Powerlan wins Govt contract

After a rash of acquisitions, Powerlan has confirmed its ability to integrate its various purchases into a moneymaking venture by securing a contract with the Office of the Protective Commissioner (OPC) worth around $1 million.

Under the terms of the agreement, Powerlan will implement its own Portfolio Manager software package into the Office of the Protective Commissioner - a statutory body empowered to manage the affairs and investments of people who would otherwise be unable to do so, Powerlan said in a statement to the ASX last week.

Powerlan beat off tough competition from five other bidders to supply an investment management system and a unit trust registry system for the OPC. Other bidders report- edly included DST International, Thompson Financials and Princeton Financial.

"At the end of the day, I believe the criteria set by the Commissioner's Office was best met by Powerlan," chief financial officer of Powerlan, Chris Voukidis said.

The Portfolio Manager system runs on PCs under Windows 95, 98 and NT and is designed to manage assets across a number of investment categories including equities, fixed interest, cash, money market, futures, options and loans & mortgages, covering both domestic and international markets.

The Powerlan software is the result of the company's acquisition of Commercial Software Services Ltd (CSSL) late last year, and Voukidis claims the contract recognises the growing amount of wholly owned intellectual property the former integrator now has in its stable.

"These things do exist in Powerlan," Voukidis said. "I think a lot of people don't realise how much Powerlan has that isn't necessarily recognised as our core business. Something like this [contract] shows how much success we're having with Powerlan's internal [products]."

As a result of acquisitions, the company now boasts a number of self-branded products such as storage components from former Brisbane-based XSI Data Storage.

The OPC joins Bankers Trust, Alliance Capital, HIH Insurance and Milton Corporation as Portfolio Manager sites, while Powerlan prepares to release the product in New Zealand and Asia. The integrator has further plans to release the product in the US and the UK next year.

The rollout will also see Powerlan offer training and support for the Portfolio Manager system as well as integrating the new system into the OPC's existing applications.

The tender was announced early this year and Voukidis said the contract would be worth around $500,000-$600,000 in licence sales, with the rest being made up of customisation, training and support. Powerlan officials expect to have the system up and running by Q1 next year.

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