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Articles about Smes

Parliament in the clouds

That big UK gov leg up for small biz: SMEs bag just 1-in-10 G-Cloud deals

Small businesses have taken just 10 per cent of government IT contracts available from public-sector shopping catalogue G-Cloud. That's according to a group formed to give Whitehall feedback on actions that could boost SME involvement. The target figure is 25 per cent. Fronted by managed hosting and IaaS provider Memset, the …
Paul Kunert, 14 Aug 2013

Calling all resellers:Cloud, security, SMEs and you

Vendors may have declared that 2012 is the year of the cloud, but it's resellers who have to deal with the fall-out from over hyped expectations and half-baked product strategies. You know what your customers really think of the cloud, and what you need to help them make the switch. So please help us enlighten the vendor …
David Gordon, 18 Jun 2012

'Close to one in three - sorry, one in eight - SMEs are software pirates'

More than one in ten of Blighty's small biz owners admit to being shameless software pirates, the Business Software Alliance reckons. The industry organ arrived at this stat by extrapolating research from Vanson Bourne covering just 250 SMEs, finding that 12 per cent admitted to side-stepping licensing rules. It found that 18 …
Paul Kunert, 10 Apr 2013
McAfee shield

Making SMEs cyber-safe for fun and profit

Big firms stand to lose a lot when their defences are breached. But small companies have their own crown jewels, and stand to lose at least as much as their larger rivals without the resources to fall back on. So, The Register has created the whitepaper The Business of Security in collaboration with McAfee. It looks at what …
Miatta Momoh, 17 Jul 2012

Microsoft dangles carrot at SMEs, eases Windows 8 Enterprise licensing

Microsoft is loosening restrictions for business customers who want the full-fat edition of Windows – the Enterprise Edition. Redmond is making it easier and less expensive for organisations with more than five PCs to get Enterprise Edition under a licensing change from March 1. Windows Enterprise Edition is to be made …
Gavin Clarke, 28 Feb 2014
management procure6

Think your IT department's parochial? Try selling to SMEs

It’s been a few years since I carried a quota, but over the course of my sales career I have signed some pretty substantial and complex deals in the large corporate space. However, it was the time I spent working with IT channel partners selling enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems into smaller businesses that I had to …
Dale Vile, 03 Jun 2013

Why I'm sick of the new 'digital divide' between SMEs and the big boys

Recently I have been spending most of my time with enterprise CIOs and vendors' "product owners"; their dismissiveness of the needs of small and medium-sized businesses has finally got to me. As a rule, talking about the needs of corner cases is boring to the masses, but today I just need to get up on my soapbox and talk a …
Trevor Pott, 12 Jul 2013
channel

UK.gov claims it's giving doubled cash to SMEs ... now 13%

Cabinet Office minister Francis Maude claimed today that the government was "on track" to double the monetary value of business going to small- and medium-sized firms by April this year. “Governments might be able to print money but it is SMEs who make it successful. SMEs are crucial to the future of this country and can save …
Kelly Fiveash, 09 Mar 2012
channel_stock_shelves

Can SMEs score those big gov contracts?

The UK public sector spends £230bn on goods and services a year, roughly 15 per cent of the UK economy and £1 for every £7 spent in Britain. The procurement of these goods and services is a massively complex undertaking, fraught with inefficiency accumulated over successive governments. When the Coalition government was elected …
Michael Keegan, 18 May 2012

Gov cockup on £1bn mega buying framework slams SMEs in wallet

Cost-cutting in the public sector has serious implications for service delivery: just ask the SME IT suppliers counting the expense of bidding for a mega software and services agreement that may now be scrapped. Resellers were invited in June to tender for the Applications Development, Delivery and Support Services (ADDSS) …
Paul Kunert, 02 Nov 2012
The Register breaking news

SMEs get hit harder in a market crisis, say biz profs

SMEs, especially riskier R&D-led ones, get even harder than one would expect by market crises, according to a new analysis by biz professors. "We found that during big market crashes, investors adjust their holdings towards bigger corporate stocks that they perceive as being safer, even after controlling for economic exposures …
Lewis Page, 22 Jun 2011
Columns of coins in the cloud

TV rudeboy and Outsourcery boss Linney joins Gov.UK SME panel

The government has enlisted the boss of an SME yet to win any business via G-Cloud to advise on ways to, er, oil the wheels of commerce for other small traders that have similarly found public sector contract success elusive. Dragons' Den star Piers Linney, joint head at AIM-listed, cloudy infrastructure biz Outsourcery, is the …
Paul Kunert, 29 Jul 2014
Comparison of BlackBerry Passport with rectangular phones

BlackBerry: Toss the server, mate... BES is in the CLOUD now

BlackBerry has given users another reason to throw out their BlackBerry servers – by putting BES10 into the cloud as a hosted service. It's a long-overdue move, allowing existing BlackBerry sites to set up and manage the first-rate MDM and secure communications services offered BlackBerry via the web, rather than maintaining in- …
Andrew Orlowski, 24 Jul 2014
cloud

Sage butters up SMEs in fiscal first half

British software outfit Sage saw a mild upswing in pretax profit and revenue in the first half of its fiscal year as SMEs tentatively splashed some cash. The company's boss Guy Berruyer attributed the gentle rise to an "increase in business confidence for SMEs in the period". Sage reported pre-tax profit was up 5 per cent to £ …
Kelly Fiveash, 04 May 2011

Plusnet wants resellers' SME customers and is willing to pay

Biz broadband and calls provider Plusnet has called on distie DMSL to muster dealers that want to flog its services to SMEs weeks after the latest web wobble. The timing on recruitment could be better for the Sheffield-based ISP following an outage on 4 March that downed services for an hour. Connectivity wholesaler DMSL will …
Paul Kunert, 19 Mar 2014
francis_maude_flames_evil

Gov: Half of new tech spending must be made with SME suppliers

The UK government is trying to accelerate procurement reforms and hit ambitious targets by directing at least half of all new IT spending to small biz suppliers before the next general election. One of the grand aims of the Cabinet Office had been to route 25 per cent of all government IT business through SMEs by the end of …
Paul Kunert, 12 Aug 2013

Crown Representative: SME biz is huge... but I don't have exact figures

The Crown Representative for SMEs is talking big about working with small tech suppliers, but even he can't detail in a transparent way the exact financial benefits of doing so. SME flag-waver Stephen Allott blogged that at the end of October, 20 months since launch, 56 per cent of the £63.46m transacted on CloudStore, a web …
Paul Kunert, 09 Dec 2013

UK.gov's flagship infosec program ISN'T DELIVERING - but all's still well, say auditors

The UK's National Cyber Security Programme is not yet delivering on its much-vaunted economic benefits but is still a worthwhile exercise, according to a report by government auditors. An update by the National Audit Office for Parliament's Public Accounts Committee on the government’s National Cyber Security Programme said that …
John Leyden, 12 Sep 2014
The Register breaking news

Telstra targets SMEs in next cloud push

While some providers are looking to free trials to get businesses, particularly small ones, to try out the cloud, there’s no such pussyfooting around from Telstra: it’s launched a small business cloud service that ranges upwards from $AU200 per month. The Telstra cloud entry level pricing will get you two CPUs, 4 GB of RAM, 100 …
man_inks_deal_channel signs contract services

Small biz isn't finding it any easier to bag govt IT contracts

Smaller businesses are still finding it tough to win government IT contracts, with just six per cent of SMEs reckoning they can more easily sign on the dotted line in the last two years. Fujitsu has said that a survey of 500 SMEs in Blighty found that half of them reckoned there had been no change in their ability to win …
Houses of Parliament in night-time

Give us a digi-Czar and more bureaucrats, begs UK tech-services biz

New policy proposals published by tech services trade group Tech UK (formerly Intellect) today seek to grapple with its members being marginalised by recent Government fads. Many of the proposals are familiar - ring-fencing the science budget, making the hiring of skilled foreign tech workers easier, and urging Government to …
Andrew Orlowski, 16 Sep 2014

Capita to hoover up small pile of SMEs in 2012

Capita is flogging 40 million new ordinary shares in an institutional pacing to fund a "pipeline" of small and medium sized bolt-on biz acquisitions. The group, whose IT Services arm has told 1,000 workers they are at risk of redundancy, is estimated to raise £280m through the rights issue following an "encouraging start to the …
Paul Kunert, 24 Apr 2012
Houses of Parliament at night-time

HM Treasury: Look at our SME-friendly contracts ... that we just gave to a multinational

Her Majesty's Treasury appears to be using smoke and mirror tactics to promote the government's wider SME agenda, after splitting up a major contract into multiple towers but handing the beefiest deal to a huge corporate. The coalition has made great strides to break the oligopoly of tech suppliers that hoovered up business …
Paul Kunert, 08 May 2014
For Sale sign detail

Coalition rejigs gov procurement to give SMEs an in

The government launched a new website this afternoon for contractors looking to win public sector jobs that cost over £10,000. It's hoped that more small businesses will get involved in the procurement process, said Prime Minister David Cameron. Stephen Allot has been tasked with improving dialogue between Whitehall and smaller …
Kelly Fiveash, 11 Feb 2011
flag.Australia

Australia's eMinister has policy-crush on UK's Liam Maxwell

Australia's Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull has offered a little more detail on his plans for electronic delivery of government services and the way Australia will procure the kit required to deliver them. Writing in The Guardian Australia, Turnbull detailed a meeting with Liam Maxwell this week. Neelie Kroes, the …
Simon Sharwood, 20 Jun 2014
g_cloud_uk_gov

Watchdog puts UK gov IT on RED alert. Yes, that's a bad thing

The UK government's "G-Cloud" project is one of more than 20 IT-related government-run projects that have been given a "red" or "amber/red" status by the Major Projects Authority (MPA), a watchdog that oversees government projects. "It is important to note that a red or amber/red rating does not mean a project will be or should …
OUT-LAW.COM, 29 May 2014
Francis Maude

Usual suspects make UK.gov Digital Services supplier list

Some 183 suppliers have bagged a place on a nine-month, £40m public sector framework to bid for digital services project work, with a third of the firms new to government work. A tender was issued by Government Procurement Services in July. It had been looking for a maximum of 999 suppliers to provide software engineering and …
Paul Kunert, 13 Nov 2013
Synology RS3614xs+

SME storage challengers emerge one feature at a time

The storage market is in the middle of an evolution. To what, nobody knows, but a whole lot of people expect to get very rich between now and when we've got it all figured out. The only market that matters to most companies is the enterprise, because that's where the big margins are. One sales junket, lots of terabytes sold. …
Trevor Pott, 12 Feb 2014
management management3

Alternative Networks hauls in heavy duty sales hand

Alternative Networks has turned to former Vodafone UK enterprise channel boss Chris Huggett to reinvigorate stagnating sales. The appointment as group sales director at the London Stock Exchange-listed biz comms provider comes after a disappointing 2013 for investors, when revenue stagnated at £114m and operating profit dipped …
Paul Kunert, 13 Jan 2014

Backup bruiser Barracuda bares teeth, gulps down C2C

BJ Jenkins' Barracuda has made its first acquisitive bite, buying mail archiver and manager C2C for an undisclosed mix of cash and stock. It's part of a comprehensive product revamp called Data Protection Plus. Barracuda is a backup, file sync and share and content/application security business, which went through an IPO in …
Chris Mellor, 09 Sep 2014

Unify to axe 3,800 employees, blames the cloud

Unify, the company formerly known as Siemens Enterprise Communications (SEC), is to ditch half its workforce as it pursues a future based on flogging services and software. The joint venture between Siemens (49 per cent stake) and Gores Group sprang to life as SEC in 2008, but was rebranded last November, and now plans to edge …
Paul Kunert, 04 Jun 2014
globalisation

UK.gov: We really are going to start buying open-source from SMEs

Open source and open standards are the direction for UK government IT, the civil servant leading the government's technology change agenda has said. Liam Maxwell, Cabinet Office director of ICT futures, said Tuesday in London that open source has grown up and it's time to dispel lingering misconceptions about this technology and …
Gavin Clarke, 10 Feb 2012
The Register breaking news

Amazon offers cloud based bulk emailer to SMEs

Amazon is offering a bulk emailer for businesses via its cloud services arm Amazon Web Services. Amazon's Simple Email Service - Amazon SES to its friends - allows you to send up to 2,000 emails a day for free, if they come from another Amazon cloud service. The book and services giant says that messages can be sent for as …
John Oates, 25 Jan 2011

OFT probe: Do small UK firms get fair shake in public sector tenders?

Armed with data provided from suppliers and public sector IT bods, the Office of Fair Trading will now launch a probe into the state of the government tech landscape and whether SMEs are getting a fair share. Back in July, the competition watchdog put out a call for information as bids to discover if competition is alive and …
Paul Kunert, 15 Oct 2013
Parliament House Canberra by Flickr user OzMark17 used under CC Share and Share alike licence

Information Technology Supplier Advocate job abolished

Australia has abolished its Information Technology Supplier Advocate, a Canberra-based role designed to help small biz jump through the hoops of government contracting. The incumbent, Don Easter, finishes work next Monday. The position of Information Technology Supplier Advocate was created in 2010 when, as Labor Senator Kate …
Simon Sharwood, 23 Jun 2014

Do NOT adjust your set, viewers: UK server sales are GROWING

There was some welcome respite for hard pressed server box pedlars during Q1 as private and public sector organisations queued up to spend again, bringing to a close several quarters of declining market revenues. The latest numbers from IDC show the UK generated server sales of $420m (£250.7m) in the first quarter of 2014, up …
Paul Kunert, 02 Jun 2014
Parliament in the clouds

Government dials 999. What service do you require? DIGITAL

Government Procurement Services (GPS) has issued a cross public sector framework tender worth up to £40m over nine months for tech firms that can design, build and run digital services. The framework organiser is looking for a maximum of 999 participants to provide software engineering and ongoing support, system administration …
Paul Kunert, 10 Jul 2013
cloud_accounting2

Strategy-flinging No 10 civil servant Stephen Kelly turns Sage CEO

A top government civil servant is trading control of the nation’s IT for leadership of Sage Group, the giant accounting software firm that turns over £1.32bn a year. Stephen Kelly is stepping down as UK government chief operating officer to become chief executive of the accounting software firm in November. Kelly will succeed …
Gavin Clarke, 06 Aug 2014
Broken CD with wrench

Microsoft waves goodbye to Small Business Server

Small Business Server from Microsoft is "going off the air." With Dell's announcement of unavailability access to the last remaining copies will prove ever more scarce. If you are a managed service provider that specializes in small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) I recommend you shake down your suppliers and build up …
Trevor Pott, 11 Jul 2013
arrow pointing up

SMEs, tech vendors scrabble for morsels of comfort in CSR

George Osborne left small business lobbyists spluttering today over the lack of an explicit commitment to helping SMEs in the Comprehensive Spending Review. Meanwhile, tech vendors reacted with a flurry of pre-canned statements, mainly claiming that their products and services are just the thing to help hard-pressed public …
Joe Fay, 20 Oct 2010

Tech industry IGNORES customers: 'It's a supplier-driven world'

Tech manufacturers and their third party suppliers have profiteered by ignoring the real demands of SME customers in the pursuit of extra margin, or so says the CEO at a print hardware and services biz. The, er, revelatory piece of info was announced by Steve Francis, boss at print solutions company Danwood. Francis was …
Paul Kunert, 11 Jul 2014

Alternative Networks swallows Control Circle for £39.4m

AIM-listed biz comms provider Alternative Networks has dug deep for the second time this month and found £39.4m worth of loose change to buy managed hosting and cloudy player Control Circle. This equates to nearly 22 times the £1.8m EBITDA that Control Circle made in the year to 30 September 2013, according to Companies House. …
Paul Kunert, 24 Jan 2014
management strategy2

As Azzurri closes in on CEO successor, sales director splits

South coast integrator Azzurri Communications is going to be a sales director and board member lighter after Craig Wellman handed in his notice to split by the early summer. The business, which last month pushed out the first in a series of cloudy services, is still on the hunt for a CEO to replace outgoing chief Vim Vithaldas …
Paul Kunert, 07 Apr 2014
Parliament in the clouds

Devs SLAM UK.gov's JavaScript-astic, 'shoddy' security education website

A high profile UK government cyber security campaign aimed at changing attitudes to online security has come under criticism for the poor quality of its expensive website. Cyber Streetwise was launched with great fanfare, and much positive comment from the IT security biz, last month. It was part of a campaign led by the Home …
John Leyden, 14 Feb 2014
Container Vessel at Sea

How to sail the stormy seas of international trade

Bono must love Japan. Most of the streets there really do have no name; instead, cities and towns are subdivided into areas, subareas and blocks. Some of those land blocks (known as banchi) aren’t listed linearly but in the order that they were registered with the government. To a westerner, it is a wonder that anything ever …
Robin Birtstone, 14 May 2014
francis_maude_flames_evil

UK.gov: NO MORE tech deals bigger than £100m. Unless we feel like it

Tech titans that grew fat off the public sector purse should take note that IT contracts worth £100m and over are to become a thing of yesteryear - according to the government. This is one of a number of "red lines" that the Cabinet Office published today, in new regulations that are designed to loosen the grip that hefty …
Paul Kunert, 24 Jan 2014
MDS_9148s_vs_Brocade

House of the rising SAN: Cisco plonks physical 16Gbit/s kit on the table

Virtual SANs are all very well but physical SANs aren't going away – what with Cisco building out its 16Gbit/s Fibre Channel (FC) switching gear. Cisco has improved its storage area networking product set, plunging deeper into the 16Gbit/s FC switch space, thinking that physical SANs and networked block-access storage arrays …
Chris Mellor, 01 Aug 2014

London calling: Date set for launch of capital's very own domain name

You'll never Adam and Eve how many people are apparently set to buy a new .london domain name. According to a YouGov survey, more than 200,000 small businesses are preparing to pin their web address to the capital when the new domain launches on 29 April. The date of the launch was finalised today, prompting a flurry of quotes …
Jasper Hamill, 17 Feb 2014
NFC applications

Payment security bods: Nice pay-by-bonk (hint: NO ONE uses it) on iPhone 6, Apple

Apple's confirmation that the iPhone 6 will enable contactless payments via NFC has received a broadly positive reaction from security firms and payment-processing vendors. Apple said it wouldn't access any payment data, so the transaction would take place between a user, bank and retailer. ‪This privacy, along with ease of use …
John Leyden, 10 Sep 2014

HP UK boss sent down ... under (yes, he's going to Australia)

Centuries after some of Britain's less-law-abiding sorts started settling in Australia, the good folk down under are ready to welcome another Pom to their ranks. HP UK and Ireland boss Nick Wilson is set to emigrate. Staff were today told that Wilson is leaving for pastures new and from 1 November will be HP's general manager of …
Paul Kunert, 16 Sep 2013