Thought leadership

The following articles were written by Strategy& partners and other senior professionals on key topics in the information technology sector.

Blockchain is a decentralized register that maintains a permanent and tamper-proof record of transactions data. It offers several major benefits and an important opportunity for telecom operators. Telecom operators in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), with their developed digital infrastructure and strong customer relationships, are positioned to gain internally and externally from blockchain, by creating additional services and revenue streams through greater efficiencies in handling data or through new business models.
Putting GCC transportation and logistics in the driver’s seat
GCC freight transportation and logistics companies should use new digital tools and applications to transform their businesses and keep up with their global competitors. Companies need to decide their business objectives and then apply a five layered digital transformation framework, in which technology is considered an enabling factor, to determine how to apply these technologies to achieve these goals.
Empowering the GCC digital workforce
Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries are engaged in ambitious national transformation plans such as Saudi Vision 2030 and Abu Dhabi Economic Vision 2030. The full scale of these plans can be realized only by increasing efficiency across sectors, mainly through digitization.
Embracing sharing
The amount of digital content created, exchanged, and consumed is growing by the day across the world. The objective of this report is to provide a comprehensive view of the effect of the Internet on content providers and distributers, emerging artists, and consumers in five very different countries.
Content democratization
The amount of digital content created, exchanged, and consumed is growing by the day across the world. The objective of this report is to provide a comprehensive view of the effect of the Internet on content providers and distributers, emerging artists, and consumers in five very different countries.
Tech-enabled transport
Innovative technologies offer GCC countries a means of managing significant fiscal, safety, environmental, and accessibility challenges in their transportation systems.

More reports and studies

Too many companies in the GCC regard the process of going digital as the adoption of a specific technology, rather than a transformation journey. GCC organizations should instead approach this challenge holistically by creating the building blocks for digital transformation. These steps can bring GCC industries up to speed in digitalization.
Achieving universal Internet access requires changes in the three interdependent markets that make the Internet work. The Connectivity Market needs: to shift the spectrum away from 2G, improve offline distribution of content, and add national and international Internet infrastructure. The Content Market needs to: provide relevant educational content, put social services online, and provide economic opportunity content. The Retail Market needs: high-touch sales models, brand- or subscriber-subsidized access, and simpler value propositions. Additionally, technological innovations are needed to reach the remotest and the very poorest of the world’s population. This is the full version of the report.
Turkey can accelerate the reach of national broadband with six policy measures: evolve and boost commercialization channels; reduce the cost of ownership for end users; scale up relevant local applications and content; promote wholesale and infrastructure sharing services that make commercial sense; leverage the Universal Service Fund to support broadband deployment in pre-defined low-density areas; drive municipality-led demand aggregation and incentives.
In the U.S. and Europe, financial technology (FinTech) “ecosystems” have stimulated technological innovation, made financial markets and systems more efficient, and improved customer experience. The four necessary design elements for these ecosystems exist in the GCC: the business environment/access to markets, government/regulatory support, access to capital, and financial expertise.
The continuing success of digitization initiatives in the Middle East brings with it an added and growing exposure to the risk of cyber-attacks, whether from other states or criminals. Countries need a strategic response that mobilizes stakeholders and builds preventive and reactive cyber-security capabilities.
Telecom companies can integrate their business support systems applications (previously managed by the IT department) with operations support systems applications (previously handled by the network department), thereby boosting the operational efficiency and better synergizing the elements of the technology backbone.
While digitization — the mass adoption of digital technology through connected services and devices — has proven to accelerate economic growth and facilitate job creation, its impact is not uniform. Therefore, policymakers need to develop digitization plans across sectors that take into consideration the varying impact by level of economic development and sector.