Aamir Qureshi completed
his MBA from Punjab University and BCS from Pak American College of
Computer Sciences, Lahore. Aamir is the Managing Director of Micro
Masters. The company was established in 1997. The company has been
growing at a rapid speed and today Micro Masters is a company with
full operations of sales, marketing, distribution and customer
services. Micro Masters was the first company to sell Pentium-4 system
in Pakistan. Keeping pace with the latest technology, the company
launched Pakistan's first locally assembled branded system RAFFLES in
year 2000. Raffles Branded Systems is a subsidiary of Micro Masters.
By SHABBIR H. KAZMI
April 29 - May 05, 2002
What is the importance of local assembly of computer hardware?
Raffles is Pakistan's first locally assembled branded system, with
three years warranty. The need of the time is to have locally
assembled branded computer systems which enjoy quality, power,
performance, reliability, back-up support, maximum guarantee and last
but not the least affordability. These are all the features Raffles is
compromised of. It is very important for us to have a local brand like
Raffles, which would be upgradeable, provide customer support
throughout Pakistan and at the same time is very reasonable in price.
We are working on protecting the customer's investment on PC's. Our
locally assembled branded systems provide maximum guarantee for 3
years. On top of this you can have the system made according to your
own specification and requirements. We are urging the Ministry of
Information and Technology to recognize Raffles as the leading local
brand and register it with the Ministry as branded system so that
maximum benefits can be passed on to educational institutions.
You are an IPP, how does this give an edge over others?
Aamir: Only the
best of the best are certified as Intel Premier Providers (IPP). This
is only possible by demonstrating a commitment to leadership,
technical expertise and customer service in all areas of information
technology. As an IPP one enjoy an enhanced relationship with Intel,
which offers increased visibility in a competitive market. In fact, it
informs potential customers that the vendor is a preferred source of
Intel-based technology solutions. We are the first company in Punjab
to be certified as an IPP, this gives us a very significant edge over
many other computer vendors and solution providers. We are being
recommended by the Intel as the optimum solution providers for any
When you talk about superior quality, it also means higher price. What
are your comments?
Aamir: We at
Micro Masters are never willing to compromise on quality. I also
believe that quality products do not have to be expensive. This is one
area in which we have worked very hard to establish it as a fact, and
Raffles branded system is a true example of this. Raffles system are
based on quality, power, performance and most important of all
affordability. We test our system and our products very aggressively
in our labs to make sure that each system is quality oriented. This
allows us to offer very competitive prices to the customer, which
allows him to get a better value for their money.
increasingly large number of second-hand computers are being imported
into Pakistan, do they support latest version of different software?
hand systems are not helping the information technology motorway. Yes
with second hand systems you are able to provide a PC at a very cheap
price, but you don't have any warranty on it, the monitors are fitted
with voltage converter kits. Basically your total investment is at
risk as any thing can collapse at any time, not only all the new
software are also not supported by these machines. Many have old
motherboard technology, which cannot be upgraded and are not capable
of running many new software programs. We are working very closely
with leading hardware manufacturers to launch a very affordable PC,
which should replace the second hand system problem. I would urge all
customers not to go for a second hand PC, as it will end you up in a
dark closed lane, with no options to play with.
Local educational institutions face limited availability of computers,
what is your company doing to support these institutions?
present government and specially the ministry of science and
technology have been very supportive for the growth and establishment
of IT centers in local educational institutes. The need of the time is
to have strong IT based education institutes, which can produce
quality students, who can work as the backbone of this industry.
Pakistan has to surge forward and create a niche in international
markets and be self-sufficient. Our aim is to set a standard in
locally assembled PC's and create an excellent reputation in these
institutions. We are working very closely with many educational
institutes, running IT exhibitions, Product display shows, offering
special discount packages to the institutes and the students. We are
educating them in making the best decisions for the purchase of
Computers and other items. I am very hopeful that very soon more and
more institutes will be equipped with the latest technology and
Raffles will be there to help them achieve this target. In my opinion
the use of computers in Pakistan's core industries and educational
institutes should be promoted to attain competitiveness in the global
market first and then we should work to become a leading exporter of