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Five local partners form ICT-Alliance

Five local partners form ICT-Alliance

Each of the five partners house their own specialisation skill sets.

Clockwise from top left: Peter Papaioannou (Citrus), Semyon Taskin (Ip.Glass), Anthony Buckton (Black Ink), Ivan Evans (Alsta), Dan Barker (Citrus).

Clockwise from top left: Peter Papaioannou (Citrus), Semyon Taskin (Ip.Glass), Anthony Buckton (Black Ink), Ivan Evans (Alsta), Dan Barker (Citrus).

Credit: ICT-A

Five IT services providers, Alsta Systems, Citrus Solutions, Black Ink Networks, Ip.Glass and Fsproserv, have banded together to form a new alliance dubbed the 'Information Communication Technology – Alliance' (ICT-A).

The five partners each house specialisations in specific technology areas based on each of their reputations across advisory, engineering and specialist skillsets covering data centre, collaboration, cyber security, SP-networks, enterprise networks, high grade Wi-Fi, SD-WAN, SD-LAN, public and private cloud, day-2 operations, project management and even physical building planning and fit out.

Alsta Systems general manager Ivan Evans has been credited as the driving force behind the alliance, spotting an opportunity in the market after realising no single ICT-A member could offer all the solutions to a customer alone, particularly to the high standard they each uphold.

“For quite some time, the alliance members have been working informally together, the ICT-A enables us to work together as an extended virtual team to deliver outstanding results for our customers that we believe are second to none,” Evans said.

“We work well together, there is very little overlap or rivalry so the co-operation and teaming continue as usual, however leveraging the ICT-A brand and logo we feel that we can compete for more clients and respond with more formality where tenders may dictate a broader solution set than an individual member could offer.”

Citrus Solutions sales director Dan Barker said the company was building an alliance with other like-minded partners it can implicitly trust.

For example, if Citrus was working on a collaboration opportunity with a customer and was asked about cyber security or data centre skills, it would typically have to walk away from the opportunity even though the customer wants to work with Citrus, according to Barker.

“We didn’t have the skills. Now I have the alliance I can bring in a party that I trust and can fulfill this skillset. This also works vice versa, where we have been pulled into opportunities where another partner lacks collaboration skills,” he said. 

Citrus Solutions managing director Peter Papaioannou added that this was one way customers get what they want and the partner is also successful.

“We can now compete with the bigger partners as the alliance,” he said. “Customers have benefited from dealing with a locally owned brand and relationship that they know and trust, while gaining access to world-class delivery covering a wider set of high grade advisors and engineers.

“Creating the ICT-A brand for a collection of specialist organisations that work well together helps our customers understand that they can maintain the relationship with the existing brand and logo they trust and seamlessly access a wider set of skills through the ICT-A, whilst maintaining the benefit of dealing with a locally owned and operated organisation.”

So far, ICT-A has worked together on several large accounts across media, education, health, government and enterprise accounts with projects covering building campus environments, data centres and cloud migrations, operational transformation, solution upgrades and updates.

ICT-A member partnerships span across Cisco, Dell, FireEye, MNF Group, Juniper Networks, Zoom, Macquarie Telecom, Arista, Fortinet, Cisco Meraki and Calabrio.

Black Ink Networks director solution architect Anthony Buckton added that as technology constantly progresses and new trends emerge, each member maintains industry knowledge in their own way, through vendor relationships, seminars, training and customer experiences.

“As we work closely together on projects, the ICT-A has an open-book policy on sharing non-confidential information so that generalist knowledge flows across team members,” Buckton said. “This enables the broadest set of generalist knowledge whilst maintaining specialist skillsets and capability.”

Ip.Glass managing director Semyon Taskin said the market opportunity for the collective organisation was huge. 

“We believe that by leveraging the ICT-A brand our previously informal working relationships will be recognised by a far larger customer base,” Taskin said.

Fsproserv general manager Simon Moore concluded that there was no reason that the ICT-A could not take on and win any account of any size.

“Working together we have the people, the decades of experience in the technology and we have the relationships required to deliver truly world-class results,” he said.

The alliance is not the first such beast to be birthed from the local IT channel industry.

One example is Cloud Collective, which came together in 2017, with partners Antares Solutions, Modality Systems and Quorum joining forces to take on large system integrators and service providers across Australia. 

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Tags ciscoDelljuniper networksCitrus SolutionsBlack Ink NetworksAlsta SystemsfsproservIp.Glass

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