Samir Naji has over 25 years’ experience in the IT industry, having founded Horizon Technology Group PLC in 1988. Over the following 20 years Samir led the development of Horizon as it became a leading IT services business operating across Europe with subsidiary companies in Ireland, UK, Finland, Italy, Denmark and Sweden.
Samir was the Chief Executive and main shareholder in Horizon when the company was floated on the Dublin and London stock exchanges in 1999. The company achieved record share price growth on its first day of trading on the Irish and London Stock Exchange.
Horizon grew to become one of the leading systems integration and distribution companies in the UK and Ireland. Horizon’s channel business marketed and supported enterprise server, storage, networking, security and communications products from leading vendors including Sun Microsystems, EMC, F5 Networks, Juniper, IBM, Nortel and Oracle. In addition to its channel business, Horizon’s Solutions business unit partnered with major software vendors including BMC, Microstrategy and SAP to provide a full range of customisation and implementation services to end user customers throughout the UK and Ireland. In 2003 Horizon became Cisco’s largest training partner in Europe training over 5,000 Cisco Certified Networking Engineers in 9 European training centers. This business was acquired by Azlan plc and subsequently Tech Data, a Fortune 500 company in 2003.
Samir developed Horizon’s strategy, communicated it to shareholders and successfully led its execution. Horizon was acquired in 2008 by Avnet Technology Solutions, a leading global IT Solutions distributor and another US Fortune 500 company. Horizon had revenues of over €280m and 400 employees at this time.
Samir graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree from University College Cork.
Since the acquisition of Horizon he has been an investor and business advisor to various technology start-up companies, both in Ireland and abroad.
Samir was awarded the ICT Industry Person of the Year in 2006.