Ariba shuts down NZ office

E-commerce software vendor Ariba has closed its New Zealand operation.

The hazards of being a New Zealand subsidiary of a struggling US parent are being felt by Ariba New Zealand.

The company has shut its New Zealand office with the loss of two jobs, despite New Zealand manager Mark Heard saying he was hitting local business targets.

"We had achieved our personal numbers," Heard says; however, a decision was made globally to centralise operations. The New Zealand market will now be run from Sydney.

"It's just a phase and they're just being realistic about the market. They view New Zealand as tiny."

Ariba partner esolutions was unaware of the move when contacted by Computerworld. The Telecom-Microsoft-EDS alliance offers an ASP (application service provider) version of Ariba Buyer. Telecom is esolutions' only Ariba Buyer ASP customer to date.

Acting esolutions general manager Sue McCarty she had heard nothing about the decision but later had it confirmed by Ariba Australia. "It doesn't change anything with our relationship at all. Our main contacts are in Australia and it's not supported locally."

Auckland-based marketplace OneZone, which is based on Ariba, receives most of its support from Ariba in Australia and the US.

Hewlett-Packard New Zealand will also know next week whether local jobs will be lost as a result of 6000 layoffs in the US. New Zealand manager Barry Hastings will be in Singapore this week hearing what impact the cuts will have here.

He says HP New Zealand has lifted sales in local currency, but once the exchange rate is taken into account, it will be returning less to the US this year than last.

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