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ARN spotlight on: Western Australia's TechBrain

ARN spotlight on: Western Australia's TechBrain

The Perth-based MSP shares how it made its business model work and what's next

Mike Fernando (TechBrain)

Mike Fernando (TechBrain)

Credit: TechBrain

The 'ARN spotlight on' series explores partners operating in the local channel landscape right around the country, from Cape York to Hobart, Byron Bay to Fremantle and beyond. In this edition, we focus on Western Australia and West Perth-based partner TechBrain.

While it makes sense for a managed service provider (MSP) to cater to the area they’re based in, recent data has caused West Perth-based TechBrain to look further afield and expand the scope of its business.

TechBrain began in 2002 as Blue Networks and Technology, founded by Mike Fernando and Colin Thompson with the aim of being an IT support partner for small businesses in Perth.

The MSP saw strong growth over the following decade, finding a name for itself in the medical and professional services industries.

Then in 2016, the business rebranded as TechBrain under new ownership, moved to a fixed fee offering and opened itself up to non-profit and local government businesses.

Following the rebranding, over financial years 2018 and 2019 the MSP experienced 84 per cent growth.

In more recent times, the 25-employee-strong MSP has seen a further 37 per cent growth in the first six months of financial year 2020.

Expanding the footprint

Speaking to ARN, Mike Fernando, general manager, cited that the Western Australia area is home to over 25,000 business, government and non-profit organisations with 10 to 200 employees, according to Census data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

These organisations make up TechBrain’s target market.

However, Keegan Crage, non-executive director, highlighted that the MSP has its eye on an even larger slice of the pie: the nearly 300,000 business, government and non-profit organisations with 10 to 200 employees on the east coast of Australia.

“What we've identified is that the SME (small- to medium-sized enterprise) IT support space is moving quite quickly in terms of support and the way in which organisations are not only setting up their environments but having them managed,” Crage said.

“That's not just with respect to the movement to cloud but also IT security. We see it as providing a lot of growth and, from our perspective, we feel as though the last couple of years has demonstrated to us that we have a model and a methodology that has delivered good results.

“What we would like to try and do is extend the brand from Perth to a national footprint and try and implement some of the things that we've had success with into other businesses in other geographies and see if we can achieve similar success there,” he added.

That’s not to say that TechBrain will forgo its Western Australian roots; the plan is to have capital city locations in each of the states they service.

Partnering up

The very first partner TechBrain aligned itself with was Microsoft, which occurred during its first year of operation.

“We've started developing partnerships right from the very start. As new products and new technologies have emerged, we've sought to partner ourselves with those that we felt are relevant and suitable for what our customers need,” Crage said.

Read more on the next page...

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