MEXICAN DEAL IS HOT LINK TO THE FUTURE

Written on the 14 May 2012

MEXICAN DEAL IS HOT LINK TO THE FUTURE

AFTER just 16 months in business, Gold Coast company Opmantek has secured a breakthrough software licensing agreement with Mexico’s leading telecommunications company, Telmex, in what could be a pioneering step towards establishing the region as an IT hub.

Opmantek CEO Danny Maher (pictured) tells Gold Coast Business News Telmex has signed a deal to license all of its groundbreaking network management software and modules for use across its vast Latin American subscriber base.

Telmex (Teléfonos de Mexico) has more than 7.3 million broadband subscribers, nearly three times as many as Australia’s largest telco, Telstra. The company is owned by billionaire Carlos Slim, who has been a fixture in the world’s richest Top 10 for the past decade.

The agreement is initially worth about $500,000, but Maher says Opmantek will provide ongoing operational support to Telmex from its Gold Coast headquarters. That could see the deal grow into a multimillion dollar arrangement, he says.

Maher predicts the groundbreaking contract with Telmex will help promote the Gold Coast as an ideal home-base location for IT business.

“The Gold Coast economy must diversify and we are proof it can be done with ITbased business,’’ he says.

Through its locally devised Network Management Information System (NMIS), Opmantek specialises in developing and delivering software add-ons, services and support agreements that assist in quickly identifying system faults within open source (free) technology.

The speed at which NMIS operates allows licensees to restrict losses from system outages and generate revenue-earning opportunities from improved operations, says Maher.

More than 10,000 customers have downloaded Opmantek’s NMIS.

“The majority of those customers are overseas, and it probably doesn’t matter to most of them where we are based," he says.

“But from a company point of view, the Gold Coast is a terrific place for an IT company to do business. The region offers a great lifestyle, which helps maintain a low turnover of staff which is so important in our industry."

Opmantek currently has a staff of around 10, but is looking to expand as more licenses head offshore.

“In dealing with overseas customers, we have to consider bringing on board people who can help us overcome any language barriers that may arise in delivering our service backups," says Maher.

Maher says that the agreement with Telmex continues a steady growth curve for Opmantek, which also has an international licensing deal with farm machinery icon, John Deere.

“I couldn’t be happier with where the business is placed right now,’’ he says.

“The flow-on benefits for Opmantek are enormous . . . our low cost commercial open source software model is opening doors right around the world, especially with economic difficulties driving cost reduction further.

“We aim to replicate what we are doing with Telmex in other areas of our business. Eventually, we want to be as big and robust to support arrangements with other big and robust companies like Telmex."

Telmex spokesman Erik Tlatempa says Opmantek’s software had been evaluated against products from several major international IT companies.

“It was a simple decision for us – enhancing our services while reducing our costs," says Tlatempa.

Opmantek was recently awarded a grant from Gold Coast City Council as part of its Investment Attraction Program.

Economic Development and Tourism Committee Chair, Cr Susie Douglas, agreed that Opmantek was helping to enhance the Gold Coast’s reputation as an emerging IT hub.

“The Gold Coast has a fast-growing IT sector,’’ she says. “I’m please to see (Opmantek) securing new international clients and demonstrating the innovation our local businesses are renowned for."


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