itX has taken the wrappers off a new niche distribution business specialising in mobile asset tracking and communicationsproducts. The revamped Nexos division is one of several strategies the ASX-listed distributor is investing in to expand out of traditional IT.
Nexos has secured distribution deals with UK-based vendor, Minorplanet, for its range of fleet and asset management tools, as well as GPS tracking products vendor, Pinpoint Communications. It is now looking to bring on systems integrators to on-sell the products and services.
Nexos general manager, Jim McKinlay, said the division had been working with several vendors in the mobile resource management (MRM) space for a few years, initially as an agent and services provider. The Nexos division is manned by 15 staff and stems from an amalgamation of itX’s Glenhurst acquisition in 2005 and its former Alstom IT managed services and support team. The itX management team acquired Alstom IT’s Australian assets in 2004.
A major step forward for Nexo was a contract with Telstra to project manage and deploy GPS tracking and mapping solutions to the telco’s 7600 vehicle fleet.
McKinlay said Nexos’ charter was to deliver niche products and services distinct from itX’s dealer channels. Through its contract with Telstra, the company established relationships with 43 radio-based installers nationally.
“Many installers started asking if they could buy the products from us to install in vans, trucks or courier companies they dealt with daily, but we weren’t a distributor so we couldn’t,” McKinlay said. At the same time, customers putting these tracking devices into the field were increasingly requiring systems integration work to get the data back into their ERP systems, he said.
“We decided to turn this into a niche distribution business and take the product out to systems integrators and help them with our national infrastructure,” he said.
Nexo is now actively seeking systems integrators who want to come on-board. The company will manage the relationship between them and the installers and provide support using its configuration and services capabilities, McKinlay said.
There are no specific requirements around which integrators can take the products on, but those already selling laptops and mobile technologies were an initial area of focus, he said. The Nexos team has been piloted its offering with select itX systems integrators over the past six months.