«

»

Aug 27 2012

Print this Post

Project Collaboration launches 4Projects in Australia

Through an email in early May, I got news from Australia featuring a familiar UK name in construction collaboration technology: 4Projects.

Milton Walters, formerly at Aconex and general manager of TeamBinder at QA Software, has formed his own Melbourne-based company, Project Collaboration, to sell the 4Projects solution in the Australasian market. Colleagues pre-sales director Josh King and sales director Michael Tonov also worked with Milton at QA Software.

In addition to Aconex and Teambinder, the Australian construction collaboration sector also includes ProjectCentre (post) and Leighton Holdings’ imploding Incite (post), and my correspondent asked: “Is there room for a fifth player in the Australian project collaboration industry?

I would add that it’s not just five. McLaren Software (post) is also starting operations in Australia, having appointed Michael Cawsey in December as VP Asia-Pacific [Update – 14 October 2012: Cawsey left Idox/McLaren last month to join Sydney-based Active Navigation], and BIW (now conject) is part of a portfolio of products marketed by Sydney-based Zavanti. Like McLaren, this 4Projects partner will be targeting the booming Australasian energy and natural resources markets as well as construction.

Talking to the Project Collaboration team

projectCollaboration websiteHaving previously exchanged emails with Milton Walters when he first started researching potential UK technology partners, I talked to him in May this year and then chatted via Skype to him, Josh and Michael two weeks ago.

Earlier this year Milton and Josh visited the UK to meet 4Projects and learn more about the company and its application. The UK trip, Milton said, had been vital as it underlined how the 4Projects’ culture and philosophy differed from those of other firms they knew. “The 4Projects executive team, led by Richard Vertigan, is experienced, innovative and has been running a profitable company – these are factors that are important to our target customers in Australia.”

From Josh’s point of view, the 4Projects application also differed from the “mainly project- or silo-focused applications” he knew:

“4Projects fills a gap for businesses which want to manage a portfolio of projects…. It helps companies get a global view of their projects, and the folders-style, hierarchically-based interface is attractive to many users we’ve shown it to.”

Josh also liked the 4Projects workflow engine, and the company’s building information modelling strategy – “while BIM is not a big deal yet in Australia, it’s just a matter of when, not if, and with 4Projects we will be at the forefront of BIM functionality and development.”

As part of a ‘soft launch’ of the business, Project Collaboration has been talking to potential customers, including clients in the mining and natural resources market which is booming in Australia. It is still early days, but Milton said they already had two customers using the 4Projects platform on the Australian east coast. These early successes are allowing them to tailor the 4Projects solutions to the Australasian market, and had also accelerated plans to grow the business (they are currently recruiting – something they hadn’t anticipated doing until early 2013). “Being able to provide a full service – consulting, implementation and support – here in Australia is important, and the calibre of people on our front line is very well regarded,” Michael said.

The 4Projects service to Australian customers will be hosted from the UK for the foreseeable future. “We find people are very comfortable with the whole idea of the cloud,” Josh claimed, “and there has been a lot of surprise at how quick the service is – people see better speed from 4Projects than from some locally based solutions. And we can also stress 4Projects’ ISO27001 accreditation, its built-in redundancy, etc.”

I asked about the competition but Milton didn’t want to talk about other contenders in the Australian SaaS collaboration marketplace: “I’m more excited about the opportunity to grow a new, viable business.” In a year’s time, he hopes the company will have expanded beyond its Melbourne base, talking about offices in two other locations, and perhaps regional customers outside Australia.

4Projects partnership strategy

The establishment of an Australia-based partner to sell, implement and support the 4Projects application (see its news release) is part of the Sunderland, UK-based company’s international strategy to grow partnerships in new regional markets. When I met CEO Richard Vertigan and commercial director Steve Spark earlier this year, they talked about the partnership opportunities for businesses with existing SaaS, AEC or related domain experience. Current partners include:

4Projects is not the only SaaS construction collaboration vendor pursuing such a strategy. Aconex has been pursuing a similar approach with sales, integration and product partners (post), and UK-based rival Asite has various north American partners through the ReproMAX marketing network and the efforts of its distributor SaaS North America.

Permanent link to this article: http://extranetevolution.com/2012/08/project-collaboration-launches-4projects-in-australia/

9 pings

Skip to comment form

  1. TeamBinder selected for $8.5bn Sydney mega-project | Extranet Evolution

    […] pwcom.co.uk ← Project Collaboration launches 4Projects in Australia […]

  2. TransBit Technologies develops RoBOTic Document Control Assistants | Extranet Evolution

    […] gas and other natural resource projects, to 4Projects which is targeting similar work in Australia (post) and the US, and to QA Software (whose QDMS is deployed by one of TransBit’s customers). […]

  3. ProjectCollaboration growing 4Projects in Australia | Extranet Evolution

    […] in May 2012 by former Aconex and Teambinder executive Milton Walters (post), Melbourne-based ProjectCollaboration has won some significant projects in Australia and in […]

  4. 4Projects partner network extends to India | Extranet Evolution

    […] looked at 4Projects international partnering initiative in August 2012 after the company had helped launch Project Collaboration in Australia. It then also had resellers […]

  5. Catching up with Buildingpoint ANZ | Extranet Evolution

    […] identifed a reseller in August 2012, then new owner Viewpoint brought the direct sales […]

  6. Asite launches in South Africa | Extranet Evolution

    […] of RIB Software) opened an office in Johannesburg in early 2012, for example, and 4Projects international partner strategy saw it working with CCS, also in 2012 (though that relationship has since ended – Vaughan […]

  7. Milton Walters joins Textura Australasia | Extranet Evolution

    […] Walters was at Aconex and then general manager of TeamBinder at QA Software, before, in August 2012, establishing a Melbourne-based company, Project Collaboration, to sell the 4Projects SaaS […]

  8. Viewpoint acquires JobPac | Extranet Evolution

    […] first, a reseller arrangement and then direct through Viewpoint, the 4Projects service, branded Viewpoint for Collaboration in […]

  9. 4Projects facing Au$9m reseller claim | Extranet Evolution

    […] and support services to third party clients in Australia for use of 4Projects’ software (27 August 2012 post). This agreement was subsequently amended in June 2013, applying for a further four years […]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>