Norcross firm focuses on IT sales

Brian Glahn runs what he calls a one-stop shop for new, used and refurbished IT hardware.

Norcross-based Atlantix Global Systems sells, leases, rents, consigns and trades just about every company’s products, including those from Cisco, Sun, HP, IBM and Dell.

At an 80,000 square-foot warehouse, Atlantix keeps $30 million worth of computers in its inventory for businesses that need equipment in a hurry. The company has 140 employees, including 100 in Norcross.

Q: How do companies that need computers know what if the refurbished equipment is reliable?

A: We run all equipment through out own engineering and refurbishing center. Most of our customers know what they want, as well as the best deals. We are always selling and shipping and refurbishing.

Q: Do you have clients around the world?

A: Yes. More than a dozen languages are spoken in our sales group. We can usually have your equipment anywhere in the world in less than 48 hours. About 25 percent of my business is international, so people speaking many languages are here in Norcross. People come in at different hours to talk to people in different time zones. We can rent or lease equipment and offer aggressive trade-in allowances for excess hardware.

Q: What languages are spoken?

A: Portuguese, Italian, Hindi, Danish, Greek, Urdu, Swedish, Vietnamese French, Spanish, German, Russian, Dutch, Chinese and Japanese.

Q: Would you please tell me more about the company?

A: We have been in business for more than 37 years. We are one of the largest resellers in the world. We stock stuff, so when customers need products we have it.

We also provide on-site configuration and testing of equipment. Our method is simple. We buy in huge quantities from suppliers all over the world, run equipment through our own engineering and testing center, and sell below retail market costs. We teach people how and when to reuse technology or re-purpose it, how to maximize the resale value and how to recycle responsibly.

Q: What’s an example?

A: Envision a Fortune 500 company with a thousand offices throughout the country. They have trouble tracking their assets. They might have millions of dollars in technology in North Dakota that their California office could use for an upgrade. We would show them where the equipment is and how to find the lowest cost logistically to move the equipment.

Also, many organizations have several IT departments. They are responsible for buying for their region and only worry about their region. We can come in and find the inventory they need, where it is, what was paid for it.

We use asset tracking. If I put on a sales hat I would say, “Do you know where your assets are, the part numbers, and could you show me?” About 75 percent of the companies do not have a traceable system for the things they own. When you are talking about 5,000 pieces, the big companies have a difficult time.

Asset recovery is going into a company, taking inventory of their technology, their desks, their cubicles, printers, anything of value. We would resell those products, no matter what they were.

Q: Does your warehouse function as a retail store?

A: It’s not a retail store, but the mass of hardware equipment is pretty amazing. Several of our customers pick up equipment at our facility for emergency parts.

Q: I know you’re a private firm, but can you tell me about revenue?

A: We range from $100 million to $150 million a year. Our goal is to do a million dollars per employee (currently 140) within a 12-month period.

Q: Where does your revenue come from?

A: Mass market products like IBM, Cisco, Dell and a variety of storage manufacturers. More specifically, over 50 percent of our revenues comes from Cisco networking products. About 30 percent from server products and the remaining 20 percent comes from storage, maintenance and asset recovery services.

Q: How did you get in the business?

A: My father, Ted Glahn, was vice president of several technology companies. He introduced me to the technology industry and actually helped me get my interview with Atlantix. He is my mentor in business and in life. I wanted to follow in his footsteps. It’s really that simple.

Q: What is your basic sales pitch?

A: We go into companies, and say, “I can do this project for a million dollars instead of two million. And I can deliver it today.” We get companies up and running the same day. We are here to show you how to save money in this industry without sacrificing quality.

Q: Who owns Atlantix?

A: We are owned by a private equity firm, American Securities.

Q: What if a company needs equipment for a short period of time?

A: We rent you equipment for terms as short as a month.

Q: Where are your sales offices besides Atlanta?

A: St. Paul, Minn.; Irvine, Calif.; Jacksonville, Fla.; Omaha, Neb.; Richmond, Va., San Antonio, Tex.; and Pensacola, Fla.

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