cloud in government

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Recently our company Chairman introduced me to His Excellency Jan Mikolaj, the Deputy Prime Minister of the Slovak Republic and Education Minister.  He was was on a trade mission to Silicon Valley and I had 30 minutes to pitch why the Cloud should be rolled out across Slovakia’s schools and universities.

He explained that Slovakia is dominated by Cisco, Hewlett-Packard and Microsoft and the meeting concluded with his hardest question which was the most satisfying to answer:  “How can GoPC compete against Microsoft’s huge discounts”.

I explained that “Even if Microsoft provide their software completely free it is still far cheaper to use because (i) the cost of deploying is so small compared to a normal PC deployment, (ii) it recycles existing PC hardware and eliminates file servers; (iii) the support costs after implementation are minimal”.  He understood, liked it and next introduced me to his entourage of advisors.

Jan Mikaloj speaks perfect English and his son studies at the University of Sydney.  It was incredible to pitch at a national level for use throughout a small European nation.   This meeting introduced us into Hewlett-Packard in Palo Alto with direct involvement from HP’s Director responsible for European government sales.   From our perspective HP is still trying to work out how to be a cloud provider but we established that GoPC is complementary technology for HP.

Graeme Speak

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