On 30 August, the General Manager visited Germany for a day-long program where he gave a keynote speech, met with industry, and exchanged knowledge with German IT specialists.The day started with the General Manager’s keynote at the annual Koblenz Information Technology Symposium, organised by the Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association (AFCEA). Topics of his speech were the status of the NCI Agency reform processes and his views on the Symposium's theme: “Mobile Computing and Cyber Defence”. About 500 people were in attendance, including the German C4ISR community and Dr Dietmar Theis, who is German Command and Control (C2) principal and Agency Supervisory Board member. The speech by GM was met with highest interest and was followed by a lively discussion.At noon, GM met with the German IT Industry Association – BITKOM (Federal Association for Information Technology, Telecommunications and New Media) representing roughly 1700 companies. General Manager Gijsbers and the chairman of BITKOM interest group defence, Mr Markus Lehman, encouraged German IT industry for more intense participation in NCI Agency’s opportunities for business.
Continuing the trip in the afternoon, Mr Koen Gijsbers visited BWI Informationstechnik GmbH – a joint ventured between the German Ministry of Defence (49%) and Industry (Siemens and IBM – 51%) commissioned to operate and modernize German armed forces static IT-Infrastructure. The company presented its business approach and lessons learned, and provided a tour of its Centralised User Help Desk and Network Control Centre. The 10 year joint venture contract worth 7.1 billion Euro includes 140.000 PCs/Notebooks, 4 Data Centres, 1200 locations of German Armed Forces HQs, Agencies and German MoD. These services are provided by the company BWI with a total of 2800 employees. Follow up discussions were agreed upon as BWI IT shares wide parallels with the NCI Agency Service Delivery business cases. During this visit GM was accompanied by Admiral Di Cecco, Dietmar Theis, Joe Corrigan, and Wolfgang Taubert.
In the evening, following a personal invitation, GM attended the farewell ceremony for LGen Kurt Herrmann (former Director of NCSA) at the German MoD in Bonn. The ceremony, in presence of an audience of distinguished guests, was occasion for the most honourable military act by the German armed forces, the Großer Zapfenstreich, in tribute to Kurt Herrmann’s service.