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January 3, 2013

Bull UK & Ireland strengthens management team

New sales and services directors as firm aims for 'Bull 3.0'

By Jason Stamper

Bull UK & Ireland announced the appointment of sales director, Nayan Kotecha and services director, Jackie Raybould to its senior management team. Both took up their new posts at the start of December.

As sales director, Kotecha is responsible for framework, technology integrator and managed services sales. Andrew Carr, CEO, Bull UK & Ireland said, "Nayan has extensive experience in the UK commercial and public sectors and will bring fresh impetus, drive and ideas to the sales team to ensure we deliver sustained growth."

Previously, Kotecha was responsible for commercial sales within IT services at Capita. Prior to that, he worked as a regional sales manager for ComputerLand.

"I’m excited to be joining Bull at such a pivotal stage in its development," he said. "Having seen the progress made over the past two years, I am looking forward to supporting Bull’s continued growth in line with the ambitious expansion plans outlined in the Bull 3.0 strategy."

"The company consistently demonstrates the capability of competing in this market with the flexible and agile approach already enjoyed by our many customers; and in my view this differentiates it in our marketplace," he added. "In contrast, other larger, mid-tier managed service and infrastructure integrators have struggled to retain these qualities as they grow."

In line with Bull 3.0, Kotecha will concentrate on driving sales growth, with an initial emphasis on managed services and infrastructure projects. "I will be concentrating, in particular, in growing Bull’s commercial business, to complement our strong presence in the public sector," he added.

Meanwhile Jackie Raybould is said to bring a wealth of experience in UK and international managed services to her new role. In it, she is responsible for all Bull UK & Ireland service delivery and operations.

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Previously, she was international services director at IT solutions provider, Specialist Computer Centres, where she was responsible for strategic managed services customers and developing an international centre of excellence.

Aligning with Bull 3.0, Raybould’s role will be focused on ensuring that the company’s services delivery capability can support Bull’s key initiatives around cloud and managed services; information management, including big data storage and advisory services, and high-performance computing (HPC).

Raybould said: "Bull is a well-recognised brand in the design, delivery and support of mission critical infrastructures and notably in HPC where we have a great team of consultants and engineers who are experts in supporting and maintaining that approach. So, for me the key challenge going forward is to bring the other aspects of our service up to the same level. We want to ensure Bull becomes well-known not only as a provider of hardware and consultancy but also as a provider of quality managed services to deliver ongoing support to that equipment – particularly to the corporate market."

Wikipedia reminds us that Bull SAS (also known as Groupe Bull, Bull Information Systems, or simply Bull) is a French-owned computer company headquartered in Les Clayes-sous-Bois, in the western suburbs of Paris. The company has also been known at various times as Bull General Electric, Honeywell Bull, CII Honeywell Bull, and Bull HN.

"Bull was founded in 1931, as H.W. Egli – Bull, to capitalise on the punched card technology patents of Norwegian engineer Fredrik Rosing Bull (1882-1925). After a reorganisation in 1933, with new owners coming in, the name was changed to Compagnie des Machines Bull."

"The company has undergone many takeovers and mergers since its formation. In particular, it has had various ownership relations with General Electric, Honeywell, and NEC from the 1960s to the 1980s; and with Motorola, Debeka, and France Télécom more recently. It acquired Honeywell Information Systems in the late 1980s, and later also had a share of Zenith Data Systems and Packard Bell. Bull was nationalised in 1982 and was merged with most of the rest of the French computer industry. In 1994 the company was re-privatised," Wikipedia states.

Recent major products include the Bull NovaScale family of Itanium 2-based servers for High Performance Computing and commercial applications and the high-availability Bull Escala family of IBM Power5-architecture servers. Bull also has a Bull DPS-9000 mainframe computer range and a blade server line. All new products are available with a distribution of Linux.

Bull also offers services, including IT consulting, IT integration and IT operations.

In its latest financial statement just over 57% of its business came from its native France, 29% in the rest of Europe, 5.7% in the Americas and 8.6% rest of world. It made 1.3bn euros in 2011 and 616.7m euros in its first half of 2012. First half revenue grew a meagre 0.7% year-on-year.

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