Sunday, September 26, 2010

FingerTec in ISAF - Wooing An Istanbul Distributor

Tamy received a lot of Konichiwas

The show in Istanbul just ended today leaving us with a feeling of hope. Turkiye is one of the important markets of the security industry; made strong by its geographical location, vastness and economic power. ISAF attracted vendors from various sectors from CCTV, fire security, turnstiles, gates, etc and biometrics certainly is not a novel technology in this show. People are already familiar with this solution or at least know that fingerprint products are available.

The main challenge now is finding a right partner which could carry FingerTec's brand essence without compromising on price factor significantly.

And I received a lot of "Are you a muslim?" question. :)

The first and second day of the show were rather slow on Hall 10, where we were located along with the fire security companies, as compared to Hall 9, which was a little bit happening with some songs on loudspeakers. The next two days were much better for us. Everybody was looking to view the price list and not so much on the product specifications. The fact that China made products have been flooding the Istanbul market made our price seems a bit on the higher side. This fact needed some explanation and our audiences understood the fact after being presented with the resources we offer them as our resellers. Interestingly, unlike many other places we've been to, many are interested to become resellers to a Turkish distributor. They are willing to pay higher price rather than dealing with importation of products from abroad. We find this situation quite unique as compared to many countries that always want to be distributors despite how low the quantity of their orders. :)

The show started to draw on crowds on the weekend

This time we didn't hire any translator because the one that came to work didn't know English. She understands Turkish and understands English (as what she signaled to me) but she couldn't speak any English except "so-so" and then she flashed a big smile to us. We had to send her back without any replacement. And surprisingly, people who are interested to deal with us came back with their translator to make things easy for both parties. Marketing your products in English in Turkey is a no-brainer. It is our mission to find a partner that can communicate in English but we will definitely do our marketing and resources in Turkish to capture this market. Translations of our software and hardware in Turkish are done so far and we will move on to other data sheets and materials. We already made a few acquaintances in Turkey to assist us on good translations.

ISAF is definitely a good platform for the security industry and we are proud to be apart of this growing market. All we could do now is to be hopeful that we could secure a good partner that could bring FingerTec to a greater height in this great country. Any party interested, please email me at

by Norana Johar, COO, FingerTec HQ

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Istanbul – A Reminder of What Would We Left Behind

I am in awe by the majestic yet melancholy views of Istanbul city. A place so rich in history and culture once glorified by its gigantic and powerful empire and then succumbed to the fall of the westernized Ottoman Empire, now is a desired tourist destination the world over. The beauty of Istanbul at both sides of the Bosphorus River is as subtle as the drawing of Melling, understated but impactful. I left out a sigh for not being able to capture the desired snapshots of Istanbul, the feel of the city is not justified by any photographs.

The landmarks of this great city like the Hagia Sophia, the Sultanahmet Blue Mosque, the Hippodrome, would leave all visitors with at least a tinge of admiration regardless of one’s religion, to the level of dedication and passion this city had on beauty, intricate details and on arts itself. Modern design is just an excuse word to escape being labeled as lazy, in my opinion.

A step into the Saint Sophia made my heart skipped a beat. Though it looks tired at some angles, every inch of the building spills professed love of the devotees of Christianity and Islam to this place of worship. There are huge calligraphy arts at a diameter of 7-meter wide each hanging high inside the building bearing the name of the Creator, Allah, Muhammad the messenger and his respectable caliphs. At the same time, in every corner of the first floor right wing, there are several mosaic arts made of real gold depicting the hand over of the city Istanbul to Jesus Christ and Virgin Mary by Constantine, “my Istanbul (Constantinople) is your Istanbul”

Every door is carved with intricate details, the mimbar, the prayer area of the Sultan – everything exudes handcraftsmanship at its highest level of perfection. A visit to Sultanahmet Blue Mosque confirms the same attitude the Istanbullus possesed in creating a monumental landmark. The grand mosque was built in a mere 5 years by 10,000 workers has every detail of precision and delicate designs to make it stand out even after the tests of time.

The art and culture are deeply rooted in the heart and soul of the Istanbullus. I stood in the middle of the night admiring the beautiful mosaic piece on the wall of its Metro station. I find joy strolling the city of Istanbul with the rests of millions visitors admiring the bits and pieces of the city’s uniqueness.

I couldn’t let go of the fact that we have come so far in ignoring the needs in paying attention to small details, and to always strive for excellence in everything that we do, even how trivial. Today’s generation are so void, engulfed and engaged on Facebook and the Internet without realizing that we have lost so much of our own identity and pride over time.

What would be our legacy to the next generation and would they be in awe when they think about us and the stories we left behind?