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PANAMA - Telecoms & IT

Raphael Evans

General Manager, Smartbytes


Raphael Evans is the General Manager of Smartbytes. He has also been a successful franchisee for one the largest franchise chains in the world and an investor in several start-up ventures. He graduated in 2010 from Florida International University with a master’s in business administration.

"Our focus remains the same: to make sure that the customer is always at the center of our universe."
Smartbytes is Panama’s leading IT solutions company and is on a mission to help corporations achieve their full technological potential through innovative business solutions.
In a context where digitalization and digital services stand out, how was 2022 for Smartbytes?

This is the best time in history for IT companies to provide digital solutions to their customers. But it is also one of our greatest challenges because the digital landscape is constantly changing at a fast pace. At Smartbytes, we have adjusted our strategy to deliver more competitive digital services while reshaping our traditional portfolio. In that sense, we stand out by offering our clients digital solutions that can increase operational effectiveness, provide long-term stability and security.

How do you see companies adjusting to the digital transformation?

If you want your company to exist for the next 100 years, you must embrace digital transformation. But what exactly does that mean? I think digital transformation is less about technology, and more about people. People must be skill enough to use cutting edge technology. I see a lot of company buying technology that nobody knows how to use. They spend money on technology but not on people. Leaders who want to transform their businesses should think first about investing in the people as they are the ones who can make technology useful, not the other way around.

In which sectors do you find more opportunities?

Every single sector is an abundant fountain of opportunities for the simple fact that all industries need technology. Having said that, some sectors are more appealing than others depending on seasonality and economic circumstances. We are currently working with sectors such as banking, aviation, construction, healthcare, retail, and of course, public sector, which we have been closely related with for the last 15 years. In addition, we recently became the first and only company in Central America to obtain an operational technology certification from Fortinet. This has allowed us to provide OT services to mining, hydropower, maritime and many other industrial process-based companies.

What is your main focus for the short run?

Our focus remains the same: to make sure that the customer is always at the center of our universe. Customers are to companies what oxygen is to human beings and that is why we are so passionate about it. Every single move we make at Smartbytes is calculated based on how it will impact our customers. We want our customers to say “wow, I was not expecting that. Incredible. Let’s do it again.” We want our customers to become evangelists of our brand. It would be a mistake to go focus on something else. Providing the best IT solutions means nothing if your customer is not happy with the way you treat them.



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