Leadership Tracker: Red Hat kicks off Rooster Year with new Malaysia leader


red hat HQ tower 2 (red hat media resource)

Photo (Red Hat Media Resource) - Red Hat HQ, Tower 2


 During a recent Chinese New Year briefing in Kuala Lumpur, open source solutions giant Red Hat officially announced that industry veteran Chew Kai Peng has been appointed as the country manager of Malaysia and Brunei.

Introducing Chew to Malaysian media, Damien Wong, who is Singapore-based vice president and general manager, ASEAN, Red Hat, said that Chew was formerly the Services sales director for Red Hat in ASEAN.

Wong said the Chinese 'Year of the Fiery Rooster' in Malaysia has kicked off with Chew, who will lead the direction of the team in Malaysia, and helping to form ties with enterprise customers and partners in Malaysia, as well champion open source solutions in the country.

Before moving on to informally discuss the company's current thoughts and strategies, he said the appointment has been made at a time when Malaysian organisations are "rapidly embracing modern technologies to meet the expectations of an increasingly digital society" - this trend especially noticeable since this time last year.

"Red Hat recognises the potential of the Asia Pacific region and Malaysia," commented Wong. "With Chew's strong expertise within the ICT industry, he will focus on the adoption of improved and advanced technologies whilst helping to unlock and accelerate new innovation possibilities in Malaysia."

Chew Kai Peng - Country Manager for Red Hat Malaysia

Chew (pic above) has more than 20 years of ICT sector experience, which include key roles in three multinational companies - Compaq Computer Corporation, Digital Equipment Corporation, and Hewlett-Packard. Some of his expertise covers IT consulting, software and solution selling, customer relationship management (CRM), enterprise application services, infrastructure and industry-based solutions, and more.

Growth in Malaysia

"I appreciate Red Hat's determination to provide the best products and solutions to our customers in the industry," said Chew. "I am excited to work alongside the Malaysian Red Hat team and our local partners to help customers modernise their IT infrastructures whilst enabling an innovative approach which can enable to business success."

Moving on, Wong's remarks included a brief outline of the company's strong performance in Malaysia and Brunei.  Since beginning operations in Malaysia in 2006, Red Hat has seen a positive shift in the adoption of open source.

Many organisations are now undergoing IT and business transformations to better compete in today's digital and disruptive economy, he said. "We hold to our open source philosophy, which is about being part of an open ecosystem of IT leaders, advocates, developers, and partners who work together to build the future of IT."

Wong touched on examples such as the establishment of OpenStack and adoption of Docker where Red Hat's stance open source solutions proved to offer many benefits for modern, digital solutions. Some of these benefits are "flexibility, faster innovation through ecosystem collaboration, and scalability."
While he could not officially give any indication of Red Hat's expected local growth in 2017, he did say the company was "cautiously optimistic," a popular sentiment in the local industry.

Wong said some of this caution is attributed to global uncertainties such as the US presidency and possible impact in Asia. "We do live in interesting times and have an interesting world ahead of us this year."

"However, technology breaks through barriers and helps innovation and the propagation of ideas, driven especially by an open philosophy," he said. "With the digital revolution, even staid sectors like banking have made a 180 degree shift to rethinking their view of cloud computing and digitisation. Banks are now judged by their apps and not their premises."

Wong said, "Disrupters have proved that you no longer need to own assets, you can use technology to drive successful business models in most sectors."

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