Nextgen Distribution has made the jump across the ditch and began operations in New Zealand on October 1.
Nextgen distributes Oracle, Arista Networks, Violin Memory, Nominum, Objectivity and ZTE.
“I have a strong affiliation and respect for New Zealand and the opportunity, so it was always part of our growth plans. However, due to that respect, I was always nervous about just appointing a business development manager and managing that role from Australia,” founder and managing director, John Walters said.
"I look forward to representing our vendors with increased focus and reach.”
The distie has entered into an agreement with Kiwi channel luminary, Terry Dunn, who takes a ‘significant’ stake in the new venture and will run Nextgen in New Zealand as its managing director.
While Nextgen Distribution in New Zealand intends to run independently as a local business, Australia will still retain majority share.
Dunn has worked in the New Zealand IT VAR market for several years and was the founder of VAD which was acquired by Ingram Micro in 2009.
“The opportunity to work with John and the Nextgen team from Australia was compelling," he said.
"Nextgen has a built its reputation in Australia by helping partners deliver enterprise solutions. Recently, I spent some time with several of Nextgen’s Australian partners and we will be working hard in NZ to emulate the levels of customer satisfaction they told me they are experiencing,” Dunn said.
“I look forward to reconnecting with the great channel community we have in NZ and growing Nextgen NZ into one of the best value added Distributors in NZ.”
Nextgen NZ will boast two staff in Parnell, Auckland, working sales and sales support roles, and one in New Zealand’s capital, Wellington, pushing for Government contracts. Two have been hired already, and another is in discussions. This compares to rival Avnet’s one staff member in NZ. Walters says there will be little overlap.
Walters describes the company’s role as a ‘conduit’ for his vendors, and that his reputation for intimate customer relations should provide the value add channel partners are looking for.
Key for Nextgen’s growth in the NZ market will be the partnership with vendor Oracle.
Oracle vice-president of Alliances and Channels ANZ, Patricia Nance, said the multi-national is looking forward to working with Nextgen.
“Oracle Australia New Zealand is pleased that our value added distributor, Nextgen Distribution, is expanding its operations into the New Zealand market. The Nextgen New Zealand operation will include a local managing director, staff and expertise to help to support Oracle Partner Network in New Zealand,” said Nance.
So what does Walters believe will be Nextgen NZ’s unique value add proposition?
1) It’s a New Zealand led company with limited interference from Australia
2) 100 per cent New Zealand staff
3) A superior on the ground presence across different roles and geographical locations.
4) Walters and Dunn aim to make the NZ operation focused on vendor ‘go-to-market’ programmes
5) A strong channel enablement strategy, including training programmes and programme demos
While the new entity has yet to pull in any new Kiwi clients due to the secrecy of the operation, Walters said the company has taken its Australian clients with it, and is already in negotiations with some new New Zealand partners.
Walters said the company’s stated aim in the New Zealand market will be to gain “majority share for all of our vendors within twelve months”.
Dunn agreed, but added the goal in NZ is not to ‘chase the volume guys’ but to provide a quality service and solid high end solutions in the enterprise space. He said there is plenty of opportunity in a marketplace that has seen perhaps too much consolidation in recent years.
“It’s exciting. It’s been a tough time working to get to this point, but we’ve stuck to our guns and I feel we have a great proposition for our customers,” Dunn said.