NetApp closes New Zealand office

Storage market high-flier Network Appliance, which has laid off its two New Zealand staff, is in denial about ever having had an office in this country.

Storage market high-flier Network Appliance, which has laid off its two New Zealand staff, is in denial about ever having had an office in this country.

But the man who since June last year has run it, Dave Adams, says he was employed as the New Zealand manager.

The Californian storage vendor shut down the Auckland-based operation following a world wide restructure. It says it never had a local office, preferring to use the word “presence”.

Adams’ description of his role is backed up by a visit to the Network Appliance website, which on September 3 listed Network Appliance, New Zealand and gave Adams’ address and contact numbers. But in a press statement, the company’s Australia and New Zealand managing director, Michael Burnie, Network Appliance tells it differently.

“We have never had an office in this country so there wasn’t one to close. We did have a channel sales representative for a while but given [distributor] Infinity’s [Solutions] continuing success on our behalf, the position couldn’t any longer be justified.”

Adams set up Network Appliance New Zealand in June 2000, before which he was Network Appliance brand manager at sole distributor Trilogy (now Infinity Solutions) for 20 months.

Adams says he can’t understand why the office was shut down. “I think it was purely a dollars value exercise,” he says. Adams, who says he introduced the product to New Zealand during his time with Trilogy, says Network Appliance had grown from nothing to a $15 million business.

More than 30 local organisations, including Air New Zealand, Weta Digital, Telstra Saturn, Ericsson, TAB, DataMail and ClearNet, have bought storage gear from the company.

Meanwhile, Network Appliance was anxious to stress the company’s success in this country and did not want the impression conveyed that it had closed down a New Zealand office. A spokesman for Network Appliance Australia said the decision to drop Adams was not personal, but follows a worldwide directive.

Adams says he is looking at other opportunities in the storage market. A systems engineer who was also laid off has been hired by Infinity Solutions.

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