Welcome!

@CloudExpo Authors: Elizabeth White, Liz McMillan, Yeshim Deniz, Nate Vickery, Karthick Viswanathan

Related Topics: @CloudExpo

@CloudExpo: Article

Pointwest Delivers IT Services to Philippines and the World

Company Offers Everything from COBOL to Glassfish and Beyond

I found myself sitting at a table with Renato "Rene" Quizon (pictured below), Executive Director of Business Development at Pointwest, during a recent business summit in Manila that featured a guest appearance by Philippine President Benigno "Noynoy" Aquino III. The President was there to congratulate the growing IT services community and announce an educational fund to help develop the business further.

After we exchanged some local political gossip (which will remain strictly confidential), Rene invited me over to the company's office the following week.

Strolling in Makati
Soon enough, I was traipsing down Makati's Paseo de Roxas one early afternoon to visit Pointwest's headquarters.

I either stroll, traipse, or sometimes amble throughout Southeast Asia, having learned long ago not to move too fast in the tropical heat. But this area, part of the country's primary central business district, crackles with energy during the day, as a small army of a youngish workforce strives to lift this developing nation.

Pointwest has more than 700 employees - most of them located in Makati, Metro Manila, with two satellite offices in the US - and provides sophisticated IT services to clients in the airline, financial services, healthcare, utilities and retail industries. It has partnerships with IBM and Microsoft - as well as several international chambers of commerce - and delivers specific technology practices for Microsoft, Java, mainframe/ legacy, and enterprise IT testing.

Pointwest has grown to its present level from 60 employees in 2003. Today, it uses what it calls a matrix-driven model to deliver a variety of services domain specializations. The firm also gets a quarter of its business from Pharmacy Health Information Management services as part of the Philippines' world-leading $11 billion in BPO revenue.

Locally Owned and Managed
Pointwest is "a 100% Filipino global IT service company providing world-class IT and BPO services," as Rene proudly states, and recently won an ICT Philippines award as best mid-sized local BPO company.

Together with Ma. Cristina "Beng" Coronel, president, Josefina "Jowee" Reyes, Executive Director for Administration and Finance, and US-based VPs Lucila "Lucy" Flores and Corazon "Cora" Agbayani, he leads fellow IT professionals who share the same passion and belief in creating a unique Filipino brand name for the IT outsourcing industry.

During our conversation, he explained to me that although the company hires entry-level programmers, QA engineers, and testers, to be sure, it focuses on developing them into systems engineers, designers, developers, and architects. "We are a place where you can build a career," he said.

The company's roster of skills includes all the languages, frameworks, and environments one can name. Rene gave me a detailed, two-page list of them to prove the point. Looking for JBoss? Ibatis? Glassfish? Netweaver? Maximo? You'll find them, along with at least 100 other common and less-common skills.

"We also hire young COBOL programmers," Rene said with a smile - yes, as everyone in the IT business knows, this is still a valued skill in many instances.

New employees attend a rigorous, weeks-long bootcamp to get up to speed on the company's processes, client requirements, and whatever skill sets they may need.

High-Level View
At the higher level, Pointwest throws out terms such as "above- and below-the-wing services," a reference to its airline business. "When you check into a flight on one of the top three US airlines," Rene said, "our work is embedded in everything from your frequent traveler number to security to delivering your bags."

The company also provides services to one of the Philippines' "Big Three" banks, specifically in the form of a marvelous kiosk-based customer-service system at all the branches that I've found provides a lot of convenience and saves a lot of time in a country where manual, paper-based procedures are still common.

Fairly recently, the IT firm delivered an online event booking system in the form of an ASP service in the cloud, enabling small to mid-size non-profits, their Australian client's target market, an easier and cheaper alternative.

The Future
Metro Manila has the second-highest city GDP in Southeast Asia region, trailing only Singapore. Makati's Starbucks-to-person ratio is the equal of San Francisco or New York. Big, global brands such as Accenture, KPMG, and Convergys have located tens of thousands of employees here.

Yet the future of the country depends in large measure on homegrown companies such as Pointwest that leverage the energy of this populous nation of 90 million people (and counting). Rene doesn't like to speculate publicly on specific company targets, but said "we've come a long way, and we intend to continue to grow and develop along with the IT services economy in the Philippines."

More Stories By Roger Strukhoff

Roger Strukhoff (@IoT2040) is Executive Director of the Tau Institute for Global ICT Research, with offices in Illinois and Manila. He is Conference Chair of @CloudExpo & @ThingsExpo, and Editor of SYS-CON Media's CloudComputing BigData & IoT Journals. He holds a BA from Knox College & conducted MBA studies at CSU-East Bay.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


@CloudExpo Stories
In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Raju Shreewastava, founder of Big Data Trunk, provided a fun and simple way to introduce Machine Leaning to anyone and everyone. He solved a machine learning problem and demonstrated an easy way to be able to do machine learning without even coding. Raju Shreewastava is the founder of Big Data Trunk (www.BigDataTrunk.com), a Big Data Training and consulting firm with offices in the United States. He previously led the data warehouse/business intelligence and B...
In his keynote at 18th Cloud Expo, Andrew Keys, Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise, provided an overview of the evolution of the Internet and the Database and the future of their combination – the Blockchain. Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life settle...
Smart cities have the potential to change our lives at so many levels for citizens: less pollution, reduced parking obstacles, better health, education and more energy savings. Real-time data streaming and the Internet of Things (IoT) possess the power to turn this vision into a reality. However, most organizations today are building their data infrastructure to focus solely on addressing immediate business needs vs. a platform capable of quickly adapting emerging technologies to address future ...
In his general session at 21st Cloud Expo, Greg Dumas, Calligo’s Vice President and G.M. of US operations, discussed the new Global Data Protection Regulation and how Calligo can help business stay compliant in digitally globalized world. Greg Dumas is Calligo's Vice President and G.M. of US operations. Calligo is an established service provider that provides an innovative platform for trusted cloud solutions. Calligo’s customers are typically most concerned about GDPR compliance, application p...
You know you need the cloud, but you’re hesitant to simply dump everything at Amazon since you know that not all workloads are suitable for cloud. You know that you want the kind of ease of use and scalability that you get with public cloud, but your applications are architected in a way that makes the public cloud a non-starter. You’re looking at private cloud solutions based on hyperconverged infrastructure, but you’re concerned with the limits inherent in those technologies.
Is advanced scheduling in Kubernetes achievable?Yes, however, how do you properly accommodate every real-life scenario that a Kubernetes user might encounter? How do you leverage advanced scheduling techniques to shape and describe each scenario in easy-to-use rules and configurations? In his session at @DevOpsSummit at 21st Cloud Expo, Oleg Chunikhin, CTO at Kublr, answered these questions and demonstrated techniques for implementing advanced scheduling. For example, using spot instances and co...
Blockchain. A day doesn’t seem to go by without seeing articles and discussions about the technology. According to PwC executive Seamus Cushley, approximately $1.4B has been invested in blockchain just last year. In Gartner’s recent hype cycle for emerging technologies, blockchain is approaching the peak. It is considered by Gartner as one of the ‘Key platform-enabling technologies to track.’ While there is a lot of ‘hype vs reality’ discussions going on, there is no arguing that blockchain is b...
DevOps is under attack because developers don’t want to mess with infrastructure. They will happily own their code into production, but want to use platforms instead of raw automation. That’s changing the landscape that we understand as DevOps with both architecture concepts (CloudNative) and process redefinition (SRE). Rob Hirschfeld’s recent work in Kubernetes operations has led to the conclusion that containers and related platforms have changed the way we should be thinking about DevOps and...
The need for greater agility and scalability necessitated the digital transformation in the form of following equation: monolithic to microservices to serverless architecture (FaaS). To keep up with the cut-throat competition, the organisations need to update their technology stack to make software development their differentiating factor. Thus microservices architecture emerged as a potential method to provide development teams with greater flexibility and other advantages, such as the abili...
Product connectivity goes hand and hand these days with increased use of personal data. New IoT devices are becoming more personalized than ever before. In his session at 22nd Cloud Expo | DXWorld Expo, Nicolas Fierro, CEO of MIMIR Blockchain Solutions, will discuss how in order to protect your data and privacy, IoT applications need to embrace Blockchain technology for a new level of product security never before seen - or needed.
Leading companies, from the Global Fortune 500 to the smallest companies, are adopting hybrid cloud as the path to business advantage. Hybrid cloud depends on cloud services and on-premises infrastructure working in unison. Successful implementations require new levels of data mobility, enabled by an automated and seamless flow across on-premises and cloud resources. In his general session at 21st Cloud Expo, Greg Tevis, an IBM Storage Software Technical Strategist and Customer Solution Architec...
Coca-Cola’s Google powered digital signage system lays the groundwork for a more valuable connection between Coke and its customers. Digital signs pair software with high-resolution displays so that a message can be changed instantly based on what the operator wants to communicate or sell. In their Day 3 Keynote at 21st Cloud Expo, Greg Chambers, Global Group Director, Digital Innovation, Coca-Cola, and Vidya Nagarajan, a Senior Product Manager at Google, discussed how from store operations and ...
"As we've gone out into the public cloud we've seen that over time we may have lost a few things - we've lost control, we've given up cost to a certain extent, and then security, flexibility," explained Steve Conner, VP of Sales at Cloudistics,in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
Blockchain is a shared, secure record of exchange that establishes trust, accountability and transparency across business networks. Supported by the Linux Foundation's open source, open-standards based Hyperledger Project, Blockchain has the potential to improve regulatory compliance, reduce cost as well as advance trade. Are you curious about how Blockchain is built for business? In her session at 21st Cloud Expo, René Bostic, Technical VP of the IBM Cloud Unit in North America, discussed the b...
The use of containers by developers -- and now increasingly IT operators -- has grown from infatuation to deep and abiding love. But as with any long-term affair, the honeymoon soon leads to needing to live well together ... and maybe even getting some relationship help along the way. And so it goes with container orchestration and automation solutions, which are rapidly emerging as the means to maintain the bliss between rapid container adoption and broad container use among multiple cloud host...
In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Michael Burley, a Senior Business Development Executive in IT Services at NetApp, described how NetApp designed a three-year program of work to migrate 25PB of a major telco's enterprise data to a new STaaS platform, and then secured a long-term contract to manage and operate the platform. This significant program blended the best of NetApp’s solutions and services capabilities to enable this telco’s successful adoption of private cloud storage and launching ...
Imagine if you will, a retail floor so densely packed with sensors that they can pick up the movements of insects scurrying across a store aisle. Or a component of a piece of factory equipment so well-instrumented that its digital twin provides resolution down to the micrometer.
"Since we launched LinuxONE we learned a lot from our customers. More than anything what they responded to were some very unique security capabilities that we have," explained Mark Figley, Director of LinuxONE Offerings at IBM, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
A strange thing is happening along the way to the Internet of Things, namely far too many devices to work with and manage. It has become clear that we'll need much higher efficiency user experiences that can allow us to more easily and scalably work with the thousands of devices that will soon be in each of our lives. Enter the conversational interface revolution, combining bots we can literally talk with, gesture to, and even direct with our thoughts, with embedded artificial intelligence, whic...
Sanjeev Sharma Joins June 5-7, 2018 @DevOpsSummit at @Cloud Expo New York Faculty. Sanjeev Sharma is an internationally known DevOps and Cloud Transformation thought leader, technology executive, and author. Sanjeev's industry experience includes tenures as CTO, Technical Sales leader, and Cloud Architect leader. As an IBM Distinguished Engineer, Sanjeev is recognized at the highest levels of IBM's core of technical leaders.