The Building Depot is the latest retailer to sign up with application service provider Always There.
Owned by Fletcher Building, The Building Depot has 10 outlets throughout New Zealand selling building materials, hardware and home improvement products aimed at the do-it-yourself market.
Always There, which specialises in providing IT services to medium sized retail chains, is providing the firm with a retail management and point-of-sale system, AdvanceRetail, accessed by staff via Compaq thin clients running Windows CE.
Other Always There users include Rattrays Wholesale and Wellington-based call centre service AM/PM Calling.
Always There managing director Martin Shelton says the retail sector has a better understanding of thin client and ASP technology than it did 18 months ago. Always There was formed in April 2000 by point-of-sale specialist Eftpos NZ, which is owned by ANZ. Services offered to retailers include retail software, email, web access and Eftpost processing.
It has just signed a four-year, $4 million contract with Telecom Advanced Solutions for a VPN and earlier this year signed a five-year $10 million contract with Hitachi Data Systems which provides the data centre on which Always There is based.
The VPN contract strengthens ties between Always There owner ANZ and Telecom Advanced Solutions, with which ANZ has a major outsourcing contract.