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The CEO of Logicalis has shared thoughts on what areas will be driving the business this year, with security, artificial intelligence (AI) and sustainability vying to be top of the list.
The channel player’s CEO, Bob Bailkoski, is feeling optimistic about the year ahead and in getting to a point where customers are more comfortable making IT investments.
There are three areas that are dominating customer conversations around artificial intelligence, security and sustainability. Users want to unlock the promised benefits of AI, know they have to protect their data, and acknowledge that – with it revealed that 2023 was the hottest ever – the quest to get to carbon neutral must continue.
On the AI front, it’s clear customers are embracing the technology, and 2024 will see sales of technologies that are capable of exploiting artificial intelligence rise further.
“Broadening out AI data in itself will continue to be a really important topic for our customers, as well as taking advantage of the benefits that artificial intelligence may be able to bring to our customers. They need to make sure that their data is governed and is structured in a way that allows AI to maximise its potential in their organisation,” he said.
Protecting data is not a choice. The area of security is always on the boil and is expected to ramp up even further, with Cisco’s acquisition of Splunk closing at some point this year.
“That, when complete, will be a big boost to [Cisco’s] security offering. In the meantime, we’ve been building our own security expertise in Logicalis to help our customers cope with with that security piece. Overall, globally building our capability will help our customers bolster their defences against that increasingly sophisticated cyber threat. We’ve got a number of offers that customers could take advantage of,” said Bailkoski.
Sustainability was a big topic at Logicalis last year, and that is not going to change. The firm has taken steps to update the market on its progress towards net zero.
“We’ve released statements of our environmental shape outlining our emissions, targets and the policies that were put in place,” he said.
The firm followed that up by adding more features to its Managed Digital Fabric platform earlier this week, sharing the lessons it has learnt with its customers.
“One of the key features of that platform is that it gives customers a carbon footprint score – a sustainability score, if you like. This keeps the topic of sustainability at the heart of every conversation that we have with our customers – we’ve given them information about the environment that we look after for them and the carbon footprint of that, which prompts discussions about how they can improve that.
“We’re really willing to share our story with customers and with competitors, as well as with vendors, to help everyone on that journey from a sustainability point of view,” he added.
Logicalis wraps up its fiscal year at the end of February, but looking beyond that, Bailkoski is aiming to continue working closely with its customer base to generate further growth.
“Having demonstrated some good outcomes for our customers, I’m more optimistic about 2024, because the first step from a partner’s perspective around enabling growth is to develop those trusted relationships, which we got plenty of examples of in calendar year 2023,” he said.
“We haven’t seen our customers slow down at all. And, in fact, many are picking up the pace precisely because of those topics that I mentioned earlier. Security will continue to be a very big topic. Lots of customers investment funds will be directed towards making sure that their cyber defences are as strong as possible in 2024.
“That will be a table stakes investment that all of our customers will need to make the opportunity around productivity, efficiency and innovation that AI and data management brings, and it will be a big source of investment,” he said.
He added that sustainability was also top of mind, joining the reasons to feel confident that ’24 would be more positive.
“That will be another area of expenditure and joint investment for our customers and for Logicalis. I think, for those reasons, I’m very optimistic about 2024,” he said.