Support Centre extends MUA's services reach

Support Centre extends MUA's services reach

Specialist distributor MUA scored a coup last week when Microsoft appointed the organisation as its fifth Authorised Support Centre.

The announcement is a timely boost for MUA following the distributor's failure to cement a spot in Compaq's restructured distribution line-up.

MUA joins fellow Support Centre partners Compaq, HP, Wang and NCR, but will only offer support for Microsoft's high-end server products including NT Server, Exchange Server and Terminal Server.

According to MUA's managing director Paul McQuarrie, Microsoft showed an interest in MUA as a potential Support Centre because of its ability to provide an on-site national presence.

"This was surprising because we discovered that none of the other Support Centre vendors and services organisations had the appropriate resources to service that niche market in all regional areas," he said.

Another plus for MUA was the decision to ramp up its efforts to become a Windows NT specialist.

"We were turning over at least $2 million in services before the Microsoft announcement, the equivalent of 10 per cent of our revenue.

"We expect the Support Centre business will double that revenue in the next 12 months," McQuarrie predicted.

"Microsoft will be sending the major-ity of its high-end server support calls directly to our Centre and we'll have a great window of opportunity."

McQuarrie claimed that while services revenues will eventually equal those of its distribution arm, the latter will continue to play an integral role in MUA's future.

"Our distribution focus continues to attract customers who need services," he said.

"The high-end markets that we serve require plenty of handholding and customisation because of the complexity of the products.

"It's not that simple to set up a value-add distribution organisation without first having some experience in dealing with service-intensive products and customers," he added.

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