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Tuesday, 07 September 2021 10:22

DDLS completes $16.6m Auldhouse acquisition, boosts NZ, APAC expansion Featured

By Staff Writer
 Melanie Hobcraft, Auldhouse NZ Managing Director Melanie Hobcraft, Auldhouse NZ Managing Director

Corporate ICT and digital skills training provider DDLS has completed the acquisition of Auldhouse, New Zealand’s largest provider of ICT and digital skills training, in a deal worth A$16.6 million (NZ$17.3M}.

DDLS say the deal will bolster annual student numbers by close to 10,000 and add three campuses in New Zealand to the seven already established across Australia and the Philippines - with customers of both companies benefiting from the relationship, “with an unprecedented range of authorised ICT Training options from the widest selection of global vendors including the likes of Microsoft, AWS, VMware, Cisco and Google”.

DDLS says Auldhouse is New Zealand’s largest and most awarded ICT and digital skills training provider and is a highly regarded brand that has been operating for over 30 years.

“With three campuses in Auckland, Wellington, and Christchurch, Auldhouse has a blue-chip client base of government and corporates including the New Zealand Defence Force, Kainga Ora, Auckland Transport, Spark NZ, ASB and healthAlliance. The business delivers vendor and industry-certified courses as an authorised training partner of Microsoft, AWS, Cisco, VMware, Google and many others.”

DDLS CEO, Jon Lang, said despite the challenges of COVID-19 and lockdowns present in both countries currently, DDLS and Auldhouse have managed to proactively adapt their delivery models to provide critical ICT training via their virtual live online delivery to businesses undergoing rapid digital transformation.

“With organisations rapidly migrating to the cloud, along with the increasing importance placed on cybersecurity, we’re seeing the demand for digital skills are at an all-time high across the ANZ region.

“We are very excited about the opportunities this acquisition will afford our customers across the region with increased digital product offerings, a larger range of course events, a deeper pool of highly experienced and credentialed trainers, and the infrastructure across DDLS and Auldhouse to support continued growth,” Lang said.

DDLS says the move also marked a significant step in its objective of growing internationally into the greater APAC region, adding breadth to its expansion strategy with presence in Australia, Philippines and now New Zealand.

Under the deal, Auldhouse Managing Director Melanie Hobcraft will continue to head operations in New Zealand, reporting to DDLS CEO, Jon Lang.

Hobcraft said DDLS and Auldhouse had very similar cultures and their relationship would open opportunities for businesses operating in both countries.

“Auldhouse has a presence in New Zealand’s three largest cities. There is no other IT training provider that can match our geographic reach, breadth, depth, and regularity of public scheduled courses. We’ll be able to expand this significantly with DDLS vendor and course offerings, including its industry leading cybersecurity training. And with the majority of DDLS courses now offered virtually in Australia, we’ll easily be able to tap into its much larger offering,” Hobcraft said.

DDLS and Auldhouse say their training portfolios are closely aligned and Microsoft training constitutes the largest portion of the companies’ offerings, with courses in ITIL, PRINCE2, VMware, Cisco, AWS and Google amongst those also in high demand.

“Skilling and retraining New Zealanders in digital technologies is critical for our economy, our society and our planet, which is why this announcement is such good news, bringing even more learning opportunities to local people,” said Vanessa Sorenson, Managing Director of Microsoft New Zealand.

“We know skills such as Azure and AI and data analytics are in huge demand at the moment and in fact we need to be working even harder to overcome the skills gap and prepare our workforce for a digital society.

“The digital future won’t be here tomorrow – it’s here now, and collaboration like this is key to Aotearoa remaining a thriving, innovative and sustainable nation for years to come.”

DDLS CEO, Jon Lang, noted that DDLS and Auldhouse have had a long-standing relationship, collaborating on numerous partnership initiatives. 

“Over the years we’ve built a mutual trust, respect and confidence in the business operations and as such we see the business continuing to run as normal, with existing management and shareholders, Melanie Hobcraft, Leigh Richardson and Craig Jones all agreeing to remain in their roles at Auldhouse.”

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