"There is no development without technology"

  • Posted by Marina Vatav
  • December 22, 2013 11:52 AM EST

A Data Center opens in Haiti in January 2014


DMS International, an American company, will open the first Data Center in Haiti in January 2014. This important investment brings disaster recovery opportunity for storing all the important private and public information. Through the cloud technology, businesses, the government, and individuals will be able to rent servers and access the latest software without paying the full license price upfront.

It started after the earthquake

Daniel Silva and his partners started DMS International 20 years ago in the US and have been providing IT services and trainings mostly to government employees in the military, Homeland Security and other agencies. Haiti is the only country outside the US where the business is expanding.

"I am originally from Haiti and after the earthquake I saw a connection there for me to start going back home and do something – leverage the knowledge, the resources that I've acquired over time to support my country, not just on a humanitarian basis but to open a business there," said Daniel.

Unlike the Dominican Republic, Jamaica, Barbados, and most other Caribbean countries, Haiti has no infrastructure for technology development, no local data center that would offer information storage and software licensing services.

"If you look at the current computing park in Haiti, for example, it's a bunch of little computers, desktops, laptops that will start having challenges in the near future with upgrades on the hardware and software sides, along with the cost of doing that. I want to convert all these existing users into the data center users. It's a dream, but it's not so far-fetched because as they get tired of buying new hardware or new software because technology changes every two years, they will realize and say: 'I need to stop doing that and get into something that's self-upgrading, and I don't need to be involved into buying all that'. To me the current market is very large," shares Daniel.

How it works?

The Data Center, which is composed of a number of servers, will offer disaster recovery solutions. Government, businesses, and private individuals can use the servers as a back-up for all their important information and electronic documents.

Through the data center businesses and people will not only get extra computing capability, but they will also have access to the newest software by paying small monthly payments instead of paying the software licensing fees upfront. Businesses may boost their productivity by starting to use inventory management software, human resources software, and others.

Renting a server will cost around $400-500 a month, whereas buying a server would cost thousands of dollars. It also includes the services of network administrators and technicians that will install and upgrade all the requested software. According to Daniel, the new infrastructure can be available within one day.

Other services include document management - a service that will help the government and businesses scan their paper documents and manage them electronically; mobile computing - building mobile applications; and business process outsourcing - meant to offer outsourcing services such as data entry to foreign companies, thereby creating jobs in Haiti.

"The intent of the data center is to create new entrepreneurs as well. As a data center we don't intend to be selling one or two licenses per person, but you could find that there is an entrepreneur that finds a niche of selling to a certain group of people and all they would do is rent space and license his products," said Daniel.

"I want people to feel that they can create their businesses on this platform."

There is no development without technology

"There is no development without technology and you cannot do technology in the way that old technology has been working. You have to shift into major computing capabilities, because nowadays it's not just a couple of word documents and things like that. There are systems that are monitoring information on a 24-hour basis, that accumulate data; therefore, you need a lot of computing and storage power to accumulate all that information, and software to crunch that data and make sense out of it," noted Daniel Silva.

The Data Center is being build in Spain and it's expected to be fully operational in January. It will be located inside the ESIH technology university and aims to contribute to the education sector through free videos, free licensing, thus educating people about this software.