VivaNET float shows some inSITE

Internet infrastructure service provider (IISP) VivaNET has announced plans to list on the Australian Stock Exchange later this year in a $5 million float.

The company is offering 25 million shares at 20 cents each. VivaNET intends to use the $5 million capital to speed sales growth, particularly for its "branded" ISP (BISP) solution, InSITE.

The product allows companies to brand their own identity on VivaNET IT services, which include port rental, data feeds and private networks.

VivaNET's CEO, Cardy Chung, said Australia would emulate recent US growth trends in the internet outsourcing market, saying Australia was only 12 to 18 months behind the US. "Australia and the US are two very similar markets in terms of market maturity (fostered by deregulation), internet usage and the demographics of internet users," he said.

Deregulation would also encourage a wave of new entrants to enter the IISP space, Chung predicted.

Australia was experiencing wholesale IISP market growth with branded ISP clients from the banking, finance, airline, education and sports industries forming strategic alliances with ISPs, and indirectly with IISPs, to offer users subsidised internet access, Chung said.

"Wholesale markets will shape up as the lead market," Chung believes, of which VivaNET intends to capture a 30 per cent share by floating, he said.

"Players don't want to run the network -- just their users. You don't own (potential) online customers unless you have a website and a strategic e-commerce plan."

VivaNET will partner with a consortium of Australian private schools this year to create BISPs. Chung was reluctant to name the schools involved or the value of the partnerships.

VivaNET's ambitions to float were also spurred by profit expectations for this calendar year. Chung estimates profits will hit $500,000 by December, with total revenue estimated at $12 million.

The share offer is due to open in August. VivaNET will list on the ASX soon afterwards (ASX code: VNT).

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