Internet service provider (ISP) consolidation has been an unavoidable trend in Australia (just look at iiNet buying Internode). It's not particularly surprising that Adelaide-based Adam has succumbed to the trend. It's not even very surprising that Telstra was the buyer (TPG and iiNet would have been the other obvious options). What is unexpected is that Telstra isn't going to simply merge Adam's customers into its own operations.
Picture via Google Maps
Confirming the purchase, which has been rumoured over the last week, Telstra has said it is planning to retain the Adam brand and deploy it nationwide. Adam's current incarnation has concentrated heavily on servicing South Australian customers, a strategy which has seen it go head-to-head with Internode. (Underlining that rivalry, Internode quickly announced today that it was offering three months free access and free setup to South Australian customers who sign up for contracts, a move that seems designed to grab any Adam customers unhappy with being associated with Telstra.)
Rather than staying regional, Telstra says it wants to pursue the self-service aspect of Adam's operations:
It's a great online, low cost business that lets customers purchase and manage their own services. This model offers opportunities for growth, particularly for consumers wanting online sales and support. Customers trust the Adam brand and we'll certainly be keeping it as we work towards further growth under Adam's first class management team.
If that results in cheaper broadband deals, that's a good thing. Given that talking to Telstra customer service is about as pleasant and productive as having your pubic hair gnawed off by a goat, a self-service system would be a better option for many people, I suspect.