Gulf Colleges Sign Up For Innovative Technology

Qwizdom (UK), the Dundonald-based developer of innovative interactive learning technology for the education and corporate sectors, has won its first orders from the Arabian Gulf following an Invest Northern Ireland business mission to the region.

The company is supplying its high tech systems to further education colleges in Dubai and Oman as well as Qatar Telecom in Qatar. The orders follow the appointment of a distributor in Dubai soon after it took part in the Invest NI business mission to Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Dubai from 27 February - 6 March.

It was Qwizdom’s first Invest NI mission to the Middle East.  The company’s interactive learning systems use handheld remotes and RF technology to actively engage participants in the learning/training process.  

Nineteen companies and representatives from Queen’s University Belfast are currently visiting the Gulf on the latest Invest NI trade mission to the region.

Paul Brown, Qwizdom’s Managing Director, commenting on the orders, says: “Taking part in the mission was very worthwhile in that it helped us to find and begin discussions with a distributor for the region.

“The distributor has since visited us in the UK for training in our technology and has produced an initial series of orders. In addition, he has arranged for our systems to be trialled in universities in Dubai. We are confident that these will eventually lead to orders. Interest in our Qwizdom Actionpoint product, which integrates with the Powerpoint presentation system, is particularly encouraging.

“We hope the Gulf region will become an important market for us over the next few years. We’ll also be taking part in a major educational exhibition in Dubai in December,” he adds.

Alan Hingston, Invest NI’s Trade Director, says: “The Gulf region is an excellent market for technology companies because of the high level of demand for high tech products. Dubai in particular is developing rapidly into the Middle East’s most important technology hub. Many of the world’s technology leaders are already based there.

“Our base in Dubai Internet City is ideally located for Northern Ireland companies wishing to market their products and services. Our companies can also access expert advice from an experienced team of business people based in our technology and development centre. The advisors help companies such as Qwizdom with guidance about business procedures in the region and help them to identity suitable representatives there,” he adds.

Formed in 2003 by Mr Brown, Qwizdom (UK) is the UK representative of Qwizdom, a US company, based at Puyallup in Washington State, which developed the interactive technology.

The system enables teachers and training course tutors to monitor student progress and level of understanding. Furthermore, it eliminates paper based marking through instant reporting and grading.

The Northern Ireland operation is responsible for software development, marketing, technical support and online training to customers in Europe, the Middle East and Asia Pacific.

The company currently employs around 20 people – 15 in Northern Ireland and the rest in its sales operation in Great Britain.