IBA Group: Improve business performance with change - Sergei Levteev
At a time when businesses are coming under increasing pressure to find cost-effective ways of improving productivity, many are turning to automation and cloud services. CEO Sergei Levteev discusses how IBA Group is adapting to these new technologies
and tailoring them to offer its clients an expansive portfolio of bespoke services.
Sergei Levteev has been the CEO of IBA since the company's inception in 1993, spearheading all aspects of its business efforts, overall vision and strategy. In a period spanning over two decades, he has seen the IT industry evolve at a rapid rate, and as a result, the software and hardware solutions offered by his company have had to keep pace.
"New trends are coming to life, including artificial intelligence, robotics, atomically precise manufacturing and the internet of everything," says Levteev. "IBA responds by applying microelectronics to its products, and developing cloud and near field communication (NFC) solutions. We need to keep expanding our product and service portfolio."
Prior to IBA, Levteev spent four years with the computer engineering association BelNPOVT, an IT organisation of more than 40,000 employees. As deputy general-director there, he earned extensive senior-executive experience, an aspect that has enabled him to excel as head of IBA.
Build a foundation
During his tenure, once small firm has evolved into an international group of over 2,500 employees, and one of the largest providers of IT services and solutions in Eastern Europe. Serving clients in more than 40 countries through offices in ten (including the UK, the US and South Africa), IBA has a number of prestigious businesses on its client portfolio, including IBM, SAP, Microsoft, Oracle, Fujitsu Technology Solutions and Gazprom.
"We have a diversified technology portfolio and many IT leaders have appointed us as their business partner," says Levteev. "The past 20 years have brought a completely new buyer to the limelight, one which is mobile, software-savvy and innovation-oriented. We need to respond proactively, so we've adopted new technologies called CAMSS - cloud, analytics, enterprise mobility, social media and security - moving towards providing an integrated digital platform for the customer."
Cloud computing is a growing line of business for IBA. In order to facilitate this surging demand, it is building a data processing centre for customers in Eastern Europe where the cloud infrastructure is not well developed. It has also seen a huge uptake in its enterprise content management and optimisation of business processes services where it assists clients in organising their companies with the help of Microsoft SharePoint.
"We've developed a solution for document management systems, a collaboration system and a workflow application where a portal serves as a presentation layer," says Levteev. "SharePoint provides integration with external applications and data warehouses. The IBA-developed SharePoint integration components allow the co-existence of software solutions from Microsoft and IBM. Also, we built a Microsoft Solutions Centre of Excellence to accumulate and share knowledge, concentrate experts and amplify their expertise.
"IBA Group applies .Net technologies to develop solutions for the banking and manufacturing industries. These include drivers, libraries and management utilities for a currency-exchange terminal and software applications for production lines at European factories, where operational data are retrieved from conveyors, analysed and processed in real time."
IBA has received critical acclaim for its tailored solutions. Its Automated Fare Collection (AFC) system, installed in the Minsk public transport network, was recently awarded a European IT & Software Excellence award by IT Europa. It's now taking the next step by developing smart card and NFC solutions that will be functioning not only in the transport sector, but also in other areas and branches, such as loyalty programmes, libraries and museums.
If it is to continue building on this success then the ability to adapt to the changing portfolio of IT products available remains crucial.
"I see a lot of things that can be automated, modified or improved and IBA keeps exploring new trends and opportunities," says Levteev. "We at IBA Group keep doing research, expanding technology expertise and diversifying our offerings. We intend to proceed with payment systems that serve banking, transport and other sectors. We are planning to release innovative solutions to satisfy the new demands of new clients in the changing world."