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Fight Back '09: Buoyancy in the channel

Fight Back '09: Buoyancy in the channel

All the good news from the channel

The IT industry was invigorated this week with ample channel activity, signs of emerging optimism and the National Broadband Network (NBN) taking its first baby steps.

Distribution Central has taken on communications vendor, Alcatel-Lucent, for its range of voice and data products.

NetWorld Systems, one of the distributor’s business units, is charged with data and security side of the deal while another division, Unity Systems, is focused on voice technology. Both will offer integration and support services to resellers.

While the number four is considered inauspicious in some cultures, Sony’s video and security division reckons it’s a good digit. The vendor has doubled its distribution partners by taking on Q Video Systems and ADI Global Distribution. They join Pacom and Anixter.

Sony video security national business manager, Tony Lagan, expects the indirect sales quartet will help rake in 70 to 80 per cent of the business’ sales revenue.

Another company with high hopes for the channel is security vendor, Blue Coat Systems. Recently appointed channel director, Peter Owen, is turbo-charging reseller activities with the promise of training, sales support and correct implementation of sales programs.

The company is also interested in recruiting resellers to tap in to previously untouched markets, such as data loss prevention.

Moving on to profitable deals, the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) has extended a $604 million end-user computing and centralised computing services contract with HP subsidiary, EDS.

The original agreement, set to finish at the end of June 2010, now stretches to June 30, 2012.

Another company getting lucky with the government is software reseller, Insight, which has become the sole supplier of Microsoft products to the Victorian government. The deal extends to nine of the state’s core departments along with some administrative offices and public sector agencies. Centralised help desk including technical support and Software Asset Management (SAM) will be provided as well.

NSC joined the winners circle, nabbing a tender to provide TPG/Soul with RAD technology for cheap and fast Ethernet services. The collaboration will spawn a new broadband Ethernet service called Ethernet over First Mile (EFM) that will deliver speeds of up to 10Mbps.

Broadband was definitely a hot topic this week. The Federal Government has finally kickstarted its NBN project, opening a tender process for candidates to build, operate and maintain the backbone fibre to regional towns.

As part of the Regional Backbone Blackspot Program, the first locations to receive the NBN treatment include Wonthaggi, Leongatha, Korumburra, Inverlock, Foster, Yarram, Victor Harbor, Broken Hill, Darwin, Geraldton, Emerald and Longreach.

The Government will retain ownership of the fibre assets and associated infrastructure.

In related news, a survey by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) has revealed that Australian companies took in $81 billion over the Internet in the 2007/08 financial year. This is a huge jump from the previous financial year, which was recorded a comparatively meagre $67.6 billion.

Another survey also showed favourable results. Hudson recruitment firm’s Employment Expectations indicated 12.3 per cent of IT employers were looking to boost permanent staff numbers in the next quarter. This was the first time in over a year that employment confidence was up.

Good news is rife, even in this precarious economy. You just need to know where to look. Visit ARN Fight Back for a daily dose of optimism.


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