Dimension Data on the move in Auckland

Two years after the merger of Datacraft, Axon and Integral, staff will be housed in the same building

Dimension Data will move into new Auckland premises in March, physically bringing together what were once three separate operations.

The IT services company, formerly known as Datacraft, bought Integral/Axon in November 2010. The purchase came after Integral bought Axon in May that same year.

Northern regional manager Simon Gillespie, who has overseen the merger in Auckland, says for the past two years the company has retained three separate offices -- Grafton (previously Datacraft's offices), Greenlane (Integral) and Newmarket (Axon).

The company has 350 staff in the northern region, out of a total of 650 staff in New Zealand. Dimension Data is owned by the Japanese telco giant NTT. Following the reorganistion in Auckland, will Wellington remain the headquarters?

"They like to think so, Robin [Hartendorp, chief executive] is in Wellington" says Gillespie. "I like to think we're a single branch in two locations."

Gillespie says the Viaduct location will mean the company is closer to its technology partners - Cisco, IBM and Microsoft - as well as its clients. He says he is also hoping the central Auckland location will attract new staff. Prior to Christmas the company had 24 open positions - with skills in Microsoft desktop migration and infrastructure especially sought after, says Gillespie.

Dimension Data's enterprise clients include ASB Bank, Tower Insurance, Air New Zealand, Auckland University, Vector, and Genesis Energy.

Gillespie says that the "market's swirling around a bit, but there are some familiar faces", citing Datacom, HP, IBM and Gen-i as both competitors and technology partners.

According to Gillespie the company has no plans for further acquisitions. But having overseen the merger of three companies, does Gillespie have any advice for Vodafone with its recent acquisition of TelstraClear?

"Be prepared to deal with the fall out. When you smash organisations together fast, you get issues. They come up, they're unavoidable," he says. "My advice would be 'do it fast, smash them together, but make sure your senior leadership team is paying attention and is ready to deal with the issues when they arise."

Dimension Data hit the headlines last year as the company which audited Work and Income's public access kiosks and found security flaws, but its report to the Ministry of Social Development does not appear to have been acted upon.

"We got quite a bit of profile out of it and I think the story has been gone over but the story is we were asked to test the systems and the report's been released now and if you look at paragraph four of the executive summary you will see that we found the problem," Gillespie says.

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