Australia-based DevOps as a managed service provider base2Services is preparing to establish a U.S. office in mid-2017.
Despite being based in Melbourne, Australia, base2Services already has five customers in North America—including media company All Day and online video specialist Sardius Media—that contribute nearly 20 percent of the company’s revenue. Further expansion in the region will require staff in a similar time zone to potential customers, said managing director Arthur Marinis.
“Our service is unique in the fact that everything we do and say is aimed at helping development teams at existing companies, big or small, leverage the cloud and automate. They are the ones with the knowledge of how vital it is to speed up development times and to have the ability to change quickly. Those are the ones searching for DevOps around the world.”
He added, “They have found we are able to provide the right consulting and managed services to help them migrate to the cloud, optimize their cloud infrastructure and implement DevOps processes. They aren’t nervous about our location as they use the cloud, and most are used to working remotely, it helps that we also provide 24/7 support.”
base2Services’ policy of charging a fixed monthly price to development teams to help them build and manage scalable and agile cloud-based solutions presumably helps.
So far, only one potential customer was put off by the idea of working with an Australian company, Marinis said. But, “Our cultures aren’t all that different,” and culture is particularly important for DevOps.
The company often is asked to prove its expertise, in which case its preference is to organize a meeting between its technical staff and their counterparts at the prospective customer. “That solves the issue in most cases,” he said.
Location, Location, Location
Although most of its customers are in California, base2Services currently plans to locate the new office in either Boulder, Colorado; Kansas City, Kansas; or Austin, Texas. Marinis described Kansas City as a high-growth area for DevOps, and said inland areas of the United States offer a good supply of talent at more affordable prices than California. Another benefit of these cities is that their time zones provides a better crossover with eastern Australia.
Indeed, the time difference between the United States and Australia has proved beneficial to North American customers, Marinis said. Australian-based staff can talk to their client’s developers and then work overnight (according to an American clock) and have the results ready when the developers arrive at work the next morning. “It actually helps them move faster.”
It also makes it easy for base2Services to provide out-of-hours support.
All the U.S. staff will be hired locally, with the first appointment expected before Christmas. An experienced member of the Australian team will work in the U.S. office for six months to teach the recruits “the base2 way,” Marinis explained.
He said the company was still focused on Australia and wanted to grow its customer base by 200 percent over the next 12 to 18 months. It focuses on startups and SaaS providers, and there are many more of those in the United States, he observed. In time, base2Service’s U.S. business could be five times the size of its home operation, Marinis predicted, though he added, “We’re very confident that we will remain Australia-based. This is where our hearts are.”