In this article published on Nov. 28 by Systems Contractor News, Jeff Stoebner, CEO of AVI Systems, shares how the company grew to become the world’s largest audiovisual and unified collaboration systems integrator. In addition, he touches on AVI’s relationship with GPA, supply chain, and what other integrators need to do to evolve and grow.
SCN: How long have you been with this company, and what are your day-to-day responsibilities?
Jeff Stoebner: Next year will be my 30th year full-time with AVI Systems. As CEO, I am responsible for the overall direction of our companies, acquisition and expansion, selection of senior leadership teams, and most importantly staying grounded with our customers.
SCN: AVI Systems | GPA is now at the top of the SCN Top 50 for 2022. How did you do it?
JS: During the worst of the pandemic shutdown, we felt our business would be well-positioned to accelerate and we were right (we just didn’t know when). We had to make difficult decisions to adjust in 2020 and early 2021 but knew the demand for technology would increase at some point. Two things worked in our favor: investing heavily in our global business [GPA] in 2020 and leveraging our wholly-owned Microsoft consultancy [Magenium Solutons]. This positioned us for a wave of global MS Teams deployments. With more than 20,000 Teams rooms deployed since mid-2021, the business took off. This year, our U.S. sales will exceed $400 million (a significant increase from our pre-pandemic sales of around $275 million), and the sales of our global footprint is more than $1 billion.
SCN: How is the GPA different from an industry alliance?
JS: First, it’s not an alliance. The GPA is its own business entity, its own corporation. It has a dedicated CEO and a corporate staff focused exclusively on global delivery. It has a professional board of directors, of which I am the chairman. It’s the only structure of its kind in our industry and allows us to deliver in 50 countries with as little friction as possible. Our customers can source in local country currency, while we provide global program management. Our customers love this.