Telstra takes stake in Panviva for cloud offering boost

Australian cloud-based business process guidance software vendor Panviva is moving to ramp up its product development and expand its global push after receiving minority equity investment from Telstra Ventures.

Telstra's venture capital arm Telstra Ventures has taken a minority equity stake in Australian cloud-based business process guidance software solutions provider Panviva.

The investment is expected to see the Melbourne-headquartered company accelerate its product development and expand its sales and marketing capabilities globally, tapping into emerging market opportunities for its business process guidance software.

Panviva already claims a raft of high-profile clients in Australia, including its latest investor Telstra, along with Foxtel, ANZ, Westpac, and the New South Wales Department of Finance and Services.

However, this latest injection of cash will see the company work to expedite its expansion in North America, where it has an office in Boston and already counts well-known names in the financial sector, as well as other industries, among its customers.

Although the value of the investment has not been disclosed, Panviva CEO Ted Gannan told ZDNet that it was in line with some of Telstra's other investments in its cloud services expansion, and would see the telco take a 27 percent stake in the company when the investment is complete.

Telstra has been known to pump some serious funds into cloud companies, with the telco contributing to a $100 million investment round in cloud storage company Box in December last year.

Gannan said that Telstra's latest cloud investment would be pivotal for Panviva's ongoing product advancements and penetration into new markets.

"Telstra's commitment to Panviva will provide us with the resources needed to grasp the rapidly emerging market opportunities for SupportPoint Cloud in North America and Europe, while complementing Telstra's footprint in Asia-Pacific," said Gannan. "The number, size, and geographic spread of our customers are all growing rapidly, and this investment will enable Panviva to scale both the product and the organisation to meet that challenge.

"Telstra has made some significant investments recently in cloud and mobility companies such as DocuSign, Box, Whispir, and Kony, so we feel that our joining the Telstra family puts Panviva in an exciting growth environment," he said.

Panviva, which also has an office in the UK, moved its hallmark SupportPoint product to the cloud late last year -- a decision driven by customer requests and the competitive advantage offered by being in the cloud.

Gannan indicated that this migration was one of the contributing factors in Telstra's interest in the company, with the telco set to integrate Panviva's SupportPoint offering into its cloud services portfolio -- a move that Gannan hopes will help launch Panviva's presence in the Asian market.

Telstra has been working hard to build out its cloud offering over the past 12 months, after committing AU$800 million over five years for cloud services and launching its global cloud-based unified communications service in partnership with Cisco in August, and plans to host VMware's vCloud Air public cloud platform in Australia from early next year.

Telstra Global Enterprise and Services executive director global solutions Michelle Bendschneider said the investment would contribute to Telstra's strategy of expanding its cloud services offering, and provide solutions to its enterprise and government customers.

"Telstra will also have the ability to provide Panviva solutions to our customers through a reseller agreement," she said. "We believe the addition of Panviva to our cloud and services portfolio will add value for our customers both locally and internationally."