SecurityBrief New Zealand - Technology news for CISOs & cybersecurity decision-makers
Story image
Nspire-d purchase brings Advantage to Wellington
Thu, 24th Nov 2022
FYI, this story is more than a year old

With the acquisition of Wellington-based Nspire, Palmerston North headquartered Advantage has staked a firm claim on the government-rich market in the nation’s capital.

Having successfully extended its operations into Auckland in recent years, the latest move brings the managed services and security provider closer to a North-Island-wide presence, while bolstering its access to public sector business in which it already participates.

Nspire is a networking consultancy firm predominantly addressing government and enterprise and has plied its trade since 2006. The sale of the company to Advantage is expected to close at the end of November.

Advantage Managing Director Brad Pearpoint provides a look into the company’s ambitions, saying it is focused on expanding both reach and capabilities. “An acquisition in Wellington made sense as this is where we are targeting next as we continue building the company out into a North Island-wide, then New Zealand-wide complete managed services provider,” he notes.

Pearpoint points out that both Advantage and NSpire are already approved vendors in multiple disciplines on the government marketplace, (which, yes, gets a Māori name of Pae Hokohoko) where the companies jointly offer Infrastructure Support Services,  Information Security Risk Management and Assessment, Information Security Assurance and ICT Security Incident Response, Investigation and Forensics.

Those who recognise Advantage as a specialist in security services are likely to recognise the direction in which the company is now moving. “We’re adding full capabilities across the managed services board, giving our company the scale to meet the diverse needs of clients of any size,” confirms Pearpoint.

Specifically, Nspire’s networking strengths are something of a jewel in Advantage’s growing crown. “Extended capabilities in this space allows engagement with clients rolling out wider projects. We’re positioning ourselves as a single-source provider, bringing the full range of services along with the capacity to meet at scale deployments.”

There’s a further benefit to the slightly different focuses of each organisation: cross selling. Pearpoint says he does anticipate opportunity for the delivery of security solutions within existing Nspire clients, while similarly on-selling Nspire’s networking expertise into the Advantage customer base. “That’s a good synergy and in both cases, clients can expect predictable quality and value.”

Along with adding 15 people to its staff complement, the acquisition puts boots firmly on the ground in Wellington – specifically, in Nspire’s Willeston Street offices – providing a base for Advantage’s Palmerston North-based crew calling on their public sector clients. However, at least in the near-term Pearpoint says both companies will continue operating separately, even as they work together on any joint projects or initiatives. That’s a matter of practicality as much as it is one of ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it: “Nspire is a well-functioning business and there’s no good reason to change things right now,” he confirms.

The New Zealand IT & Managed Services market is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of between 4 and 6% through to 2023, according to Gartner Group. The space has seen some consolidation in the wake of the COVID response, with companies like Advantage and other snapping up smaller competitors as they seek to build scale in a competitive market while vying for scarce talent.