Pakistan grab two golds & five silvers at APICTA 2011 in Pattaya Thailand
They came, they saw, they conquered. That describes it all. As Pakistan’s name was called again and again earlier this evening at the Asia Pacific ICT Awards (APICTA) 2011, my heart was bursting with pride and a sense of accomplishment. Team work had allowed us to get this far. From the judges, to the mentors – and the nominees, the innovative products, the presentations, the Q&A, the sleepless nights, the hours of work, rehearsals, dry runs – it has all been worth it!
Pakistan was amongst the leaders at the APICTA event this evening. We were right up there with Hong Kong, Australia and Malaysia. Our friends from around the region came and shook our hands and remarked “Pakistan certainly has done well!” One could see the respect in their eyes, one could hear it in their voices. They had recognized the fact that Pakistan had truly arrived!
Team Pakistan comprised of 18 products which were benchmarking themselves with 162 competing products from the Asia Pacific region. 48 judges spent two long days evaluating and assessing the “best of the best” from the region.
Pakistan walked away with two golds in the e-Health and e-Logistics & SCM categories and 5 silvers in the Communication, Financial, Security, E-Inclusion & E-Community and E-Government categories. The Center for Advanced Research in Engineering (CARE) once again swept the Awards with the gold in e-Health and the silver in Communication, Security and E-Government categories. Lumensoft Technologies went for gold in the e-Logistics category with Infotech Group taking the silver in the Financial Apps category and Engro-Orix taking the silver in the E-Inclusion & E-Community category. Complete results have been announced on Jawwad’s blog.
We had been worrying about those who didn’t quite make it to the top slots from Pakistan but it was great to see how involved they became in celebrating the wins we had. All of them rose to the occasion and surrounded the winners, hugging them, patting them on the back, showing all-in-all how much the wins meant to Pakistan.
The CARE team comprising of Dr. Shoab Khan, Dr. Zaheer Ahmed and Dr. Mohsin were over the moon. They had worked very hard to get to this stage of the competition this year and as they went up to the stage over and over again to claim their rightful awards, several judges went up to them and offered their congratulations, told them how impressive they were and what a great contribution they were making to the country. Some of them offered to work with them, to form collaborations, to help position their products in other countries.
Abdul Aziz, CEO of Lumensoft, was competing for the second time at APICTA with a maturer product and a presentation that was crisp and clear and delivered extremely well. He last presented in Melbourne in 2009. When I asked him what he felt was the difference between his two attempts, he said unabashedly “My presentation in Melbourne was pathetic – no wonder I didn’t win!” A great example of a CEO who shed his ego, listened to the advice given by mentors and gave a 100 %. Well done!
The Infotech team was just as willing to take feedback and incorporate it into the build up for the Awards. Amir and Suresh presented well, answered every question with clarity and gave it their best. The Silver in the Financial Application category is a difficult one to attain because Infotech was up against some stiff competition. Preparation paid off in the end.
The Engro/Orix team were stupendous in the way they presented Eman in the E-Inclusion and E-Community category. Atif and Zainab put forward a presentation that wowed the judges and got for them the silver. It is a wonderful program and we hope that this win eggs them on to do other more interesting things with technology. As some of us are fond of saying, 125000 technology professionals cannot move ahead into the new developed age without taking the rest of Pakistan with us. It is for this reason that automation products like Eman are extremely important to the development of our community and our rural sector. Thanks guys for a terrific product. We hope to see more from you in the future.
We have great plans for Brunei in 2012. Let us put the plans in action now!