Melbourne online training application service provider Southrock Corp and German e-commerce company Teles AG are jointly setting up Southrock Europe AG.
Teles will take a 60 per cent stake in the joint venture with Southrock taking the remainder. Teles is also taking a 9 per cent equity stake in Southrock.
Southrock Europe will add to Southrock's global operations, which include offices in Melbourne and San Francisco. Its board of directors, comprising two Southrock and three Teles executives, will jointly develop a business and marketing plan. Southrock will provide online training technology and further technology will be developed by both companies, according to Chris Leptos, Southrock's CEO.
Following Teles' new stake in Southrock Corp, the 40 per cent equity held by major shareholder Allen and Buckeridge will be diluted. However, the 20 per cent equity held by Interim Services in Southrock will remain unchanged, with Interim also having the option of increasing its holding in the company.
Teles will use Southrock's technology to deliver online IT training to as many as 30,000 German students this year via its wholly owned Internet Academy. The academy, established to meet severe IT shortages in Germany and Europe, is the largest online training initiative in Europe, according to Teles. Southrock has an option to take a 6 per cent stake in the Internet Academy, Leptos said.
The German students will form part of the one million active learners that Southrock aims to teach this year. Southrock's ASP model allows customers to download, use and pay for training management software from the internet on a course-by-course basis.
Southrock employs 40 staff and is predicting revenue of almost $10 million in 2001, up from $4 million in 2000.