Bluechip Infotech bets on data centre, ups profit by 73%

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Bluechip Infotech bets on data centre, ups profit by 73%
Johnson Hsiung

IT distributor Bluechip Infotech has reported a $320,000 profit in a self-confessed "tough year" in 2015, for an increase of 73 percent from the previous year.

Revenue was up 7 percent to hit $81.5 million for the 2015 financial year ending 31 December. The distie had raked in $75.9 million in 2014.

The distributor alluded to the collapse of Altech as a sign of the challenges facing the industry.

“It was a tough year in IT distribution as we saw a distributor similar to our size [fall] into administration in 2015,"  the company stated in its annual report. "Despite this, we managed to grow both our revenue and profit in this challenging economy."

Bluechip Infotech managing director Johnson Hsiung told CRN that Bluechip resisted the same forces that brought down Altech as his company had already started to move away from the PC components business.

Bluechip first moved into the software distribution business in 2014 by merging with Track It Online. 

The distie then recruited a raft of new vendors in 2015 to bolster the software arm: Aten, Alcatel-Lucent, Netwrix and AcceleriteSophos was also added earlier this year.

Data centre and security investments

Bluechip made headlines in July last year when it acquired the distribution rights for security vendor Cyberoam from rival distributor MPA Systems. The buyout gave Bluechip over 300 new partners at the cost of approximately $300,000, CRN understands.

“The acquisition has been very successful after one year, we managed to integrate the overall business and will double up the business this year,” said Hsiung.

He added that he was in discussions with new vendors, but Bluechip would strengthen its sales and infrastructure before moving forward.

Bluechip also invested half-a-million dollars in Perth data centre provider Pier DC.

Hsiung remained tight-lipped on the investment, but said: “It gives us a better understanding of a Tier-III data centres, and it can benefit us and our channel partners in the long run.”

Bluechip hasn’t completely moved away from hardware yet. The company said it saw double-digit growth in demand for enterprise wi-fi, as well as end-point security.

Hsiung said finding good business development managers is always the biggest challenge for Bluechip. “As a smaller distributor, we have to find our niche position in the market and we can’t compete with vendors in offering big packages to staff.”

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