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Connect tackles convergence

Connect tackles convergence

VOICE and data systems integrator Connect NZ has acquired Hamilton-based Ocom Networks and Auckland solutions company Ibyte.

Ocom is a systems integrator, as is Ibyte, with a specific telephony focus. Both acquisitions are key to Connect’s vision of becoming the leading independently owned voice, image and data integrator.

Brent Page, Connect NZ managing director, says his objective is to hit critical mass and geographical coverage.

“Convergence has been a buzzword for so long and there is a real challenge in bringing traditional IT sales and telecommunications sales together,” he says.

Page says there have been no redundancies and instead is looking at recruitment opportunities.

“If anything the Waikato is under-resourced. Through these acquisitions our voice and engineering skills have been considerably strengthened but we have started a nationwide recruitment initiative to build a strong sales and data team.”

Connect NZ was established in 1979 but Page says his company has managed to maintain a low public profile.

“We’ve been around a bloody long time but now have a national brand. While all the attention is nice it’s still the customers who are the ultimate arbitrators of whether we’re any good or not.”

The company is currently in active discussions with other parties and Page says further acquisitions are likely.

Tony Jayne, general manager Agile New Zealand, is fully supportive of the acquisitions.

“It creates a specialist channel for converged IP telephony with national coverage and, from my perspective, it’s an interesting development,” he says.

For Jayne the national coverage is vital as many customers implementing IP have multiple sites.

“It’s very difficult for individual offices to provide that level of support. To have a strong channel with strong coverage is important to Agile — every vendor needs an effective channel.”

He says IP telephony is a key growth area and believes acquisitions are a smart way to increase a company’s scale and skills.

Jayne says IP telephony is no longer an emerging technology and is now in a strong growth phase.

“The acquisitions are good news for customers looking for a partner able to provide end-to-end voice and data solutions.”


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