Certus to acquire another Australian IBM specialist

Consulting firm makes another buy across the Tasman, following earlier purchase in February

New Zealand-based Certus Solutions is buying an Australian specialist IBM software and services company, Focus Strategies and Solutions.

CEO Brian Allan says the buy-out is strategic in that Focus is the market leader in IBM business analytics and information management solutions. It has more than 125 customers in the corporate and government sectors in Australia and has been IBM’s business partner of the year for the past four years.

Certus is thought to be the region’s largest pure play IBM software and services company.

Focus, which was founded eight years ago, has annual revenue of more than $A13 million. It has offices in Sydney, Melbourne, Perth and Canberra. Managing director Tom Reich will continue in the role.

Allan says the Focus acquisition completes Certus’ IBM portfolio. In 2008, it had bought Utility AP in New Zealand, and in 2009 acquired EOS (Lotus Notes, Websphere). Earlier this year, it bought Software Traction (Rational) in Australia.

The latest acquisition takes Certus’ income forecast to $A65 million and its headcount to more than 160.

“We have funded all these transactions ourselves,” Allan says. “We will take on a fractional amount of extra funding for the Focus buy.”

For Certus, revenue in this country is around $NZ50 million annually. Allan says the company is experiencing significant organic growth. “We’ve been growing at 40-60 percent per annum,” he claims.

The company plans to utilise Focus Solutions’ business intelligence and analytics skills in the New Zealand market, which will make the company directly competitive with IBM’s business partner CDP, which was a Cognos agent before IBM acquired Cognos.

“Certus customers will welcome the additional depth of expertise in business intelligence, data warehousing and analytics solutions,” he believes.

Certus employs the largest specialist team of IBM-certified professionals across Australia and New Zealand.

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Tags Certusfocus strategies and solutions

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