Reseller News

Brightmail buy unlikely to affect NZ channel

LOCAL Brightmail distributor Capital Business Technologies is likely to retain its status for at least six months following the conclusion of the bid launched last week by security software giant Symantec to acquire the anti-spam vendor.

However, no official decision on the matter is expected to be made until the sale, worth about $US370 million, is finalised in July.

Capital Business Technologies chief executive Darin McKay says it is still too early to speculate over its future as the Brightmail representative in New Zealand, although he is confident of a positive outcome.

“We are not overly concerned — we have a good reputation with the brand,” says McKay.

But according to Richard Batchelar of Symantec New Zealand, it is likely that Capital Business Technologies will retain its status for at least the first six months after the acquisition, judging from previous Symantec buyouts.

“Following the acquisition of PowerQuest last year, Soft Solutions is still the distributor here,” says Batchelar.

He adds that the arrangement would be reviewed after the initial six months, when a decision will be made whether distribution rights will remain with the original distributor or be transferred to Symantec’s two local distributors, Tech Pacific and Express Data.

“But we are not sure what will happen as no official decision has been made as yet,” states Batchelar.

Meanwhile, Garry Sexton, Asia Pacific vice president for Brightmail, says he is unable to cast any light on the matter as US regulations prevent him from commenting on possible post-acquisitions outcomes.

Meanwhile, both Sexton and McKay vow that it is “business as usual” until the sale is finalised.

“We will continue to follow our strategy to gain as many New Zealand customers as possible,” says Sexton, while McKay says a number of large New Zealand organisations, including a number of government agencies, are currently considering adopting the Brightmail software, having completed trials of the product.

Symantec, which already owns an 11% equity stake in Brightmail, says the company’s anti-spam technology will complement its range of gateway security products. It plans to merge Brightmail employees with its existing gateway security team.

This would signify a return to a former employer for many of Brightmail’s directors and employees, including Garry Sexton, who was Symantec’s Asia Pacific vice-president until March last year.