Cogent renews Alcatel premium partner status

Cogent accelerates move into the VoIP and data space, says general manager

Alcatel has fast-tracked Cogent to become a premier partner in New Zealand following Cogent’s purchase of the telecommunications business of the defunct GDC.

GDC had been a premium partner but its agreement had lapsed.

Cogent general manager Stephan Goodburn says his company went through the process quickly, then negotiated a new agreement. “They fast-tracked us. It would normally have taken a few months.”

He says Cogent now has almost 200 staff, 60 of whom are selling voice products and 27 of whom came across from GDC. “We didn’t offer all of the GDC staff jobs and a few who we did declined.

“This accelerates our movement into the voice over IP and data space.”

Goodburn says Cogent hasn’t lost any of the GDC customers through the acquisition.

Alcatel’s other premium partner, DownerCommspec, has picked up 12 of the former GDC staff, says general manager Ian Hall. He says his company has been approached by some GDC customers.

It’s clear that competition is picking up in the data space. Hall says his parent company, Downer, is actively in discussions with “a couple” of IT companies about potential acquisition.

GDC itself has been placed in receivership by its directors.

A statement to the NZX says: “While the directors and management have worked hard to conclude a sale of the remaining field services business unit, it is apparent that it would not be possible to conclude a transaction quickly enough to provide net benefits for the company compared to proceeding into receivership.” The statement goes on to say “the directors are hopeful that the majority of field services personnel will be offered employment by the other field services contracting companies, with whom discussions have been held.”

All GDC’s directors have resigned.

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