FASTEST-GROWING LATAM CLOUD MARKET

Mexico 2020 | TELECOMS & IT | VIP INTERVIEW

TBY talks to Paul Maya, CEO Mexico of Atos, on North American markets, Industry 4.0, and fintech developments.

What makes North America your largest global business unit (GBU), and what role does Mexico play within that unit?

Based on business volume, a GBU can be a country like France or Germany. In the Americas, our business is split into two regions: North America—which includes Canada, the US, Mexico, and Central America, and South America- which includes Colombia, Brazil, and the rest of the South cone. From a business perspective, North America is the largest GBU for the group from an external revenue perspective. Mexico holds strategic value as we have hybrid operations. We operate as a global delivery center (GDC) based in Monterrey, supporting US contracts along with some other global contracts based in Europe. We also support our contracts based in Mexico. North America is the largest GBU in good part, as the US is the largest IT consumer market in the world with the majority of the Fortune 500 corporation headquarters. Our strategy in Mexico is to support US contracts, optimizing operation costs on a constant basis. These are the main advantages versus other countries with offshore operations like India and Malaysia.

How did Mexico become a leader in terms of incorporating cloud systems in Latin America?

Mexico's geographical location has several advantages. One of them is having the largest foreign investor as a neighbor: the US. Moreover, both countries have a similar business culture. If a cloud or hybrid cloud project becomes a major trend in the US, Mexico is next in line. We are likely the leader in Latin America in terms of incorporating the latest technologies. Brazil is also fairly successful, though it has strict regulations for doing business outside of Brazil, which makes it more complicated. Another item that separates Mexico from the rest of Latin America is the number and variety of trade agreements, as there are several signed with different countries and blocks. Overall, Mexico leads the use and adoption of cloud systems in Latin America.

What is your current market share in Mexico, and what strategies do you have to increase it?

Our current market share is very low at the moment because the sector is still niche. Our plan is to grow as much as possible and compete with those with a large market share. One of our main objectives is to rapidly develop our Industry 4.0 capabilities, and we are working on digital transformation and Internet of Things (IoT) POVs and projects already with some major corporations. We plan to move faster with our hybrid cloud project, IoT, cybersecurity and digital workplace. These are the four areas we are using to trigger growth in Mexico. One differentiator is our global presence. We can support global corporations based in the US or Europe to understand the market in Mexico and help them adapt solutions to any local regulations or requirements. Another key advantage is our large footprint in Mexico, which includes our large group of engineers and subject matter experts.

Regarding the digital transformation, what are the most important elements every company should invest in?

Every C-level of our client base wants to increase revenue and improve operating margins or cash flow. If an IoT project can help in any of those three areas, they should pay attention to it. Basically, an IoT project connects things via the internet to an advanced analytics machine or appliance that can detect the interactions and give recommendations according to the process in real time. If companies use the right approach to analyze the data, it can help improve delivery cycles, parts, and logistics, all for proactive procurement and maintenance. For example, an IoT project can help reduce maintenance budgets by up to 20 percent, which is a good number for a large manufacturing facility.

What are some of the main projects you are working on in Mexico, and which companies are you collaborating with?

One of our main sectors in Mexico is manufacturing. Within manufacturing, the automotive segment is one that has been growing the most. Some of our main projects include infrastructure projects, digital workplaces, service desk capabilities, transformation of the service desks, global SAP roll-outs, aligning local operations with global headquarters guidelines or standards. In addition, we support hybrid cloud projects that help clients transform legacy infrastructure into public or private clouds. The main way to achieve the efficiencies that each industry needs is through IoT projects of predictive analytics, robotics and artificial intelligence (AI). We can talk about manufacturing, but the financial sector is also advancing, with fintech initiatives for example. Some say it represents a risk to a well-established bank, though some of the major banks are already transforming into fintechs in some areas. Eventually, that will be the future. Fintech is a financial service someone can get without human intervention. For example, a user will log on to a website and provide information in order to apply for a car loan, home loan, investment or mortgage without having to see anyone in person. More traditional banks are offering such tools and services already with very low or zero human intervention.