Mar 18 - 24, 2002
DUBAI QUALITY AWARD
Mr. Reza S. Habib, Joint President of Habib Bank AG
Zurich receiving award from H.H. General Shaikh Mohd Bin Rashid Al
Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, Minister of Defence, UAE, and Chairman
of the Department of Economic Development
CUSTOMER CARE SOLUTIONS
As technology evolves with each passing day, as
computers slide into the very existence of mankind — be it personal
or business, home or office, as time, management and productivity
depend on 'new and effective means' - computers, technology and
software are much more significant than we may tend to believe.
Customers demand services that are tangible and cost-effective,
translating, on many an occasion, into software and hardware that
increase the overall company performance.
Recently, Inbox Business Technologies along with 2B
Technologies hosted a seminar keenly focusing on emerging technologies
with a direct link to effective Customer Relationship Management (CRM).
CRM, today is one of the integral aspects of a running, successful
business. Clients and customers are always on the lookout for
companies who understand their business function and have the relevant
knowledge and expertise to assist them in achieving higher
"End-to-end Customer Care Solutions" was
one such seminar where the two participating companies presented their
solutions from their respective areas of expertise. Inbox Business
Technologies, a renowned local branded computer assembler and 2B
Technologies, a software development company focusing on customer care
solutions, both teamed up to highlight this focal area in today's
business world. The combination of specialized services and expertise
offered attendees with an opportunity to gain insight into an evolving
requirement that direly needs to be addressed. On behalf of Inbox, Mir
Nasir, Director Technical & Networking Solutions, spoke about
server technology and about high-end Inbox machines that can be an
effective part of an organizations structure to the degree of cutting
unnecessary costs and enhancing productivity. Owais Zaidi from 2B
Technologies made a presentation on software that can be integrated
into businesses to ensure better performance.
The "Build Your Business on a Real
Server" presentation made by Mir Nasir, Inbox, highlighted
business-related environmental changes such as stronger competition,
the daily and common usage of the Internet and email, global
connectivity so to speak and offered information regarding why a
business must work with servers and a networked environment. A common
misconception is that an ordinary PC will suffice as a server whereas
the reality is far from that. The basic reason being that the
ingredients in a server are not found in normal desktop PCs. A server
has more powerful processors, real server boards and multiple network
Moving on in the presentation, Mir Nasir spoke
about the clear-cut benefits of a real server in a business
environment "Working with the right technology means you make a
one-time expense and cut any future costs. Companies can't afford to
have their servers crashing when data and communication is of primary
importance," said Nasir. Reduction in overall network costs is an
obvious result as working with the right machines means there won't be
any unnecessary problems such as a desktop PC crashing under the load
of acting as a server. And this very amalgamation of hardware and
software will make the company more efficient, productive and
According to Nasir, Inbox e-Bridge servers feature
three main characteristics: Performance, availability and scalability.
On the performance front, the servers have multiprocessing features
and are compatible with various Server Application softwares.
Availability includes the reliability, the manageability and
serviceability of the product. Inbox guarantees original hardware and
components, which are trustworthy and dependable. Service, in terms of
expertise and knowledge is of primary importance at Inbox and the
company currently has a number of Intel certified engineers who are
qualified to address all technical and software problems. Scalability
provides users with the option of either buying bigger servers with
more memory and faster processors or purchasing several similar
servers for doubling bandwidth and reducing overheads.
The complete range of Inbox e-Bridge servers was
displayed in a showcase area for all present at the seminar. e-Bridge
is the first local brand of servers with international quality and
backing and Inbox offers a complete range of servers with server
solutions. Inbox e-Bridge servers are the only servers in Pakistan to
be validated for Pentium III and Pentium III Xeon and carry a 3-year
comprehensive warranty. Additionally, Inbox has trained sales
specialists who are capable of identifying and fulfilling customized
Inbox Business Technologies was established a
little over a year ago with the aim of capturing the local computing
scene with a locally branded range of computers. By sheer virtue of
technical expertise and exceptional customer service, Inbox has
managed to establish itself as a formidable entity in the market.
MAINTAINS THE RATING OF FIRST HABIB MODARABA (FHM)
The Pakistan Credit Rating Agency (PACRA) has
maintained First Habib Modaraba's financial strength rating at 'A3' (A
Three). The rating denotes an outstanding financial condition with
consistent record of above average performance. FHM is one of only two
Modarabas that has been placed in "A" category rating. This
is the highest rating band in PACRA's rating scale for Modarabas.
While assigning the rating, PACRA has recognized
the consistent performance trends and continued outstanding asset
quality, which is an outcome of prudent credit policies and effective
post disbursement monitoring. Going forward, the asset quality and
sound financial health of the Modaraba is expected to be sustained
considering the highly competent management team of FHM. The rating
also reflects continued strong support arising out of the affiliation
with the Habib Group.
Effective this year, the nomenclature for the
rating has been changed from Individual Rating to Modaraba Financial
Strength Rating. The change is primarily to fully reflect the
methodology of Modaraba ratings, which focus on the overall financial
strength of the Modaraba. The rating definitions remain unchanged.
UFONE JOIN HANDS FOR MCB MOBILE BANKING
MCB and Ufone have joined hands to provide Mobile
Banking services through MCB Mobile Banking. The launch ceremony was
held at MCB Principal Office, Karachi on 8th March 2002. The ceremony
was attended by Mr. Arshad Khan (Chief Executive) Ufone, Mr. Salman A.
Wassay (GM) Marketing & Sales-Ufone, Mr. Mohammad Aftab Manzoor,
President MCB, Mr. Ali Munir (SEVP-Financial Control Group), Mr. Amjad
Farooq (Head of IT) MCB, Mr. Aarij Ali (Head of Consumer Banking) MCB
and Mr. Javed Adhi (SVP) MCB.
MCB Mobile Banking was introduced for the first
time in Pakistan in September 2001. It is now being expanded to MCB
ATM cardholders that are Ufone customers also. The service is
available 24-hours a day, 7 days a week, inclusive of all holidays.
This service will allow Ufone subscribers to access
their account balances and mini-statements through Short Messaging
Services (SMS) Facility.
Interested customers can have more information by
visiting any of MCB's on-line branches, contacting Help Line
(021-111-000-777) or registering on the web at www.mcb.com.pk.
MCB is committed to technological excellence. MCB
Mobile Banking is one of the series of initiatives aimed at providing
value-added products and services to its current and potential
customers as well as customers of its partners.
INDONESIA CONSUL TO KCCI
Mr. Temu Alam, Consul of the Republic of Indonesia,
visited the Chamber of Commerce & Industry, Karachi and had a
meeting with the President, Mr. A.Q. Khalil.
Mr. Temu Alam expressed the optimism that bilateral
trade can be expanded manifold through frequent exchange of trade
delegations and identification of potential tradables.
The recalled the successful holding of exhibition
of Indonesian products in Karachi in the year 2000 and hoped that
Pakistan will reciprocate.
Mr. Temu Alam expressed the view that businessmen
of the two countries should be encouraged to participate in the
privatization process underway in both the countries jointly and
The Indonesian Consul stated that there was ample
potential of export of rice to Indonesia's over one billion global
rice import market, mentioning that this year over-flooding has
damaged the standing rice crops. He also informed that there was
impending shortage of sugar, which would provide Pakistan a good
opportunity to export its surplus sugar.
Mr. A.Q. Khalil, President of the Chamber stated
that, unfortunately, overall bilateral trade of about $300 million
lags far behind the existing potential. The trade base is very thin
and goods exchanged are very limited. There is ample goodwill for
expansion of trade and joint venture collaboration.
UL ISLAM ASSUMES CHARGE FOR NCR BANGLADESH AND IRAN
Syed Veqar ul Islam, the Counlry General Manager
for NCR Pakistan has been assigned the additional responsibilities for
managing the Data Warehouse and CRM business of NCR for Bangladesh and
Veqar has been heading the NCR Pakistan operation
for the last 3 years. He is instrumental in the recent growth of NCR
Pakistan and has also established NCR as a strong niche player in the
area of Self Service Banking, Data warehousing, Call Centers and
Networking in Pakistan.
In its recent report Merrill Lynch has also
acknowledged NCR Pakistan's leadership position in the area of Call
Center and Data warehousing. NCR Pakistan has also recently
established a Center of Expertise in Pakistan in the area of Data
warehousing for the Middle East Africa Region.
His appointment follows the great success of Veqar
and his team in the data warehousing market in Pakistan. NCR Pakistan
becomes a regional player as operations of two more countries come
under the leadership of Veqar due to his immense experience, knowledge
and leadership qualities.
Veqar joined NCR Corporation in September 1985 as a
Sales trainee. Within a short span, he moved up in the organization
from Senior Account Manager to Branch Manager, then to Business Unit
Leader and was promoted to the position of Country General Manager.
APPOINTS CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER
TeleCard Limited has recently appointed Mr. Rick
Battilana, as the Chief Operating Officer responsible for operations
of both Wire Line and Wireless business units of the company. Rick is
a fellow of Institution of Engineers of Australia and has degrees in
Electronics and Computing Sciences from University of Southern
Australia and University of Adelaide. He has had extensive experience
in planning, installing, managing and operating both wired and
wireless networks, satellites systems, cellular networks in Australia,
Middle East, and South East Asia.
REAFFIRMS AAA (TRIPLE A) RATING FOR PAK-ARAB REFINERY LIMITED
For the fifth year running, The Pakistan Credit
Rating Agency (PACRA) has maintained the entity ratings of Pak-Arab
Refinery Limited (PARCO) at "AAA" (Triple A) and
"A1+" (Single A one plus) for the long term and short-term
respectively. The entity ratings are applicable to the senior
unsecured creditors of the company. The rating of the comfortably
secured TFC of Rs.2.5 billion has been maintained at "AAA"
(Triple A). These ratings denote the lowest expectation of credit risk
and an exceptionally strong capacity for timely payment of financial
commitments. PARCO continues to be the only company in Pakistan —
out of over a hundred entities rated by PACRA — that has been
assigned an entity rating of AAA.
PARCO a joint venture between the Government of
Pakistan (60%) and the Emirate of Abu Dhabi (40%) — is involved in
refinery, transporting and marketing of various petroleum products
including the introduction of unleaded MOGAS in the country.
PARCO's rating reflect stable and efficient
business operations, effective management policies, high margins on
pipeline operations and the GoP guaranteed 25% minimum return on the
paid-up capital attributable to the successful first year operation of
the Mid-Country Refinery. As a result, the company's business and
financial risk continues to be low. However, the liquidity levels are
expected to remain dependent on the pace of agreed disbursements of
the Shortfall in the Guaranteed Return (SGR) by the GoP. Meanwhile the
management's capability to successfully accomplish its business and
financial objectives remains fully demonstrated through marketing
Joint Ventures with TOTAL-PARCO and SHV.
GOVERNING TRADE AND INDUSTRIAL SECTORS OF PAKISTAN UNDERGOING RADICAL
CHANGES: ABBAS RAZA
Preston Institute of Management, Science and
Technology (PIMSAT-Karachi) Islamabad Campus organized a lecture on
"WTO & GATT-Policies and Issues" for its postgraduate
students of Business Administration. The lecture was organized by the
Institute under its 'Distinguished Lecture Program.'
Mr. S. M. Abbas Raza, former Director of the
National Tariff Commission, Ministry of Commerce, Government of
Pakistan and currently Director Trade & Industrial Technical
Services (TRAITS) Islamabad, while addressing the postgraduate
students, faculty and management of Preston Institute of Management,
Science & Technology, said that conditions governing the trade and
industrial sectors of Pakistan were undergoing radical changes as a
consequence of and in furtherance to the application of the GATT &
WTO rules and regulations. He spoke at length on the World Trade
Organization (WTO) and General Agreement on Trade & Tariff (GATT)
on the occasion. The rule-based system developed in the Uruguay Round,
he said, is expected to promote smooth and orderly development of
Mr. Abbas further maintained that whereas on the
one hand the detailed rules give industrial and business enterprises
certain rights, on the other they placed certain obligations on them.
The ability of the industries and business enterprises to benefit
fully from this rule-based system, however, greatly depends on the
knowledge and understanding of these detailed rules. In view of the
foregoing, he asserted that there is a dire need for the university
students and particularly business executives to develop familiarity
and in depth knowledge of the WTO/GATT Agreements and Rules &
Regulations. He lauded the endeavors of Preston Institute to broaden
the knowledge of its students by exposing them to specialized lectures
by professionals who are regarded and respected as specialists in
their respective fields. He also appreciated the knowledge that
executive students of the Institute possessed, particularly regarding
the economic issues confronting the country today. Dr. Abbas thanked
the management of Preston for providing him the opportunity to share
with its students his views on a subject so vital to the interest of a
developing country like Pakistan.
Brigadier (R) Mazhar Abbas Razwi, Senior Program
Director Preston Islamabad Campus expressed the gratitude of the
management, faculty and students of the Institute to Mr. Abbas Raza,
for sparing some of his precious time to deliver a lecture on such an
important topic. As a token of appreciation, Brigadier Razwi presented
the Institute's plaque to Mr. Abbas.
EXCITING FUN FAIR AND MUSICAL PROGRAM IN FUN LAND
Arena Multimedia following its tradition to keep
both education and entertainment together, organized Arena Family Fun
Far followed by musical program, a grand event to celebrate 4
successful years of Arena in Pakistan. Many national and multinational
companies participated in the event by putting up their stalls and
banners on the venue. Dewan Group was the main sponsor for the event,
beside this Pepsi, McDonald's, Lipton Igloo, FM 100 and many other big
companies also participated. More than 3000 people attended this
program that includes over 1500 Arena students, their families, Centro
owners. Also people from different newspapers and magazines visited