You may not have heard of Montreal-based SINC, which was named Newcomer of the Year for cracking the Top 75 solution providers list for the first time.
In part that’s because the company hasn’t had a big profile outside Quebec, and its in part due to recent circumstances: Its French parent,
Brime Technologies, is attempting to merge with a large European engineering firm so its Canadian executives were reluctant to be interviewed, said Vijay Thomas, a senior consultant and head of SINC’s Toronto office who was delegated to speak for the company.
SINC (which in English stands for Solutions and Integration of New Concepts) was created as a networking specialist in 1997 by Denise Ambroise and two partners (neither of whom is with the company now).
Soon after it became a Brime subsidiary, which financed expansion into other areas of IT. For example, it has developed SINCMon, a network management application, and has broadened into turnkey IP telephony solutions and Web hosting.
In 2001 it bought Logisil, an IBM Premier partner which develops software tailored for the insurance industry. Last year SINC company opened Canada’s first WebSphere Innovation Centre as well as a Quebec City office.
This year the company became a Cisco Gold partner (after being presented by the vendor with the best solutions services award for Eastern Canada) and opened the Toronto office. The three offices combined employ 150 people. While there are only four now in Toronto, Thomas said he hopes it will jump to 20 by the end of next year.
In addition to money, the Brime relationship has other advantages, Thomas said: It helps expand operations around the world by backing employees who want to open offices in other cities.
According to Thomas, customers are some of the biggest names in business, including teaming with IBM to enable Wal-Mart suppliers connect their systems to the giant retailer. Other customers the new office has snared include Sony of Canada, Canon Canada and Alcan, he said.
“”Our focus now is more verticals such as retail, distribution and manufacturing. We’re now trying to move from a company that did integration to building expertise in special areas.””
“”We’re trying to be a one-stop solution provider — we not only ship boxes, we do consulting, too.””
He attributed SINC’s good performance in 2003 to the company’s style. “”Even when the going was not good we invested in training,”” he said. But it still is competitive.
“”We have a small company costs structure that enables us to be very nimble. So we can do things bigger guys do cheaper.””