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NCR overhauls services arm

NCR overhauls services arm

NCR has announced an overhaul of its global services division in an effort to shake its 'product support' tag and push into the lucrative enterprise solutions sector.

"The move will change the perception of what we are in the market from a break-and-fix manufacturer to a provider of high-end e-business infrastructure and management services," said Josh Claman, NCR's vice president of Asia Pacific worldwide services.

"We want people to see NCR's capability to plan, build, implement and manage robust turnkey infrastructures for our customers," he adds. "Most people know NCR as the world's largest manufacturer of point of sale (POS) systems and automatic teller machines (ATM), while the corporation has expanded its range to include multi-processor computers, data warehousing solutions and telecommunications solutions."

The directional change has been spurred by the rampant growth in ebusiness infrastructure and WAN deployment and management. "In 2000, NCR Worldwide Services generated around $US2.8 billion in services globally which accounted for more than 45 per cent of the corporate revenue," Claman said.

Booming uptake in India and China is adding 50 staff per quarter to NCR's services division, according to Claman, and the firm is staring down the barrel of 400 per cent growth this year. "India has serious infrastructure problems which they are keen to outsource. We received more orders last week than total revenue last year," he said. By retaining ownership of the infrastructure asset and the people to manage it, NCR is also edging itself into a potentially lucrative monopoly position.

The company is not blind to the dangers involved in such rapid expansion. "If we stagnate in the current growth we will probably start to lose money, but we are constantly changing our direction to match the demand of customers," Claman said.

NCR is keen to exploit the uniformity of its global matrix which allows a multinational corporation to install a solution across all its global offices without negotiating the red tape in each different country.

Claman believes managing a multinational services arm under the one organisation is where a lot of vendors have struggled and sought to outsource or partner with services companies.

"There are hundreds of services companies in the Asia Pacific but very few are able to roll-out consistently and seamlessly across the region and around the globe," he said. "People don't want to have to deal with 50 or 60 different offices, they just want to deal with the one person in the Australian office."


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