To achieve this specialised offering, Thomas is seeking a blend of technical and sales capabilities, as he builds a team of data experts from scratch.
“We’re bringing on board coders in the first instance,” he added.
Through bolstering his technical team, Thomas recently recruited Oriel CTO, Richard Mitton, with the industry veteran swapping telecommunications for the start-up scene.
Mitton has taken up the lead technology role at the emerging business, and is tasked with building out the start-up technology portfolio in the year ahead.
“We’re also creating a sales front for the business but we will have a real range of expertise,” he added. “There will be real code-heavy, tech guys that are very strong around the latest coding technologies, statistics, maths and databases.”
Looking ahead, Thomas is targeting those will strong skills in combining algorithms and technology, with plans in place to hire “10 to 12 employees” during the next ten months.
“That will provide critical mass and then hopefully we can really take-off,” he added.
Inspired by the future potential of smart technologies in the workplace, Thomas’ strategy aligns with that of key vendors such as Microsoft and IBM, vendors that have made intelligence a key priority for the future.
“Microsoft has said that this is where the market is heading, and IBM are aiming to win through Watson,” he added. “The market is moving towards analytics and machine learning.
“Businesses can deploy Watson into an IT sales domain, putting in information about vendors, resellers, media data, customers and staff.
"They could then turn it around as a system for every sales and pre-sales employee to utilise in a sales-focused organisation.
“The result is a much more informed workforce. You could even have a natural language assistant beside you and you could ask - I’m on my way to a meeting, how many desktops does this business have?
"What version are they running on? What did we last sell them? Who were the last three members from our business who touched the customer?”
For Thomas, this shows that merely collecting and processing data is half the story.
Rather, an opportunity exists for Australian leaders to use real-time analytics to gain business value from data, transforming decision making from reactive to proactive as a result.
From a vendor perspective, AtlasPlato is currently in conversations with Splunk, Domo and Pivotal around striking new partnerships in the market, with further discussions at play with organisations yet to hit Australia.
“There are a couple of start-ups that we are in early stage discussions with that haven’t got a sales team, but they have been working for several years on a clever piece of software that allows you to look through disparate sets of data,” he added.
“We will essentially be the sales front for these companies into Australia and will stitch it together with a couple of other things such as our consultative services. It’s not going to be out of the box stuff.”
Through leveraging his extensive relationships within the channel ecosystem, Thomas’ aim in the market is simple, to “undercut” typical conversations.
“We talk about disruptive vendors and we’re not expecting to be sitting on the edge of these organisations - we’re going straight in and having longer-term strategic conversations,” he added.
“We’re keen to invest - we’re not bootstrapping here and hoping it works. This year we will build the foundations to achieve $50 million revenue by year five with a corresponding $100 million valuation.”