Interactive Intelligence has acquired the customer support agreements of its New Zealand reseller, Amtel, the company has announced.
According to the vendor, the acquisition will increase the company's presence in the region and give local customers direct access to expanded support services. "We have purchased all of the contracts and Amtel will cease to exist. Staff will come across to us and we will also add more staff," says Interactive Intelligence ANZ managing director Brendan Maree.
Amtel's 24 customers will now directly be served by Interactive Intelligence sales, marketing, support and services organisation in New Zealand.
In about three weeks, the company will shift offices to a new location in Newmarket, Auckland, but Maree adds that an increase in staff numbers will probably mean the company will move offices again before the end of the year. "With the growth that we are anticipating, we certainly expect to have to move from that office by the end of the year," he says.
“This acquisition benefits former Amtel customers by giving them direct access to our local, regional and global support and services staff, which number about 450 worldwide,” says Interactive Intelligence founder and CEO, Donald E Brown. “At the same time, it will help us launch our cloud-based communications-as-a-service offering in New Zealand.”
Maree says that while it is still too early to announce further details of the new cloud-based offering, the vendor is actively engaged in discussions with telcos in New Zealand and a more formal announcement should be expected "possibly in the next three to six months". "There is nothing finalised yet," he adds.
The company plans to expand its Auckland staff to a total of between eight and 12 employees by the end of the year. It also plans to relocate the office to a larger facility within the next 12 months.
"There is lots of business going on in New Zealand," says Maree, justifying the acquisition.
Maree says that there will be no further reseller acquisitions in New Zealand as "there is no one else to buy". He also justifies the acquisition with a need to increase direct investment in the country. "We decided to invest our own money here. We were not getting traction from tier 1 resellers," he says, adding that "smaller resellers like Amtel don't deal with larger organisations and we have lost some big opportunities in New Zealand".
In spite of this move, Interactive Intelligence says it will continue its “sell-through-partner” strategy throughout the Australia and New Zealand markets, according to CEO. “We remain committed to our reseller channel and will continue to support existing partners in the region, which is in keeping with our combination of a direct and partner distribution model that we’ve operated successfully throughout the world since our founding in 1994,” he says. "Certainly our model is not shut off to resellers," adds Maree.