Zendesk hunts for software developers after opening new centre

Australian software developers will gain access to a new Melbourne-based development centre set up by Zendesk, which will serve as a hub for the development of cloud technologies.


Zendesk, a cloud-based customer service software provider, has opened a new development centre in the Melbourne CBD, which will house Australian software developers.


These developers will work in collaboration with colleagues in the United States to further improve the Zendesk offering.


The centre will initially house a team of five, with plans to quadruple in size within a year. Zendesk will also be taking advantage of Australia’s R&D Tax Credit.


Michael Folmer Hansen, Zendesk vice president and managing director for the Asia-Pacific, says Zendesk is already generating positive flow-on effects to the Australian small business sector.


“When we created the sales and support here last year, all our PR functions, accounting and all that kind of stuff was outsourced,” Hansen told StartupSmart.


“In the start-up space, we have lots of deals with incubators – Startmate, York Butter Factory, Inspire9, Fishburners, etc.”


“With the development centre, we’re looking for great developers who can speak multiple languages.”


Victorian Technology Minister Gordon Rich-Phillips said the centre will be a hub for the development of cloud technologies, thus raising the profile of the state’s ICT sector in general.


“Zendesk’s growth in Victoria through the opening of the development centre builds the state’s growing capabilities in the cloud,” Rich-Phillips said in a statement.


According to Gordon-Rich Phillips, the Victorian Government is keen to support the development and growth of “innovative and competitive ICT companies like Zendesk”.


According to Hansen, Zendesk is “thrilled” with the speed at which organisations are implementing the technology.


“For fast-growing businesses, our solution scales quickly and easily,” Hansen says.


“This development centre will enable us to further support our customers locally and incorporate their valuable feedback into future product development.”


The news comes just two weeks after Zendesk announced the completion of a $US60 million funding round, led by Redpoint Ventures.


Other new and existing investors include Index Ventures, GGV Capital, Goldman Sachs, Silicon Valley Bank, Charles River Ventures, Benchmark Capital and Matrix Partners.


At the time of announcement, Zendesk founder and chief executive Mikkel Svane said the new funding will enable the company to become “a globally recognisable brand”.


Since it was formed in 2007, Zendesk has acquired more than 20,000 customers globally. It currently has 1,350 customers in Australia and 350 in New Zealand, including Lonely Planet.


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