Tekserve Lives Again: Axispoint Buys Legendary Apple Reseller Brand, B2B Subsidiary 
Published on CRN (http://www.crn.com)
by Michael Novinson  on January 11, 2017, 12:30 pm EST
Rising solution provider star Axispoint has purchased the venerable Tekserve Apple reseller brand along with the robust T2 Computing business solutions arm to supercharge Axispoint's hardware and engineering expertise.
Axispoint President and CEO Dan DiSano told CRN exclusively that, as part of the deal, the New York-based solution provider has acquired the right to resurrect the famous Tekserve name, which first gained notoriety in the late 1980s as New York's premier place for Apple service and support.
But the company, No. 193 on the CRN Solution Provider 500, closed its retail location in August due to rising rents, less need to repair Apple devices, and the ubiquity of Apple's own stores. Now, Tekserve's 75-person T2 operation, which was spun off as its own unit in 2014, will begin its next chapter as part of Axispoint, delivering a more well-rounded IT experience to SMB media and entertainment firms.
[RELATED: Longtime Apple Reseller Tekserve Set To Close Store, Will Continue Offering Professional Services ]
"In New York, Tekserve is a very big business," DiSano told CRN. "People know it, respect it. I think eventually, it [the name] could resurface in some way."
Both Axispoint and T2 will be maintained as separate brands for at least the next six months, DiSano said, with the T2 team working out of its own Manhattan office space. At that point, Axispoint will decide whether it wishes to keep two separate brands, rebrand everything under the Axispoint or T2 moniker, or move forward with an entirely new name.
The first acquisition in Axispoint's 15-year history will create a company with annual sales of between $75 million and $100 million and more than 100 employees, including 30 in sales. DiSano said Axispoint and T2 have gotten to know each other over the past two years after partnering on a number of media asset management and rights management projects.
"This will be deeper and more whole than just a partnership," DiSano said. "When you have the resources in house, you can better create new technologies and platforms that you might not have been able to do in a simple partnership."
The deal will drive cross-selling by bringing together Axispoint's software and application development expertise with T2's engineering and hardware operations, DiSano said, particularly around media asset management. Increased scale will also make it easier for Axispoint to get a seat at the table with larger clients, DiSano said.
Specifically, DiSano said T2 clients will be interested in Axispoint's custom enterprise software, web and mobile management and data work, while current Axispoint customers will appreciate T2's ability to design hardware equipment with a software solution in mind. T2 has strong ties with Apple due to the Tekserve legacy, DiSano said, but the company also works with vendors such as Dell EMC and NetApp.
"We have the ability to increase our service line in a client space that allows us to create solutions and products," DiSano said. "There are some unmet needs that we saw."
DiSano said media genres from broadcast to film to music are trying to transform from entertainment companies into data and content companies. As these firms need help with managing video assets, customizing software and building workflows, DiSano said they're increasingly turning to IT companies with expertise in both equipment and applications.
"We touch infrastructure, though we're mainly coming at it from a consulting and software side," DiSano said. "But our clients' clients have changed."
Large enterprises make up the majority of T2's clientele, DiSano said, meaning that the company typically works with larger customers than Axispoint. That's primarily the result of T2's robust production media business, which DiSano said works with major studios around video and storage.
At the same time, both Axispoint and T2 have experience working with very small startups and getting minimal viable products to market within four to six months, DiSano said.
The combined company will be better positioned to partner with manufacturers looking to get into the media space, DiSano said, since it can now design a strategy, provide both services and equipment and jointly go to market. DiSano said the company plans to sit down with strategic players in the near future and map our ways to bring more of its capabilities to bear in the market.
"We're excited about the transaction," DiSano said. "We're excited to become one company, and to go to market in a vertical that's growing and changing."