As a leading co-location, cloud and managed services BMIT Technologies develops intelligent and secure infrastructure solutions, helping businesses reach their full potential by harnessing innovative technologies. Christian Sammut leads BMIT’s team of experts, who guide businesses towards bespoke solutions that power their future as part of a dynamic and demanding corporate landscape – and an ever-evolving technological world.
For Christian Sammut, a lifelong passion to create and build has shaped who he is – and what he does – today. While his love of design and architecture inspired his original ambition to pursue a career as an architect, changes in direction towards engineering and then into business administration set him on a different course.
With a degree in engineering from the University of Malta and a Master’s in Business Administration from Brunel University under his belt, Christian began his career with the Dowty Group on an assignment overseas within the aerospace industry. His first foray into IT infrastructure services and data centre management followed in 1992, with a position at the then-MITTS (Malta Information Technology and Training Services Ltd), the Government’s in-house ICT agency.
Christian then joined Maltacom Group to set up Innovate Ltd in 2001, developing a state-of-the-art data centre facility. He later moved to GO plc where he held various positions, including Chief of Strategy and Business Development. And, when GO plc took on BMIT as its subsidiary, he became its CEO.
“I have been CEO at BMIT for over a decade now, since 2011,” he says. “In that time, I’ve seen it grow from a small organisation serving a specific industry, into something far larger that serves many different organisations from a variety of sectors. By bringing tech to both large and small enterprises, our own company has grown in the process. And, as part of that journey, I have also enjoyed accelerating the pace of technology adoption at BMIT – sometimes with tech that is still new to the market – and making it available to customers.”
The CEO’s ever-present focus on the future has also catalysed several milestone moments for the organisation over the years. “In 2012, we were proud to launch the first public cloud platform in Malta,” he recalls. “Another hugely satisfying landmark was the listing of BMIT Technologies on the Malta Stock Exchange in 2019, bringing to fruition years of hard work following a clear strategy to grow our core business, make key strategic investments and continue attracting expert technical resources.”
Hard work, meanwhile, is very much at the core of Christian’s own work ethos and his leadership approach with the BMIT team. “When I think of the role of CEO, there are all sorts of different types; some are more commercially focused, while others have a more entrepreneurial flair,” he says. “I don’t fit into any category. I consider my role to be that of leader, mentor, motivator and friend to my team and colleagues. I try to be honest, loyal, dedicated, hardworking and, more than anything else, passionate about what I do – and I expect a similar work ethic from everyone on the team.”
With these values in place, employee empowerment is high on his agenda. “Something that satisfies me as CEO is that I am in a position to help shape people’s futures, giving them opportunities to learn, grow, advance their careers and enjoy their job,” he shares. “Yet, despite the opportunities available, there are still the few who aren’t interested in taking them. It is a frustrating but necessary part of the role.”
In fact, grasping opportunities – and helping clients do the same – has been a key ingredient in BMIT’s ongoing success story. The product of two already-successful organisations, BMIT Ltd and Kinetix IT Solutions Ltd, BMIT Technologies has always had a clear objective: to make harnessing the power of technology simpler and more accessible for businesses. Via its team of highly specialised professionals – who collectively offer a diverse range of expertise from technology to business strategy and innovation – BMIT develops intelligent and secure infrastructure solutions designed to optimise operations, simplify processes, improve efficiency and enhance customer engagement.
“BMIT began as a data centre, primarily as a hosting provider for the gaming industry when it took off in the early 2000s,” explains Christian. “As a Malta-based data centre, we could add real value, especially to businesses with regulatory requirements to hold data locally.” In 2009, GO acquired 60 per cent of the company and then full ownership in 2011, before BMIT’s listing on the Malta Stock Exchange. “Over the years, the company has embarked on a journey of change, introducing cloud services and embracing other emerging technologies.
No other local IT services provider has such a strong legacy. Today, we proudly deliver our services to customers across industries, including online gaming, financial services, ICT, manufacturing, media, transportation, retail and hospitality. We serve as a platform and partner as businesses seek to improve their organisation and embark on their own transformation.”
In keeping with BMIT’s openness to the needs of the changing world, Christian foresees that its future will include further expansion into the digital services space. Indeed, the company continues to assist customers with their own digital transformation, following the technological curveball of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Even before the pandemic hit, we were technologically ready to help offices and their employees with a secure, remote facility for customers to host systems and data. Throughout 2022, the drive to go digital post-COVID-19 has continued, as people have realised that IT is an integral part of strategy, not just to better serve their customers but also to operate efficiently,” he shares. “COVID-19 also increased demand for some solutions we provide – but, when it comes to managing human capital, tech can only help so far. Our role as a trusted advisor has become even more important, with many customers turning to us to help them along this journey.”
While the limited availability of sector-specific human resources also impacts BMIT, fresh challenges, including escalating costs and economic uncertainty, create major issues with supply chains, bouncing delivery times up from days to months. “We have focused on rebuilding relationships with clients in the B2B environment, with the help of the drive, optimism, energy and dedication of all employees. Nevertheless, I anticipate a few more turbulent years ahead, so we’re continuously looking at how to adapt to this new reality.”
It is a “new reality” across the IT sector that is in constant flux. “Technology develops and evolves at an unprecedented rate. And, with change comes disruption – sometimes when you least expect it, which can become taxing for organisations. Apart from the digital transformation, AI is becoming more mainstream, built into processes both at work and at home so that governments will soon have little choice but to transform their economies into digitally enabled ones, signalling huge scope for IT solutions providers. At BMIT, we’ve already embraced the shift towards AI by partnering with a local AI provider to develop related products and services.”
While enlarging BMIT’s footprint both locally and internationally with new services and acquisitions, Christian has a firm plan in place for the company in 2023 and beyond. “We have been working on the strategy for our next evolution, which will focus on the continuous drive towards cloud services, remote platforms, AI, new tech and the ever-critical need for cybersecurity. We are always seeking to add value for our customers, wherever they are based, while investing in infrastructure and strengthening our legacy as a leader in the sector,” reaffirms the CEO.
This article is part of the serialisation of 50 interviews featured in MaltaCEOs 2023 – the sister brand to MaltaCEOs.mt and an annual high-end publication bringing together some of the country’s most influential business leaders
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