Victorian systems integrator Digital Persona has been recognised as the most innovative Novell partner for Australia and New Zealand at the vendor’s annual Asia-Pacific Partner Awards in Thailand. Director Mark Lowe expressed delight at winning the award but said he was not surprised after a hot streak saw Digital Persona convert 13 Microsoft clients as well as signing up more than 30 new Novell customers during the past 18 months. “The company was formed more than three years ago by a group of engineers tired of working for larger IT organisations and ripping out good technology for the sake of making a Microsoft sale,” Lowe said. “It wasn’t always in the best interest of the client and a lot of our recent success has been a result of putting Novell back in two or three years down the track.” Lowe also attributed a lot of his company’s growth during the past year-and-a-half to the management and client referrals of Wayne Lording, Novell’s channel manager for Victoria. It was Lording who nominated Digital Persona for the award, which was judged by senior management. Novell general manager for A/NZ, David Lenz, praised Digital Persona for its strong understanding of the vendor’s web and secure identity management solutions. Lowe accepted the gong in Thailand, where more than 100 Novell business partners had gathered for an all expenses paid three-day event. New Zealand outfit, TechTonics, took out the Regional Partner of the Year award.