MEEZA, a Qatar Foundation joint venture, was founded as recently as in 2008 in Qatar but is rapidly building up reputation as a managed IT Services and Solutions provider that offers a wide range of services to clients, from creating and managing IT infrastructure to providing technology consulting. It was established to meet the growing need for world-class IT infrastructure and IT services throughout the Middle East and North Africa and contribute to the continued growth and success of Qatar and the Gulf region.
Scott E. MacKenzie, CEO of MEEZA says,” “Our company name, MEEZA, is Arabic for advantage. We live up to our name by granting our clients a unique competitive advantage by bringing world-class IT skills, processes and technology to the market to help them scale rapidly. MEEZA employs only first-rate, fully certified IT professionals who are as passionate about service as they are about technology. “
He adds, “In addition, MEEZA currently holds a unique position in the Qatar market by providing the first Data Centre and Command and Control Centre of their kind in the country.”
It has already pioneered the setup of M-Vault 1 which is the first commercial Tier 3 Data Centre in Doha providing a high level of IT security and availability to its clients. M-Vault 1 has a tri-authentication security system, 25 camera CCTV system, multiple mechanical, electrical and power systems and 99.98% uptime (the equivalent of less than 1.7 hours downtime per year). The first services to be offered from M-Vault 1, to clients such as Vodafone Qatar and Masraf Al Rayan, include managed storage, network and security as well as disaster recovery capabilities.
According to MEEZA, its Command and Control Centre (C3) is the only Managed Services commercial centre of its kind in Qatar, enabling clients to continue providing quality services to their customers with the reassurance of around-the-clock access to information, IT security and peace of mind. The control centre houses a video wall which will display real-time information to MEEZA engineers about the availability, performance and security of clients’ IT systems. Using this data, MEEZA engineers are able to monitor and manage all aspects of their clients’ IT systems and respond immediately and effectively to any issues. The Command and Control Centre is based at Qatar Science and Technology Parand can accommodate up to 50 fully certified engineers who will use the technology to monitor MEEZA’s clients’ IT infrastructure.
MacKenzie adds, “The value that C3 delivers to the market is enhanced by MEEZA’s Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) aligned processes. ITIL is the world standard for best practices relating to the delivery and management of IT Services. All engineers working in the C3 are ITIL certified.”
Focus on SAAS
MEEZA offers a broad portfolio of managed IT Services and Solutions to counter IT-related corporate concerns regarding security, availability, and scalability. These include Consulting Services, Cloud Services, Data Centre Services, Managed Services – which are a variety of IT services where a third party company performs hardware, software, and/or networking activities on behalf of the client and application services.
MacKenzie adds, “MEEZA will be offering Cloud Services to the market, giving businesses access to robust IT infrastructure and the latest applications without having to bear the high costs of ownership and maintenance. The first MEEZA cloud services offering will be Software as a Service including hosted E-mail, SharePoint and website hosting will be released to the market later this year.”
He adds, “We predict a high level of growth in the I.T. services area due to an increased demand and a short supply of technology expertise. This positions MEEZA to best assist companies in supplementing their I.T. services. There is a reason why the region is called “emerging” and it is our core business to leverage our managed services, software-as-a-services, and cloud services to best serve this marketplace.”
Despite the slowdown, the strategic role of IT as a business enabler is not lost on businesses in the region. Companies across the region are realising more and more the strategic value of IT to their businesses and, as a result, the interest in IT Services is seen to be very high. MEEZA believes its primary goal is to help its clients support their customers by providing an efficient, cost-effective and reliable service.
MacKenzie says, “The demand for managed IT services and solutions continues to grow apace in Qatar and the region as businesses look to third parties like MEEZA to manage their IT applications while they concentrate on the all important job of generating growth. There is already an increased dependency on IT services in business, be it online bill payment, access to account information, online shopping or telephone customer services. “
In terms of vertical sectors, the SI sees demand across the board but especially noticing a high level of interest from the banking and financial services sector, Government, Healthcare and Oil and Gas companies.
MacKenzie says, “In particular, small and medium businesses in the region have a high demand for software as a service. This is software hosted by MEEZA and delivered on demand to clients. The benefits of software as a service are low up-front costs, access to greater computing power and a faster installation time with no ongoing maintenance and upgrade headaches.”
MEEZA’s list of clients already has some leading names from the country such as Vodafone Qatar, DohaLand, Masraf Al Rayan and Ministry of Environment. It has deployed some state of the art projects for its clients. For instance, MEEZA’s solution for DohaLand covered a set of diversified aspects including Data Centre Services, Professional Services and Service Desk support. For the Ministry of Environment, MEEZA was tasked with designing and developing a Paperless Conference Solution ( PCS) for a UN environmental conference held in Doha 2008. MEEZA delivered a solution which allowed delegates to contribute to policies, review and amend papers and have access to all meeting documentation and presentations. The result was a reduction in paper use by 86% for the overall event – the equivalent of saving 9,000kim of paper or just over 31 trees.
MEEZA has strong relationships with some leading technology vendors in different technology domains to provide a great breadth and quality of the services and solutions to its clients.
MacKenzie adds ,”We have a strong relationship with Cisco, who we are leveraging for our network and security platform. Microsoft is a key partner for MEEZA in delivering our Software-as-a-Service offerings and VMware is helping us add additional flexibility and value to our clients with their virtualisation platform.”
As it grows, the SI is also looking to broaden its scope to focus more on delivering IT Services to companies across the GCC. To do this, the company is also setting up a Channel to sell MEEZA’s Services. The company expects channel partners will help it to more effectively service the small and medium business segment.
Qatar based MEEZA is positioning itself as one of the new generation IT service providers with considerable expertise in cloud computing and managed services