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Commander Kaput – how are your phones?

By johnboy - 11 August 2008 9

TradingMarkets.com report that Commander went belly-up on Friday and there are fears for public service phone systems here in Canberra.

    The major disruption from Commander Communications’ failure has hit many government departments and has cast doubt on the company’s employee entitlements. Administrators have advised that Commander will continue to trade as normal, but the collapse adds weight to the argument presented by multinational outsourcing corporations that smaller outsourcers present a high risk and uncertainty.

Sounds like they’re actually still hard at work, but will this make it harder for the smaller service providers to get those juicy contracts?

And did anyone honestly think they’d survive once they lost their Telstra partnership?

UPDATED: Thanks to Deano for pointing out that Commander own iBurst which quite a lot of Canberrans use for the wireless internet.

What’s Your opinion?


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9 Responses to
Commander Kaput – how are your phones?
lemaChet 5:58 pm 11 Aug 08

my SIL got out of volante very recently.. her and her partner saw this writing on the wall as far back as when commander bought volante..

mamduhabib 3:01 pm 11 Aug 08

Most of the former Group 8 contracts held by Vol/CDR are up for renewal this year except for EOS who just resigned with CDR a few weeks ago. I’m guessing most of the agencies involved have backup plans to hire their entire support staff on contract should the worst occur.

mamduhabib 2:58 pm 11 Aug 08

johnboy said :

mamduhabib said :

iBurst/Chilli etc was sold off by Commander at the beginning of the year as part of their restructure to pay back the 300 million they borrowed to buy local outsourcer Volante. The only parts of commander still operating are the Volante accounts (DAFF, DEH, CASA etc) and a few very small interstate interests.

Not according to this article from just two weeks ago.

Still looking for a buyer then.

Sorry, I was thinking of Nexon which they sold back to the original owners.

peterh 2:15 pm 11 Aug 08

mamduhabib said :

iBurst/Chilli etc was sold off by Commander at the beginning of the year as part of their restructure to pay back the 300 million they borrowed to buy local outsourcer Volante. The only parts of commander still operating are the Volante accounts (DAFF, DEH, CASA etc) and a few very small interstate interests.

Telstra really had nothing to do with the situation as both businesses prior to merger were both profitable. The problem came last financial year where poor accounting was responsible for a loss reported to the ASX and a pummelling of the share price as a result.

Many staff saw the writing on the wall last December and resigned. This is the outcome of a very poor corporate transition.

many other staff, didn’t see the writing and were retrenched from commander proper. Volante staff are still there, but I hope for their sakes that there is a buyer that keeps them, or a headhunter that can find them employment quickly when they go on the market.

the staff that were retrenched have scattered to several resellers in town, but most ended up at Datacom. They will be trying to gain the old clients, as will all the other resellers here as well.

One of the losers from a local perspective is the Fed Govt, who will have to look at re-tendering to fill the contract voids, once any finality is known about this once great company.

It is a shame that this has happened, and i, for one, feel sorry for the families of the staff still working within the commander banner, who don’t know what the future is to hold.

perhaps one of the large integrators will purchase the remnants, and the staff will not have to suffer too long a wait for their next paycheck.

johnboy 2:01 pm 11 Aug 08

mamduhabib said :

iBurst/Chilli etc was sold off by Commander at the beginning of the year as part of their restructure to pay back the 300 million they borrowed to buy local outsourcer Volante. The only parts of commander still operating are the Volante accounts (DAFF, DEH, CASA etc) and a few very small interstate interests.

Not according to this article from just two weeks ago.

Still looking for a buyer then.

mamduhabib 1:30 pm 11 Aug 08

iBurst/Chilli etc was sold off by Commander at the beginning of the year as part of their restructure to pay back the 300 million they borrowed to buy local outsourcer Volante. The only parts of commander still operating are the Volante accounts (DAFF, DEH, CASA etc) and a few very small interstate interests.

Telstra really had nothing to do with the situation as both businesses prior to merger were both profitable. The problem came last financial year where poor accounting was responsible for a loss reported to the ASX and a pummelling of the share price as a result.

Many staff saw the writing on the wall last December and resigned. This is the outcome of a very poor corporate transition.

peterh 12:50 pm 11 Aug 08

iBurst seems to be slowly being knocked out by Telstra’s NextG Network. The speeds don’t compare, neither does the coverage. I have noticed a definite swing towards NextG, but then, I have several resellers selling it.

Deano 10:08 am 11 Aug 08

Furthermore, Commander owns the wireless internet provider iBurst which provides service in Canberra. They had been previously trying to sell the business but got little interest.

peterh 10:03 am 11 Aug 08

Please don’t create FUD for this one, the simple fact is that an administrator has been appointed. The Administrator will still allow them to trade until such time as their contracts expire or they are purchased by another organisation. They are not dead and buried, and i am certain that their employees would rather that they were given the chance to exit gracefully into new jobs, after taking care of their clients till the last minute, than be abandoned by commander as the clients desert.

I am hoping that they are purchased by a local company who can utilise their massive network, and allow them to grow into a new and better organisation.

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