Philippines key as Kyndryl makes leadership move

Philippines key as Kyndryl makes leadership move

Former CIO of Philippine Airlines joins expanding tech provider.

Wilson Go (Kyndryl)

Wilson Go (Kyndryl)

Credit: Kyndryl

Kyndryl has unveiled plans to double down on the Philippines following the appointment of Wilson Go as managing director, as the newly formed technology provider accelerates digital transformation plans.

Effective 1 March, Manila-based Go joins the business from Philippine Airlines having previously held the role of CIO and senior vice president, tasked with navigating the national carrier’s digital transformation journey.

During his tenure, Go rolled out projects such as big data analytics, automation and optimisation in operations, information security and data privacy posture improvement, achieving 40 per cent in expense savings in the process.

“Wilson is an experienced CIO who has significant expertise in digital transformation and is well regarded among the local CIO community,” said Susan Follis, managing director of ASEAN and Growth Unit across Asia Pacific and MEA at Kyndryl. “I welcome him to the team and am looking forward to working closely with him to expand our customer and partner relationships in Philippines and ASEAN.”

With more than 30 years of market experience, Wilson was previously senior vice president of Information Technology Shared Services at SM Investments Corporation, leading the country’s largest conglomerate through a period of data centre consolidation and modernisation.

As a long-time IBM veteran, Wilson also held various leadership roles ranging from finance and administration, sales, channels and services, in addition to mergers and acquisitions, intellectual property licensing and business development.

New horizons in ASEAN

The appointment of Go in the Philippines comes as Kyndryl -- the business entity formerly known as IBM’s Managed Infrastructure Services unit, which was officially spun off from the mothership in early November after more than a year of planning -- continues to use its newfound freedom to expand its horizons, both in terms of the vendors it partners with and which customers it works with.

“We are not in IBM’s ecosystem, which we were before, and our ability to partner is greater,” said Follis, when speaking to Channel Asia in November. “You’ll see a big difference in our partnerships.  

“In this region, for example, there’s Alibaba Cloud, so we’ll have certifications here, and with Google Cloud’s presence in Indonesia, we’ll have certifications there. We can target our investments locally to expand within ASEAN to address individual clients’ requirements."

While Kyndyl is working to build out its partner ecosystem on the vendor side, it’s also expanding the areas of the market it wants to focus on. IBM has long courted the very largest enterprises and government organisations, making that end of the market its core focus. 

Now that Kyndryl is out of IBM’s shadow, it has the freedom to pursue customers in other parts of the market -- and in a region like Southeast Asia, there are plenty of opportunities across the market spectrum.

“We’re investing our ability to grow in this much-expanding market,” Follis told Channel Asia. “We’ve got new clients to reach out to. We need to scale and address clients we wouldn’t have before. We used to only have very large clients. But now, for ASEAN, we can scale down and really address that market.” 

As a result, according to Follis, it is expected that Kyndryl will gain a greater share in many different markets across the region, as well as in markets that weren’t addressable before because it couldn’t partner with other providers as freely as it can now due to the aforementioned competition issues.

With this in mind, Follis hopes to see Kyndryl join forces with partners that have multiple offerings, with the company looking to gain certifications for all the big cloud providers’ offerings.  

This approach, Follis reckons, will mean the company can scale to meet the requirements of customers in the region, many of which might have a favourite cloud provider, or perhaps several preferred cloud providers, they want to continue working with. 

"If they [the cloud providers] are coming to ASEAN, we can partner with them,” she said.

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