Olivia Lee | Procurri | Cloud Expo Asia | Singapore

Avatar Ben Fower | 22/11/2018

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Olivia Lee, from Procurri, joined us at Cloud Expo Asia in Singapore to talk about maintenance and services in Procurri. Hosted by Lim May-Ann from the Asia Cloud Computing Association.

May-Ann: Today who we have with us is Olivia Lee. Thank you very much for joining us Olivia. Olivia comes to us from Procurri. So, Olivia tell us a little bit about the company but more importantly tell us about yourself and what you do with the company.

Olivia: I look after the maintenance and services business in Procurri APEC. So, APEC is a very exciting climate. I mean, as you know, a lot of the businesses are moving from west to east. They’re looking to set up businesses here and you know, when we first started Procurri about five years ago, I mean, we identified problems that we look to solve. Number one, a lot of,  companies are looking at how to adopt the right strategy whether is it public, hybrid or private cloud and during this phase, a lot of them are also looking at rolling out could be in phases or to look at prolonging the hardware lifespan. So that is one. The second one would be that a lot of the service providers are under tremendous pressure, like a cloud service provider that managed service providers to reduce costs and a large part of the costs come from the capex in particularly the hardware portion. And that’s a problem that we look to solve this in terms of we’ve got a strong emphasis in terms of data security and that is where a lot of people are looking at. Hey, you know, what is the best way to go about to dispose of my data and my assets properly. So, with that I would like to introduce Procurri’s portfolio. I mean we have the hardware segment where we buy and sell them and new inbox and refurbish hardware to meet that need. So, a lot of the Legacy infrastructure and those Legacy applications are running on machines where it is already out of warranty.

May-Ann: It’s just not fashionable. Time to change something.

Olivia: Yeah, just not fashionable. Correct, we do tech refresh, but the environment is just more complex, right? So, that’s where we give them a choice to actually prolong it. So, the second one would be that with, let’s say our hardware sorting capabilities. We are able to provide hardware maintenance to a lot of this kind of complex data centre environment. They don’t really have firmware patches or operate anymore, and they say that everything is running fine and I just need the hardware service. So, we provide that bundled together. We provide hardware as a service model. So, this is an alternate leasing model. Where it’s driven more as a computing power to reduce the course. A lot of the service provider are looking for this kind of one-stop shop to actually put it there and it’s just driven by uncovering power where they don’t need the latest and greatest technology. To give you an example, we have this client that has made some investment in Japan for project A and you know this project A equipment can be used for project B but they’re unable to just move it like that due to their own financial books and stuff like that. So, what we propose is that we do a buyback model. So we buy that which could be a based on their book value based on market value and then because we own it, we redeploy it across five countries, across Thailand, South Korea, Vietnam, Indonesia, as well as the Philippines. So, this is a snippets as to how Procurri will help to resolve the infra problems.

May-Ann: I think that’s really interesting because we talk a lot about environmentalism and electronic waste as a consumer problem. I always thought that the Procurri model was very interesting because of this cognisms that Legacy infrastructure does get stuck with the customer and Legacy infrastructure. You do need to do something with it. But what do you do, and you’ve got book issues, accounting issues. So, I’ve always felt that this is a really interesting value proposition for Procurri when it comes to the development or at least the adoption of this sort of buyback models and the offerings that Procurri has. What’s your snapshot of where the APEC landscape and climate is for the suite of offerings that you have?. Are there a lot of people actually taking up that aspect of, you know, reducing costs, which I’m going to assume is yes. Are there a lot of people taking up this new strategy for purchasing more hardware and are a lot of them ending. Is there a trend of increasing numbers of people actually taking up this idea of hardware by back? What’s the landscape snapshot?

Olivia: I mean the opportunity is huge in the APEC. So, I mean as I’ve mentioned a lot of business are moving over here, but they deal with a lot of issues such as I want to buy this hardware can you help me to clear the customers? So, there are logistics issues. There’re cultural barriers, right? I mean as you know that APEC is a reference Market, there’s language barriers. So, I mean, they need to look for a trusted partner which is why Procurri are a global company? We are listed on the Singapore exchange and even though our Global CEO or Global president is situated in Atlanta in America, but they deliberately make an effort to be headquartered in Singapore. Because I mean in terms of the independent market, we are the first global company to have that stature and we want that stature to give customers the confidence that you know, we have six regional warehouses with an inventory that worth millions of stocks. So, I mean, these are the things that we would try to give to the customer and in return when they look at us they know that they can trust us with let’s say their assets. Enterprise, I say because we know their data centre environment and Etc. So yeah, I mean in terms of the APEC landscape, even though there is a lot of upcoming trends like the IoT,  big data and the fintech and Etc. There are still a lot of Legacy machines and Legacy application that companies have developed over the years and they cannot just switch it like that, it takes time to make phases. It takes a lot of thoughtful planning and yet they still have this budget constraint.

May-Ann: So final question for you in choosing the market gaps that you’re seeing. What are some of the market gaps that you’ve observed? This is where Procurri has fit itself into to solve it. What are some of the solutions that you’ve chosen to offer therefore in terms of these market gaps?

Olivia: So I think I mentioned the three gaps that Procurri hope to fix at a start. So, I’m interested to wrap it up. I think all in all as long as you focus on the infrastructure, which is the bread and butter of all business and all technology behind it. That is where our forte is so if you are a software service provider and you just need a temporary loaner set just to do user acceptance test. Here we are. If you need to do a buy back and lease back to be redeployed in multi-countries we are also one of the key service providers for that and if let’s say you just need a one-stop service to maintain your hardware across let’s say 20 countries or 30 countries then we’re the go-to partner. So, to wrap it up, I think the top problem which I have not really addressed. Is in terms of the IT asset disposition. I mean, we are a Blanco Gold partner. So, rest assured that you know our solution in terms of data eraser adheres to the Department of Defense and also in terms of the right way how to shred away your data. It’s not exactly at the forefront in terms of innovation in fintech but you know, there has to be someone that is grounded to do the bread and butter of the business.

May-Ann: Absolutely. I think that it’s not the sexiest part of the business that disposal of information, but it’s absolutely crucial especially with the discussions around privacy and data protection at the moment. So, I think that’s a critical part. I don’t think it’s a market gap but it’s not exactly the bit that you want to advertise to people.

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