Intelligent CIO Middle East Issue 47 | Page 80

t cht lk The new AWS Middle East (Bahrain) Region offers three Availability Zones at launch. AWS Regions are composed of Availability Zones, which each comprise of at least one data centre and are located in separate and distinct geographic locations with enough distance to significantly reduce the risk of a single event impacting business continuity, yet near enough to provide low latency for high availability applications. Each Availability Zone has independent power, cooling and physical security, and is connected via redundant, ultra-low-latency networks. AWS customers focused on high availability can design their applications to run in multiple Availability Zones to achieve greater fault-tolerance. AWS infrastructure regions meet the highest levels of security, compliance and data protection. Customers welcome the new AWS Middle East (Bahrain) Region Millions of active customers are using AWS each month in over 190 countries around the world, including tens of thousands of customers in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). Enterprises across the region are moving to AWS to become more agile and innovate, and include Al Jouf Cement, Al Tayer Group, Arab Banking Corporation (Bank ABC), Aramex, Bahrain Bourse, Bank Al-Etihad, Batelco, Emirates NBD, Flydubai, Gulf News, Hassan Allam, Lulu International Exchange, MBC Group, OSN, Seera Group, Union Insurance and Virgin Middle East. Public sector organisations, including Bahrain government ministries, such as the Ministry “ THE CLOUD HAS THE CHANCE TO UNLOCK DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION IN THE MIDDLE EAST. 80 INTELLIGENTCIO “ DEVELOPERS, START-UPS AND ENTERPRISES, AS WELL AS GOVERNMENT, EDUCATION AND NON-PROFIT ORGANISATIONS CAN NOW RUN THEIR APPLICATIONS AND SERVE END- USERS FROM DATA CENTRES LOCATED IN THE MIDDLE EAST. of Education, Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Information Affairs, Ministry of Labor and Social Development and Bahrain iGA, as well as other public sector organisations such as Bahrain Polytechnic, Communications and Information Technology Regulatory Authority of Kuwait (CITRA), Mumtalakat, Paris Sorbonne AD, Tamkeen and the University of Bahrain, are also using AWS to drive cost savings, accelerate innovation and better serve the citizens of the region. Well established family businesses in the Middle East are also moving to AWS to become more agile and innovative. Saudi Arabia’s Abdul Latif Jameel is one of the most respected family-owned businesses across the Middle East, and operates in over 30 countries worldwide, with diversified interests in major sectors including transportation, energy and environmental services, financial services, and land and real estate. Faisal Alsamannoudi, Vice Chairman, Abdul Latif Jameel Commercial Development Company Ltd, said: “We welcome the opening of the AWS Middle East Region and see it as a real opportunity to bring more efficiency and innovation to our business, in a secure way. We started our AWS journey with Abdul Latif Jameel Commercial Development Company, in Jeddah, by migrating critical HR management systems covering seven different companies – a process that took us less than one month and brought savings of up to 60%, compared to our previous solution. “With AWS, we are becoming more agile and able to innovate quickly across different lines of business.” Another regional enterprise moving to AWS is the Al Tayer Group, one of the largest privately held family-run conglomerates in the MENA region. Al Tayer Group has interests in automobile sales and services, luxury and lifestyle retail and hospitality. Headquartered in the UAE, the group operates in 12 countries in the Middle East and manages over 200 stores. Mohamed Al Fayed, Senior Vice President of OmniChannel, Al Tayer Retail, said: “This news from AWS is fantastic as we continue accelerating our cloud adoption. Using AWS, we were able to become more agile and reliably launched five e-commerce platforms, such as Mamas & Papas,, and Ounass alongside Android and iOS apps, all within a year. “We rely on several AWS managed database services such as Amazon Aurora, where we were able to cut costs by 40%, while increasing performance by four times, compared with proprietary database technologies. We also leverage AWS spot instances to reduce operational cost by 79%. “We see great potential to improve our business even further with the new AWS Middle East Region, which will enable us to serve our end customers with even lower latency.” Government organisations are also working with AWS to lower costs and better serve citizens in the region. The Bahrain Information and eGovernment Authority (iGA) is responsible for ICT procurement for the Bahrain government and is leading the government’s migration project to support the country’s Cloud First policy.