Monday 24 January 2022

HandsOn Systems expanding further internationally

HandsOn Systems has opened remote development offices in several countries to complement the work being done in Malta. Recently appointed HandsOn Systems Chief Technology Officer Chris Deguara says this will not only enable the company to expand its product lines further but also to penetrate these new markets.

Eastern Europe is one area in which HandsOn Systems has opened remote development offices with software engineers focusing on individual aspects of its product line. CTO Chris Deguara will head the main development and operational office in Malta, with a team of leading experts assisting him.

The international development teams will take up HandsOn Systems’ product lines – fleet management, RFID and the other smaller products –taking ownership and bringing the respective products to the next level.

“HandsOn Systems is the go-to company in Malta when it comes to IoT (Internet of Things) and the local market is now becoming saturated,” Mr Deguara said. “We intend to remain active in the Maltese market, but the next step is to become the go-to IoT company internationally.

“We already have a substantial number of clients abroad in countries like Italy, West Africa and the Middle East. Opening up in Eastern Europe and other countries, you are hitting two birds with one stone. You have an autonomous team carrying out product development and you are also targeting the country’s market from the sales and marketing fronts.”

Mr Deguara pointed out that, in order to achieve a substantial level of sales, there must be people who are familiar with the country’s norms, culture and the way of doing business. “We will be tapping the country’s technological resource pool and simultaneously opening up sales opportunities. This way, the company will be winning and keep on moving forward on these very important fronts.”

No newcomer to HandsOn Systems, Mr Deguara was one of the company’s first employees even before it moved to its first office in Qormi a decade ago. He started as a software engineer and put together the company’s first website.

He went on to take a B.Sc. in Computer Science from the University of London, graduating in 2014. The course included elements of sound design and 3D rendering. After two years with HandsOn Systems he went on to explore other industries: disaster recovery, fintech and trading, apart from doing some work on the side related to crypto, blockchain and accounting.

Still, he found the work at HandsOn the most satisfying and, when CEO Geoffrey Farrugia, presented this new opportunity, he felt he was up to the challenge. “HandsOn Systems were always at the forefront of technology, and I always used to publicly say that it was the most satisfying work I was involved in. They are always providing solutions to very complex problems while helping out people. That is one of the best combinations one could ever ask for.

“Geoff approached me, because we kept in touch, and told me he was looking for someone to help him take HandsOn to the next level. He had some specific plans, and the idea captured my interest immediately. I love a challenge.”

Mr Farrugia commented: “Having now grown to a team of around 50 employees globally, I was looking for someone who is familiar with the company culture, and yet is young and dynamic to be able to lead our technology teams. I am convinced Chris is up to the challenge I presented him, and we can truly work together to produce the synergies we are seeking and continue to grow HandsOn Systems in Malta and internationally.”

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