Australia’s tech resellers and their customers are about to get their very own online TV show, with a local reseller gearing up to launch a pilot program dedicated entirely to educating Australia's SMBs on technology.
Managed services provider TechFlare Solutions is preparing to debut a television program covering the local tech scene, including industry trends and most importantly, real-life examples and case studies of how businesses have implemented particular technologies.
The B2B program will span half an hour in three 10 minute segments, with each segment hosted by TechFlare boss Geoff Olds.
Olds will confer with a panel of up to five of Australia’s best IT minds, including subject matter experts as well as general business all-rounders.
Olds and his team will pilot the show for 3 to 6 months, running on a monthly basis with the possibility of moving to fortnightly broadcasts.
It will be funded internally and run using several in-house staff. Accompanying the program will be a podcast.
Olds is aiming for an October / November release date. The program is yet to be officially named but Olds told CRN the working title was “TechFlare TV” - a name which is likely to be ditched later, Olds said.
He said his goal was to provide well-ranged education for the market on what is actually happening to business owners.
“I came up with the idea two years ago because I realised in nearly every meeting with existing and potential clients I was educating them,” he said.
“And I thought, ‘how do we do that in the market?’ You can read articles and newsletters, but how about a half an hour program where you can sit down and relax and hear some real things?
"I don’t feel the SMB space is well served in the education of technology.”
Keeping up with the Joneses
Olds said he would hold the fort as host in the initial stages, but was keen for a Tony Jones/ Q&A- style approach.
“I’m aware of my limitations. I don’t want to hold things back by having myself sitting as the host. I’m happy to be on the panel," he said.
"I’m a keen advocate of shows like Q&A - you want someone in there to hold punches and sift through the bullshit.
“I’m not keen on talking theory, I want us to ask hard questions and give viewers examples of how the technology is working right now.”
The program will initially run online, but Olds has his sights set on the ABC and Fairfax Digital, the latter of which he claims has expressed an interest in the project.
There’s no limit to the topics being debated, with anything related to technology up for discussion. Olds said he will take leads from the audience as to what to feature in each edition.
Olds said around 13 high-profile members of the technology scene had already indicated interest but he declined to name names.
He said initial discussions with vendors had proven fruitful, with all those approached indicating enthusiasm for the project, but declined to provide specifics.
TechFlare was launched by Olds in 2004. It has 30 full time staff alongside over 300 contractors and 250 developers, and offices in Sydney and Canberra. It is also recruiting, aiming to hire six new staff members this year, and a further eight in 2013.
The company last month acquired rival solutions provider Global Technologies Company in an all-equity deal - its third acquisition since its inception.
TechFlare earned a spot in the 2010 CRN Fast50 thanks to a 30 percent jump in revenue to post just over $1.3 million in 2009.