Q: Which segments of the IT industry are most promising?
A: Fintech holds about 15 percent promise; data and analytics, e-commerce, marketplace and enterprise software, and cloud computing around 12 percent; and app and software development is at nine percent.

Billions of device sensors obtain information from various sources that must be collated, analysed and processed. The challenge is to unlock them to benefit industry and the public.

Q: Is enough being done to harness local IT talent?
A: No. The UK and France respectively invest over GBP 6.8 billion and 2.4 billion pounds annually – with a spend of 1.7 percent of GDP by the UK and 2.2 percent by France. Sri Lanka is at the other end of the spectrum with R&D spending at only 0.1 percent of GDP.

The UNESCO Institute for Statistics says global spending on R&D reached a record high of almost US$ 1.7 trillion with some 10 countries accounting for 80 percent of that.

Q: What are the latest IT trends or innovations?
A: Currently, IoT and blockchain, fintech, augmented reality, AI and bots, and quantum computing. In the long term, whole industries will transform with ‘permissioned’ and ‘permissionless’ ledgers. The combined technology of AI and IoT will disrupt entire industries. AI and machine learning are among the most exciting concepts to benefit industry.

Q: How would you describe the competition?
A: Our technology strategy revolves around our vision, mission, and marketing and sales objectives. A strong foundation is built in working to achieve our vision – i.e. to become the country’s premier and most admired ICT services and solutions provider, valued for our advice, innovation and execution.

While competition is intense, our unrelenting focus on achieving targets is augmented through technology road mapping, the technology S-curve and consistent R&D, interwoven into a seamless strategic multilevel focus from group to business, product and project.

Q: And what are the key challenges?
A: In a fast-paced and rapidly evolving industry, the expertise and skills required to always be futuristic in ideas and execution is mandatory. There has to be adequate investment in R&D and innovation, and cybersecurity too. The main challenge is to ensure a consistent customer experience.

Q: What gives Bartleet Innovative Technologies (BartleetIT) a competitive edge?
A: As an ICT cluster, we have been at the forefront of innovation and technological change in Sri Lanka for over 30 years. The Bartleet brand enhances the trust and confidence placed in us by customers.

Q: How do you view BartleetIT’s role in the local ICT space?
A: With the global digital tech economy growing more rapidly than any other sector, we see huge opportunities for emerging nations such as Sri Lanka. We intend to become a key player in the country’s digital tech market with a goal of commanding a share of three to five percent by 2021 and 10 percent by 2025.

Q: What are BartleetIT’s plans and strategies to optimise on advantages?
A: With immense potential for companies such as ours in the next five to 15 years, our plans and strategies are aligned with our tech strategy and road map – founded on our vision, mission, principles and priorities.

While our pursuit of cutting-edge innovation will view collaboration, capital investment, efficiency and human capital as top priorities, customer relationships will remain at the nucleus of our plans.

Omar Lebbé

Telephone 4324900/4335012