The US hardware and software provider Oracle is looking to double its workforce in the Middle East and Africa within the next five years, according to the company's president.
Oracle chose Dubai as a launch pad for its global cloud computing initiative yesterday to highlight the significance of the region for both the company and the development of technology.
"We are in the region to ensure our commitment. This is a high-growth region, and there is a lot of IT opportunity in this region," said Mark Hurd, the global president of Oracle, in a speech.
The company is looking to open new offices and development centres to boost its Oracle Development Initiative, which aims to educate 500,000 students throughout the Middle East and Africa about technology and to get Oracle products in their hands This will benefit the company in multiple ways, said Mr Hurd.
"They can join Oracle, our partners, or they can become our customers," he said.
"The number one issue we have in the region is finding great people. We are investing heavily and hiring technical people, people that can help us from an architecture, pre-sales, sales and support perspective," said Mr Hurd, who refused to give any indication of the amount the company is planning to invest in the region.
He also declined to reveal the number of staff the company currently employs in the region.
With an estimated 50 billion devices expected to be connected to the internet by 2020, up from 9 billion last year, Oracle is expecting demand for cloud computing to rise.
"We have taken a very aggressive approach to the cloud. We haven't just released one application. We have announced all three elements," said Mr Hurd, referring to infrastructure, platform and software services as cloud computing solutions.
With such a high number of connected devices, data and growth of data are among the biggest problems facing companies, pushing the need for cloud computing solutions.
"Some companies are growing their data 40 per cent per year. Most of our customers spend US$7,000 [Dh25,709] to $8,000 per terabyte of data and most of our customers spend 10 per cent of their IT budget on storage," said Mr Hurd.
Oracle's global sales revenues are estimated at $40 billion to $50bn. Its revenues from cloud computing already exceed $1bn. The company has spent about $14bn in research and development over the past three years.