Talent the key to defence growth as Insitec announces major recruitment acquisition

Australia’s defence ICT market leader Insitec has signed a $26.5 million deal adding technology recruitment specialists The Network to its growing corporate stable.

The arrangement kicks off Insitec’s 21st anniversary year and is key to ensuring a steady supply of skilled talent to support the company’s growth as one of the main software and systems providers to the Australian Department of Defence.

Insitec Founder and Managing Director Michael Branch said acquiring The Network would significantly strengthen Australia’s sovereign defence capability giving local ICT professionals the opportunity to build skill and experience on leading edge defence projects and discouraging the talent drain overseas.

“This acquisition gives us a platform to meet the needs of the Australian Defence Force and makes it possible for us to bring new talent into the defence sector,” Mr Branch said.

“Over the next five years, we anticipate an extra 1000 plus people will be needed to support the ICT needs of the Australian Defence Force.

“Rather than stripping one project to support another, The Network give us access to skilled people who are currently inside and outside of the sector and, in turn, we give them access to dynamic new career opportunities in the Defence sector.

“Insitec has worked closely with the Australian Defence Force for more than two decades so we deeply understand the pressures on the sector. As an Australian owned and operated company, and trusted partner of the ADF, we are proud to be helping to build Australia’s strategic and tactical advantage.”

The Network acquisition closely follows renewal of Insitec’s $43.5 million contract as technical and professional services provider to the Department of Defence’s Chief Information Officer Group (CIOG) Service Management Branch (SMB).

It also marks the first Australian investment for private credit firm Muzinich & Co, having recently raised their first Asia Pacific focused private credit strategy with Insitec being advised by Sydney-based VCF Capital Partners on both the financing and acquisition of The Network. Founded in New York in 1988, Muzinich specialises in public and private corporate credit with US$37bn (as of 31 May 2022) in fixed income credit assets under management.

Head of Asia-Pacific Private Debt for Muzinich Andrew Tan and Managing Director (Australia) Denis Rayel said they were attracted to Insitec as a well-established, highly reputable service provider that was well placed to succeed in the context of the push for Australian sovereign capability. The opportunity to partner with The Network is synergistic and complementary to Insitec’s core operations.

The Network is a multi-award winning recruitment agency that specialises in sourcing hard-to-reach talent to work with emerging technologies across digital, software & application development, cloud, IT security and data & analytics. Founded in 2013, the agency employs 20 staff from offices in Sydney and Canberra, with more than 100 IT professionals under contract, many of whom have top level government security clearance.

The Network’s Director Martin Sharman said the company would continue to operate under The Network brand and was committed to supporting its existing clients and consultants.

“Our focus has always been to connect the right people, with the right opportunity at the right time, and our relationship with Insitec creates an exciting opportunity for us to extend further into the Defence sector,” he said.

“Insitec has the reputation, industry relationships and capital backing to enable us to grow and achieve our full potential as a specialist recruiter for the high-worth technology sector.

“The companies are closely aligned in values and approach, so we are very positive about the future together.”

The Network’s Founder and outgoing CEO Gary Hinksman said he was excited for the future of the combined business.

“It’s not often the case that there is a true win-win for everyone involved in an acquisition. Knowing the capability and values of The Network intimately, and the growth trajectory of Insitec, there’s only one outcome for the combined business — success,” he said.

“The increasing demand for great technology skills in Australia is one of the biggest challenges facing our economy and our national security.

“The Network has spent many years building a community of onshore technology people, and we are delighted to be able to funnel this talent into Insitec’s vision of creating sustainable sovereign capability.”      

The Network was advised by Origin Corporate Finance, based in Sydney.

About Insitec

One of Australia’s leading technology companies, Insitec has partnered with government, industry and Defence on high performance, leading edge digital systems for 20+ years. Insitec provides technologies solutions at large scale for some of the nation’s most challenging and complex environments – continually advancing Australia’s sovereignty goals. Insitec’s experience with classified information and communications systems for the battlefield gives it the edge when it comes to intelligent business systems for corporate and government enterprises 

MEDIA NOTE – For further information or to interview the Insitec team, contact Deanna Nott of Wings Public Relations on 0422 504540 or email deanna@wingspr.com.au

The Network’s Founder and outgoing CEO Gary Hinksman  (left) and Insitec Founder and Managing Director Michael Branch (right)