2020 – a year like no other at Datagate

December 17, 2020

At the start of this year, we thought 2020 was going to be “special” because it marked the start of an exciting new decade for Datagate. While that might still be the case, that particular aspect of 2020 was about to be overshadowed by what unfolded in the coming months with the global Covid-19 pandemic.

2020- A year like no other

For Datagate, being an international business, a major impact of Covid-19 for us was finding that we were restricted from travelling, both locally and internationally, and we were forced to do 100% of our meetings and interactions on-line. All our staff suddenly had to work from home, and we soon found that working from home was actually more productive and efficient than working from a city office. We’ve now decided to stay with the work-from-home model, as it works better for our staff and our business.

The whirlwind that was 2020

Despite all the Covid-19 carnage and disruption around the world, and being forced to work from home and not travel, the Datagate team, along with our partners and clients, managed to achieve a lot.

In January we formalized our new and very successful distribution partnership with SkySwitch – a leading US white-label wholesale VoIP, UCaaS provider for MSPs, who are based in Florida.

In February, prior to the Covid-19 outbreak, we attended what was to be our last in-person conference for a while, the ITExpo in Fort Lauderdale FL, where we met with a number of our partners and clients.

In March the Covid-19 outbreak took hold, and our plans for travelling and industry conferences came to an abrupt halt. At the same time we could see that our MSP clients were becoming even more busy than usual. The world had changed and the demand for VoIP and UCaaS solutions from businesses everywhere was skyrocketing, to enable staff to work from home. Fortunately for us, being a Cloud-based business, we could keep up with this higher level of demand under our new working-from-home configuration.

Our MSP-Telecom industry conferences started announcing that for health & safety reasons, they were “going virtual”, so that meant we became booth-sponsors of Canadian Channel Partners 2020- virtual, Cloud Connections Summit, Channel Partners 2020 Virtual, and ConnectWise‘s IT Nation Connect 2020. We found that virtual conferences were a great option when there are no in-person conferences, but they really are not as good as the real thing for the purpose of connecting with people. We certainly missed all the great MSP & Telecom conferences that we normally attend, and look forward to when they restart.

In addition to SkySwitch, we also signed Datagate distribution deals with OITVoIP of Miami, Florida and Access4 of Australia, so we now have three strong white-label VoIP -UCaaS providers selling Datagate telecom billing solutions to their MSP resellers.

During the year we also formed a number of new integrated-product partnerships – all of whom we consider important to our MSP customer base. These include Avalara and their AvaTax for Communications tax engine, ConnectBooster and their popular payment automation solution, the quoting solution Quoter, payment solutions IPPay, Stripe and Authorize.net and MSP analytics solution, Cognition360.

We produced and participated in MSP-focused webinars with AdavantageIVR (professional voices for phone systems) and Cognition360 (advanced analytics for ConnectWise and Datagate), as well as with ConnectBooster, SkySwitch, OITVoIP and Avalara.

Geographically, we expanded our footprint in 2020 to include Sydney, Australia and London, UK. These added to our existing locations of Jacksonville Florida, Vancouver Canada and Auckland, New Zealand. We’ve also added five new staff to our North American customer services team, to increase capacity to serve our MSP clients.

Further to all the above, we did a lot of great work in collaboration with our established industry partners (in no particular order): ConnectWise, Microsoft, CCH SureTax, Compliance Solutions, GSA/CLA, RTC, Xero, QuickBooks and others,

It’s been quite a year!

Happy New Year! Roll on 2021!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: