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IT shifting to BPO services from legacy SI: Hitachi Systems CEO, Kitano

Yogesh Gupta | Dec. 14, 2016
Enterprises’ demands are fast changing from IT products delivery to service offerings, says Masahiro Kitano, President and CEO, Hitachi Systems

Hitachi Systems, an IT services company, is largely focusing on cloud, global solutions and BPO services to create new benchmarks and meet the new IT demands of organizations globally. In an exclusive interaction with IDG India, Masahiro Kitano, president and CEO, Hitachi Systems, spoke at length on his India visit and the company’s edge in today's hyper-competitive technology landscape.

Edited Excerpts.

It’s been nearly three quarters (from April 2016) with you at the helm of Hitachi Systems. What initiatives have you implemented for the company's growth?

Historically, Hitachi Systems is a services company specializing in system operation, monitoring and maintenance of IT infrastructure. We execute system integration in Japan market. However in recent years, earlier CEO Naoya Takahashi changed the strategy from the legacy type of services by expanding the BPO business in Japan and globally. Many customers want to adapt this business model because of the lack of good IT skilled person especially in small and mid-size company. I, too, am changing the business mind set in Hitachi Systems from legacy SI to BPO--upside down.

Businesswise, by focusing on (recurring) services business, we achieved the target for H1 of 2016. And technology-wise, we launched innovative and advanced service such as drone operations management services. With this acquired security technology and capability of our SOC, we started the new security service. Also, we have inquires and POC request in new fields like AI and robotics, as well. Hence, I am very excited about these new projects.

How different is the new role at Hitachi Systems (from your earlier one at Hitachi for over three decades) in terms of portfolio focus and company vision?

The business environment is changing from product to development to services creation. I changed my role (as an engineer of mainframe, servers, routers, storage, PC at Hitachi) from development to changing everyone’s mind set from legacy oriented business to services oriented business. This is my career’s biggest change.

Customer demands are changing from a mere delivery of IT products to service offering. Also the keyword “IT” has changed has changed to “ICT” with communication becoming a predominant trend.

Recently, the “digitalization” has been rapidly accelerated and we are promoting the projects on this. Specifically we think the business opportunity lies in the digitalization of customer’s on-site business and in the fulfilment of the gap caused between real world and cyber world. And this is where we are focusing to provide services.

Without solely jumping straight into new technologies like IoT, AI, big data analytics, we first focus on solving the problems underlying the actual customers' business by using IT as a tool.


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