensure swift operations for their security teams. In addition, advances in camera technology place extreme demands on video surveillance storage infrastructure. Organisations are beginning to realise that their video surveillance system is much more than just cameras and software. Storage is the backbone of today’s video surveillance systems. At NetApp, our technology is constantly evolving to ensure that we deliver what the market needs. Growth has been accelerating from a physical security perspective and we have seen development not only in the UAE but in Saudi Arabia and the region as well.

How can the company’s offerings enable smart and safe cities?

When you say smart, you have to ensure that you have the right infrastructure and right application in place to render it as smart. It also requires the eyes to see what’s going on, to see the trends, if its related to traffic or people walking around in the late night or if its related to a shopping mall and understanding the needs of your customers etc. The common denominator for all this is a robust infrastructure that NetApp provides. We have been in that business for over 20 years and we’ve sold a million systems that has made physical and video surveillance solutions possible.

How do you market your technologies to your channel ecosystem?

NetApp has its presence in three different countries in the Middle East. However, the size of the business is so large that it’s going to be naïve on our part to believe we can cover all that business. We operate in a two-tier model – NetApp to the distributor, distributor to the partner channel and then to the end customer. The landscape for storage devices has also changed and evolved rapidly. NetApp has stepped up to meet this challenge by providing the proper training to ensure its success.

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