Deyatech director Li Da on selling IT solutions
Source: Global Times
[February 05 2010]
By Mark Godfrey
Business software is selling fast to Chinese companies trying to use IT to improve efficiency and management. Li Da, the Canadian-Chinese director of Deyatech predicts revenue growth of 200 percent this year for the firm's TrueDM document management software. From its original headquarters in Beijing Deyatech has tripled its headcount since its 2004 launch. The firm plans to open a third regional office this year.
How fast has Deyatech grown?
Aside from staff revenue it has grown 300 percent per year over the last three years.
We are looking at revenue growth of at least 200 percent in 2010. We are only in the sixth year.
What's driving the growth?
The market has definitely shifted dramatically. When we started we were educating people about the product. IT people in companies didn't really understand what we were. But since 2007 people have been looking for document management software. We can't keep up with the numbers of people coming to us. The knowledge base, the number of documents etcetera, of Chinese companies has drastically increased. The ability of Chinese IT people has expanded, and they're see-ing how the US and EU counterparts are using software. They (Chinese companies) are also seeking efficiencies by eliminating errors for example. Compliance to ISO (International Standards Organization) and Sarbanes Oxley (US ac-counting standard) standards is also a factor now for Chinese companies. These changes happened gradually in the US but they're happening all at once here in China.
How does your client base split between local and foreign firms and how do the two differ?
The bulk of our customers are Chinese state-owned and private firms. Chinese firms are very aggres-sive. They see IT as very integrated with management, and they're thinking about management policy all the time. They are very aggressive and willing to try new things. Multinationals are often very conservative and have entrenched IT policies and providers.
Has the global recession caused a change in the IT needs and spending of China-based companies? How have you adapted?
Manufacturing and trade firms were affected more and have cut investments in IT. But state owned firms and other sectors like telecoms haven't stopped spending. We have also found a growth market among construction companies who need to handle project documents for infrastructure projects funded by China's ($580 million) stimulus plan.
How competitive are you next to the global IT brands offering similar products?
What they'd sell for $500,000 to a big company we can do for a similar figure in yuan.
Are you developing any new software products here in China?
We are improving the functionality of the current TrueDM product, so it's more mature and higher requirements for clients in different sectors. The end of the life cycle of the TrueDM product is not near yet. Our R&D staff is continuously working on new features to the product.
What about your local competitors?
They are usually small firms. Their products are not as mature and their clients not as robust as ours.