US vendor Inquisite has signed its first Australian reseller and seeks more to target what it believes is a multi-million dollar opportunity for its web survey software and services in Australia.
Meg Murphy, vice president of business development at Texas-based Inquisite, said the vendor had signed Queensland-based Pathway Consultants as its first Australian reseller.
"We are in discussions with another Australian company to provide a re-branded solution to the hospitality sector," he said. "We are actively pursuing additional resellers by geographic region, vertical or application focus."
Murphy said Inquisite was targeting the Australian equivalent to the Fortune 1000, government, large associations, universities and not-for-profit organisations. Later on, the company would also aim at SMBs, she said.
Inquisite would recruit an unspecified, diverse number of partners to target different parts of the market.
"While we are open to a master distribution relationship, we think a niche focus and selecting the best partner for a specific vertical or region makes the most sense," Murphy said.
"Inquisite is focused on quality, not quantity."
Murphy said Inquisite would choose partners for their fields of expertise, depth of knowledge, years of service, and passionate commitment to customer success. Partners would get a full range of support, including internal-use licences.
Resellers could access several programs, ranging from an independent sales agent to a full VAR relationship. "[That's] one in which they are responsible for providing sales and technical support while also offering complimentary solutions," she said.
Inquisite started in 1997 and aimed to help organisations gather intelligence that could help them make better strategic decisions. Inquisite’s first offering was a desktop application designed to simplify the survey process for a single user, Murphy said.
"Over time, this application evolved into a sophisticated enterprise application with a host of features geared for non-technical users of any size and budget," she said.
Inquisite products included single-user software, hosted ASP offerings and enterprise applications that could be installed at a customer's site. Disciplines covered included human resources, customer satisfaction, marketing, market research and new product development, she said.
"Meaningful surveying is the most cost-effective means to taking the pulse of critical customer and employee relationships. Asking your customers what they think and how they feel shows that you are interested in their opinion and paying attention to their needs," Murphy said.
Previously, Inquisite had supported its Australian customers directly. Many clients had found the company by searching online. However, the company believed local partners could provide the best service and support, she said.
"Australia has had one of the most outstanding economies in recent years. Relatively speaking, it’s a high-growth, low-inflation, low interest rate economy," Murphy said.
"There is a stable government sector, a flexible labour market and a very competitive business sector, all of which contribute to an excellent expansion opportunity for us."
Companies tended to lose half their customer base every five years. Meanwhile, the cost of acquiring and keeping customers kept going up. So it was becoming more important for companies of all sizes and in all sectors to find better ways to do CRM, Murphy suggested.
"We deliver three core benefits: enterprise power, operational simplicity, and measurable value," Murphy said. "A strong reseller presence could generate several million dollars [for us] during the first few years with no upper limit."