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Mon 25 Feb 2008 04:00 AM

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Get to know: Andrew Calthorpe

Andrew Calthorpe, Chief Executive Officer, Condo-Protego.

What is your career history to date?

I had been working for IBM in the UK and was on the London-end of a deal that originated in Dubai, and during conversations with GBM Dubai a job was offered that I took. I later joined EMC as their first local hiring in the Middle East, then was with one of their former partners before starting up Condo-Protego with my wife and business partner, Savitha.

Which IT industry figure do you admire and why?

Michael Dell. He started his businesses at a very young age, worked hands-on in the business and developed it to a global leader. And then even when the business became as big as it is now, he has remained at the helm of it. My admiration is in the fact that not only was he smart and determined enough to grow the business, but he also became one of the world's leading CEOs.

How would you describe your management style?

I don't consider myself as a general sat behind a desk. I am very much a ‘field officer' in the trenches so my management style is very much to lead from the front, lead by example and know my customers.

What do you enjoy most about working in the Middle East IT market?

If you are working elsewhere in the world it is unlikely that you would get to visit all of that country's largest datacenters every week, perhaps just one or two. Working as an enterprise solution provider here provides this level of access and exposure to some of the world-class datacenters in this country.

How do you relax outside of the work environment?

With a new business there is very little time outside of work, but there is family stuff like movies and eating out, trying to fit in a little squash or tennis and watching every Manchester United game. I am also trying to get a book written and we love to travel too.

What do you dislike most about working in the Middle East IT market?

There are too many IT companies in the local market who add products and manufacturers to their portfolio based upon a single opportunity or to collect ‘badges' - and too many vendors who allow this. The market then becomes flooded with often unskilled and certainly unfocused firms, who only ever seem to focus on these products after a highly-focused company has generated an opportunity for them.

What is the most valuable business lesson you have learnt?

The only way to be successful over and over again is to always be honest and treat everyone fairly. You never know who you might be dealing with again in a few years' time. Any indiscretions will always be remembered, and you only get one chance to make a first impression.

What are your top channel tips for the next 12 months?

Resellers really need to get themselves focused, build up the highest levels of skills in a set of solutions and not try to be all things to all men just for a quick sale.

Andrew Calthorpe, Chief Executive Officer, Condo-Protego.

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Ahmed Wajeeh Kamal 12 years ago

I have very recently joined a company which is dealing in Infrastructure solutions for datacenters, that is it does the passive part of a datacenter project . i am greatly impressed by the evaluation of IT industry in UAE by Mr. Andrew, and look forward to a be a part of this growing industry and build myself a career in this field. awkamal@gmail.com