On the Cover
Altech Autopage buys out ATC
Tuesday, 20 March 2012 00:00
Written by Staff Writer
JSE-listed Altech subsidiaries Altech Autopage Cellular and Altech Technology Concepts (ATC) have been integrated as Altech pushes convergence offerings.
ATC offers physical network links, Internet access, managed services and cloud-based services to the
business and consumer markets. Autopage, which has a million customers, on-sells offerings from cellular companies such as MTN, Vodacom and Cell C.
In September last year, Altech hinted at a possible tie-up between the two companies, saying it was looking at how to integrate offerings from the companies.
The entities have synergies that could be combined to offer a converged service, as Autopage is strong in the voice arena, while ATC offers data and Internet service provider solutions, it said at the time.
CEO Craig Venter said at the time that the units would grow closer together and will go to market with a combined voice and data offering. A formal announcement was expected last month. The convergence will result in Autopage owning all of ATC and no jobs have been lost in the process, says the statement.
Autopage MD Boyd Chislett has been appointed CE of the newlymerged organisation, while ATC CEO Wayne de Nobrega will take up a strategic advisory position and will work closely with Chislett and the executive team, says a statement.
“This is a positive move for both Altech Autopage Cellular and Altech Technology Concepts as the new entity is able to leverage off the respective strengths of each and is able to offer customers, in both the business and consumer segments, with a single service provider for a variety of world-class services ranging from voice, to data, to hosting, to cloud computing,” said Chislett.
“This convergence with ATC creates a more diversified portfolio of product offering, and places us on a stronger commercial platform, as well as allowing us to leverage the already growing retail, business and partner distribution channels.”
Altech has an individual-electronic communications network service licence after taking on late communications minister Ivy Matsepe-Casaburri in a lengthy court battle to force government to allow value-added network service providers to build their own networks.
Its win paved the way for more than 400 value-added network services to self-provide through electronic network services licences, instead of on-selling Telkom’s services. Matsepe-Casaburri had doggedly opposed this concept since September 2004.
Altech has spent R35 million on a network for ATC, to ready it to play in the converged space. Autopage and ATC will share the licence and offer converged voice, data and triple-play solutions.
“Leveraging on each other’s infrastructure, new ground will be covered, providing innovative networked information technology services,” said De Nobrega.
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