Locals ramp up NSW business after desktop PC panel announced

Locals ramp up NSW business after desktop PC panel announced

Local assemblers, ASI Solutions and Optima, are gearing up for a renewed attack on NSW Government business after winning spots on the state's locals-only desktop PC panel.

The Contract 2000 whole-of-government supplier panel covers desktop, notebook and server procurement. Three multinationals have also been approved as desktop PC suppliers: Acer, Lenovo and HP. Dell, which was involved in the original panel and had submitted a bid under the new tender, has been dumped. The notebook and server supplier lists are expected to be finalised in June.

The panel covers about 280,000 machines and is expected to be worth $175 million annually. It replaces the ITS2000 panel, which expired on April 30. Contract 2000 will run for three years, with two 12-month extension options.

Alongside product procurement, suppliers need to offer a range of services, including loading standard operating environments, decommissioning and asset disposal, at a fixed price.

For the first time, NSW Commerce has created a locals-only desktop PC list to sit alongside the multinationals panel. Up to 20 per cent of these sales are expected to be allotted to local manufacturers. It is still unclear how this breakdown will be monitored.

ASI Solutions communications manager, Craig Quinn, said it was planning to ramp up activities in NSW to take advantage of its newly secured panel position.

"We're obviously very pleased to be on the panel - it's a significant win for us," he said. "We've gone through a number of years seeing our traditional market decline, which has made us rethink what we are doing and how we do it. But I think we still have good, strong products and value to offer."

ASI's strongest source of NSW government business has historically been the Department of Education and Training (DET).

Quinn said it would focus heavily on that space. DET is expected to announce the next PC rollout phase under its $544 million Technology4Learning program in early Q3. The four-year contract covers a total of 100,000 units.

While desktop PCs under Contract 2000 would still be based on Windows XP, Quinn said Vista-ready, dual-core machines were becoming more widespread. The new panel arrangement also placed more emphasis on remote management capabilities.

Optima chairman and managing director, Cornel Ung, was also pleased by the announcement.

He said the company would look to extend its reach across other NSW Government agencies. Existing customers include DET, the Roads and Traffic Authority, Department of Commerce and the Department of Corrective Services.

The panel results were also good news for the channel, Acer government, corporate and education general manager, Mike Cefai, said. The vendor will fulfill all sales via NSW channel partners: Commander, Leading Solutions and Dataflex.

"It's a fantastic opportunity. We've got onto Victorian whole-of-government, where Lenovo was unsuccessful and HP is restricted to supplying AMDonly machines, and now we're on NSW without Dell," Cefai said.

Acer would aggressively target Dell accounts, he said.

"This is a great gain for resellers - we will look to take Dell's marketshare, which has all been direct," he said. "It will open up a lot of new departments to us and expand sales in that state. This will also help us grow overall marketshare and move towards that number one spot."

Acer has recruited several staff in NSW to help tackle the new arrangement, Cefai said.

HP said it was also delighted to be involved in the new panel, but could not comment further.

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