Former Compuware CEO John Debrincat has set up a distributor seeking resellers and business partners for a range of German-made web store-front software.
Debrincat, MD at the new Sydney-based distributor -- dubbed eCorner -- said it was formed in December specifically to push store-front and back-office business application ePages into the Australasian market.
'It is a leader or number two in the e-business market in Europe, but wasn't represented in Australia and New Zealand at all,' he said. 'So what we are doing here is setting up a business to sell it here, fundamentally through partner companies.'
Debrincat said eCorner had signed a master distribution agreement with German developer ePages, which had sold 600,000 licences and had 32,000 customers for its self-titled software in Europe.
Large or small companies could use the software, and SMBs in particular were a largely untapped market for such software, he said.
'It helps you set up a web-based store-front to sell your products and services. The big difference from others around is it is a total application solution. It has front-office but has back-office capability - catalogue manager, shipping manager [et cetera],' he said.
eCorner sought local resellers, service providers, developers, hosting and implementation partners for the software. Resellers targeting niche or vertical markets could be a particular focus, he said.
'I really left [Compuware] to do this. I had been looking at doing something myself. In the past, I have started companies and helped build them up,' Debrincat said. 'Working for a US company gives you a lot of money but it doesn't give you a lot of fun at times.'
Demand for the product already existed locally. Companies such as Dick Smith Electronics had previously gone directly to ePages to buy the software, he said.
Debrincat said the timing was right for a more broad-based entry into the Australian market. Broadband internet was on the cusp of widespread uptake - a state Europe had reached a couple of years ago.
eCorner is aiming to provide support to resellers via its in-house team of seven, and offices in Sydney and Melbourne. Marketing support and training will also be on offer, he said.
Partners would earn rewards relating to their specialisation. Hosting or implementation partners would be able to get special prices, for example, while resellers in general would earn a 25 percent commission, Debrincat said.
The company had aimed at doing $1 million of business in the first year, but had made sales already, he added, and got a lot of leads from a product launch at Sydney's CeBIT trade show this week.
'Our plan was that nothing would happen in the first quarter, but something did happen,' Debrincat said.
Bernhard Marbach, German-based vice-president of sales at ePages, said eCorner had in-depth knowledge of ePages. '[eCorner] will be able to provide first line support to our customers in Australasia and ... open up new and interesting markets for us,' Marbach said in a statement.