Increasing opportunities in technology convergence have prompted IT and telecommunications distributor, the Cellnet Group, to start a new sales strategy focused on cross-selling of its differing products.
To help bring its plans to life, the company plans more than 20 channel appointments across New South Wales and Victoria. It has also appointed a new Sydney-based group general manager, Michael Hughey, who takes up his new role on July 1.
Hughey is currently general manager of Cellnet’s New Zealand operations, and is credited with building up the Kiwi operation from three staff in 1996, to 100 today.
According to Cellnet, its growth in the New Zealand market has been fuelled by increased handset sales, an annual $150 million per year contract with Telecom New Zealand, and new business opportunities arising from the convergence of data and telecommunications sectors.
In his new job, Hughey will be responsible for overseeing Cellnet’s telecommunications and IT divisions in both Australia and New Zealand and will report directly to Cellnet managing director, Stephen Harrison.
Harrison describes Hughey as an aggressive salesperson who will help push the company’s current $400 annual revenue across Australasia into double-digit growth.
“Michael is going to be aggressively marketing the Cellnet Group,” Harrison said. “There will be cross-selling of products from IT to telecoms gear and sales will also run off our Innovate Roadshow. We have told our dealers we will be more aggressive with more cross-selling and we will lift our profile with more brand awareness.”
Cellnet’s new cross-market push, which begins in July, will include advertising campaigns, point-of-sale packaging and products.
Harrison said Cellnet initially supplied handsets to resellers in the local market.
In 2000, the company bought IT distributor, ITW. Cellnet went from a $35 million domestic supplier to a $140 million business operating both here and in New Zealand. Last year, Cellnet also bought components distributor, Cassa Australia.
Cellnet now supplies 5000 resellers with IT hardware brands including IBM, Sony, Sony-Ericsson, Panasonic, Brother and Canon, and is about to sign deals to double its warehousing space in both Sydney and Melbourne.
To coincide with its expansion, the company is seeking channel managers and key accounts people to boost its operations in Sydney and Melbourne.
Both offices have about 15 staff, and will add at least another 10 in each city over the next 12 months.
Cellnet employs about 200 staff in its Brisbane headquarters, and also maintains an office in Adelaide.