Networks First's newly appointed managing director is planning to invest in boosting the third-party services firm's security credentials.
Tom Mulvaney, formerly the firm's finance director, has been promoted to the top job, replacing fellow co-owner Peter Titmus, who steps into a role of chairman after more than a year serving as interim chief. The duo – alongside the company's other co-founder and former sales chief Steve Niven – will all be involved in setting the strategic agenda, Mulvaney told CRN.
"Peter has a fantastic contact network that we can make use of and Steve still has a keen interest in sales and will work in a number of targeted areas," he explained. "My job is to try to get the best from the people – in the first instance the people within our business, but also the best from our partners and customers, by communicating clearly with them what we are capable of.
"My role will certainly be hands on and operational, and Peter and Steve will certainly have a strategic input, but so will I. The three of us have been in discussion for a while to try to work out how we can make best use of the management resources available to the business."
Mulvaney explained that the Redditch-based company, which counts Cisco as its major partner and also works with vendors including Mitel, Avaya and Enterasys, will be looking to deepen its reach into some adjacent areas over the coming year.
"We are in the process of evaluating the whole security arena as we think we can do much more there. Another area that is high on our hitlist is legacy voice," he said.
Just over a year ago the management trio took back the reins of the business and directed its focus back to the provision of third-party services to channel partners. This followed a three-year foray into end-user sales – on the advice of an M&A adviser – which Mulvaney admits "did not work for us".
"The sales and marketing basics, we have already realigned that – all our salespeople are focused on working with our partners," said Mulvaney (pictured right). "In terms of reaping some of the rewards of that, it is a work in progress. We have had a good finish to the [2014 fiscal] year. Our last quarter was very encouraging, and all of that has come through partners."
Networks First closed its FY14 on Monday, and Mulvaney asserted that his plan for the new year is to grow turnover by double digits.
Accounts for the 2013 fiscal year show that sales for the year increased about 5.7 per cent to a little more than £11m. Operating profit stood at a modest £76,464, although net profit came in at £370,038 after a favourable tax impact.
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