MYOB brings channel into merger picture

MYOB brings channel into merger picture

MYOB EXPECTS further growth from its differing channels working together, after claiming its IT resellers have doubled their sales this year.

The business software vendor plans initiatives involving its IT resellers and other types of partners, and is boosting its sales and channel staff.

The move follows MYOB’s takeover of accountancy software company Solution 6, which will also strengthen ties between accountants and small businesses.

Approval for the $250 million deal between Melbourne-based MYOB and rival Solution 6, a former dot-com darling, has been given by regulatory authorities on both sides of the Tasman.

MYOB says the merger gives it a broader product range; it should double its annual global sales from $90 million to $180 million and generate $10 million to $12 million of savings a year; and headcount also doubles from 500 to 1000. The Solution 6 brand disappears but product names, such as Viztopia, remain, though under the MYOB label.

Christchurch-based business products division manager Paul Jennings says the merger gives MYOB access to better product development and many new accountancy customers.

Solution 6 was particularly strong in Australia and the UK, he says, and the vendor’s customer base in New Zealand is also boosted by 25%.

MYOB hopes it can increasingly help accountants help their customers by offering added-value services.

Jennings says accountants already form an important reseller channel for the company and this will continue. IT resellers form another, but non-competing channel, along with major retailers Harvey Norman and Dick Smith, and the company’s “approved partners”, namely business consultancies.

Accountants resell MYOB’s own accountancy product, and the Solution 6 range, direct to their small business customers. The wider MYOB business software products are sold indirectly, through the channel, using Tech Pacific as sole distributor, Jennings says.

MYOB believes the arrangement works well as it gives the company close links to the country’s 2000 accountants, while the channel is more efficient for the much larger market of 300,000 New Zealand businesses.

Jennings says many IT resellers have told him that they want to sell MYOB products and services but they have insufficient knowledge. Now, they can talk to MYOB’s approved consultancies, which will help resellers make sales while the consultant can expect ongoing training and onsite support business.

MYOB is announcing programmes linking the different channel streams. One recent programme links sales through Harvey Norman with consultancy.

Another new programme offers IT resellers a monthly prize draw through Tech Pacific.

“What IT resellers will see is the more effective development of the channel in collaboration with Tech Pacific,” Jennings says.

The vendor took part in the Tech Pacific Showcase 2004 event.

Jennings says MYOB is enjoying 60% annual growth, with the vendor expecting to increase its $1 million profit made on $11.9 million of revenue in New Zealand in calendar year 2003.

Jennings says there is still much “untapped potential” for MYOB software, claiming many businesses are using spreadsheets when more efficient alternatives are available.

The company has boosted its advertising and marketing this year, through TV ads and through campaigns to partners and the wider channel.

MYOB has also recruited a national sales manager for its accountancy division and is about to employ an education and training manager in the business division to help educate end users and channel partners.

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