Data, ML specialist Intellify to open Melbourne office

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Data, ML specialist Intellify to open Melbourne office
Cam Cairns, Kale Temple, Matt Alamdari and Koorosh Lohrasbi (Intellify)

Sydney-based AI/machine learning and data analytics specialist provider Intellify has announced plans for national expansion, beginning with its new office in Melbourne.

Co-chief executive Kale Temple told CRN that the company has seen incredible growth since it was named in CRN’s Fast 50 last year, more than doubling its headcount from 20 to 45, and seeing a 62 percent growth in revenue.

The decision to expand into Melbourne was fuelled by the company seeing a lot of success with customers in the region, but struggling to meet demand due to the lockdowns enforced to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

“We realised that it [Melbourne] was one of those markets that had huge potential. We used to have a lot of focus on it, however, it was something that we weren't able to do just because of COVID. What we've done recently is hired eight people in that Melbourne office.

“The one piece that we're missing at the moment is a pre-sales principal that sits in Melbourne and we're actually hunting for that role at the moment... Eight people is a point where we're launching an office, so we’re getting a dedicated office space in the next couple of weeks to be able to support the Melbourne based consultants as well.”

But the company isn’t planning to stop there. A recent win of a large tender in Perth, as well as work with other resources companies, means that a Perth office is also on the books.

“We want to be able to start headhunting people in Perth to support that particular customer, the tender customer, and also some of the various resources customers that we have there. The problem is the Perth market is quite tight … From what we've heard, there is a limited ML/AI capability in terms of hiring people in that particular market and so it's gonna take some time and some planning.

“I think the next logical step for us is to be able to launch a Perth office, it's just going to be a question about, how soon do we do that given COVID? But we have a strong desire to do that.”

Temple puts the success of Intellify, and its ability to keep growing and hiring, down to its alignment with AWS, which has supported its ability to attract large enterprise customers and become a trusted advisor for data and machine learning.

“[People in the market] normally find companies of our size working with $100 - $200 million revenue organisations. We’re consistently working in the plus $1 billion space, which, given the risk profile of large enterprises, is pretty uncommon.

“It's very easy for us to win work in that particular space when a trusted partner like Amazon Web Services says, ‘we've got this partner called Intellify that specialise in ML/AI, we think you should have a chat to them’ … when you get that type of referral into the large enterprise, you don't really get much pushback at all.

“How Intellify does it differently is that we actually invest a lot of time working with AWS to identify how their technology can be applied in the most optimal way inside their customers. By focusing on something that’s relevant to the customer, you ultimately have more success in that particular part of the market.”

Temple said the company’s pure focus on data and ML and a balanced work culture continues to attract top engineers from the limited pool in a world of closed borders. 

It is thanks to this ability to attract talent and a booming data and AI/ML market that Temple said he expects the company’s growth to continue apace.

“The reality of where we're going to be this time next year is probably an 80 people headcount. We're just seeing such strong growth in the data and machine learning space in-market.

“A lot of companies realised how manual and how poor the data and reporting was during COVID. They said ‘what's happening in my business during COVID?’ and they couldn't actually get fast enough data about what was happening. 

“I think that the fundamental driver of limited supply and huge demand is not going to be going away until borders realistically open. I see that persisting until at least until the end of next year and so I think our business and this market, in general, is going to be a huge beneficiary – as long as you can hire.”

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