Homegrown voice and data player seeks partners

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Australian voice and data products vendor System Solutions has begun seeking resellers for its new homegrown Windows-compatible VoIP portfolio.

Australian voice and data products vendor System Solutions has begun seeking resellers for its new homegrown Windows-compatible VoIP portfolio.

Michael Warnock, the newly appointed Asia-Pacific general manager for System Solutions, said the company sought integrators, resellers of Cisco-type products, and switch maker partners for its voice offerings.

The company wanted five more certified partners by the end of this financial year, he said.

System Solutions was until recently known mainly for its data services using fax and telex. However, the vendor - a Microsoft certified partner - had begun pushing voice as well. It had voice XML-based products for Windows platforms, he said.

"We don't play in the Unix or Linux space," Warnock said. "But we have been operating in the traditional TDM (Time Division Multiplexing) and recently in the IP space as well."

The 22-year-old company had revised its three tier channel program with a view to attracting more voice partners for its shrink wrapped and customised products, he said.

Historically, its partners comprised data companies such as Tower Software, Volante and Dr Notes and global players such as CSC, EDS, IBM and HP, he said.

The channel program would not change much, but would hopefully net more indirect sales. It would still have three tiers - entry-level, reseller and certified - but would have lower buy prices for some partners.

The company had also ramped up training for its partners' sales and technical teams, Warnock said.

"But our involvement with our channel was a little bit remote," he said. "We would say, if you want our help come to us."

System Solutions had promised to be more proactive in helping its channel as part of the revised channel program, Warnock said.

"Now it's more of a two-way street," he said.

The company does 70 percent direct sales against 30 percent indirect. However, its direct team was only permitted to take a sale when the customer requested it. Otherwise, all leads must be passed to the channel, he claimed.

Warnock said the company's data sales were "perhaps surprisingly" still going strong. While there had been an initial move away from fax services as email grew in popularity, nowadays companies were moving back to fax for specific purposes.

When users required more security or, for example, to sight a signature, documentation was once again being sent by fax, Warnock said.

The data products - some of which integrated with ERP software - added value to what System Solutions could offer potential partners, he said.

"We thought we would have a greater downturn [in data] than we have had," Warnock said.
The vendor was planning a partner meet on 23 November in Sydney, sponsored by Intel and Microsoft, he added.

System Solutions had offices in Sydney, Melbourne and Auckland.

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