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Secure storage vendor Apricorn expands into Europe

Secure storage vendor Apricorn has opened its EMEA headquarters and signed three new distribution partners in Europe, with a fourth to follow up soon. Apricorn has been operating in the US for the last 33 years but, after taking on Jon Fielding as EMEA managing director in March, is only now making its European comeback. In the last five months Fielding has signed three distributors: memory and storage specialist Simms International to cover the United Kingdom, Dutch security and storage VAD Secury Products for the Benelux, and security VAD Bedriftssystemer in the Nordics through their offices in Norway and Sweden. A distributor for Germany should be uncovered in a few weeks. "The plan is to have a single distributor within each region at the moment. I want to build this in manageable steps; there are some very obvious key regions to start with. I have no issue trying to appoint distributors in any country, but I will take the key regions first", says Fielding, adding that the business strategy for Europe will take a similar approach to how Apricorn tackled the US "we will not rely on distributors to bring in prospective partners on the firm's behalf but plan to attract partners ourselves. We intend to generate the majority of the opportunities in terms of channel partners ourselves. From a distribution perspective, we just want a distributor to hold stock, but more importantly have the relationship within the broad range of resellers we have in country. I am not so naïve to say we can generate 100% of our own business. We more than welcome the distributors to attract resellers to the company, but we will be looking to generate the majority of our own opportunities."

Apricorn's overall goal is to have five to 10 resellers in each European country depending on the size of the market. Germany will see resellers reaching the higher end of that scale, he said. Apricorn will initially focus on the "key" European markets, which it defines as Benelux, the DACH region, France and the United Kingdom, before heading further afield. Fielding said other European regions such as southern Europe will be tackled in a "second wave" of expansion (source: Channelnomics Europe).

Veracomp manages waiting lines with Q-Better

Poland: value-added broadliner Veracomp has inked a deal with Q-Better, to distribute its Bloom waiting line management tool in healthcare environments.

Imago Scansource distributes Sonus

France: IP video VAD Imago Scansource has expanded its portfolio with the SBC (Session Border Controler) solutions from Sonus. These products will allow Lync resellers to secure the installations of their customers.

A new regional sales manager for Medium

Germany: AV specialist Medium has hired Udo Haupt as sales manager in charge of the Eastern region (Thüringen, Sachsen, Sachsen-Anhalt, Berlin, Brandenburg as well as a part of Niedersachsen). Udo was lately working for Tetra (a robotics, sensor and automation company) as sales director.

Tech Data gives resellers more ways to sell on the move with mobile-optimised site

United Kingdom: broadliner Tech Data is driving efficiency and making it easier for resellers to do business by launching a mobile-optimised version of its InTouch ecommerce site and providing new interactive features that will help them to engage with customers on the spot and deliver an enhanced experience and higher levels of service.

The mobile-optimised site brings the comprehensive access to real-time product information, availability and pricing to resellers' smartphone and tablet screens. It is designed to look and feel like the smartphone apps everyone now uses on a daily basis. It comes with all the core functionality of InTouch, while making the mobile pages friendly and intuitive, so that resellers can use them to interact with customers and open up new opportunities.

A new 'invisible pricing mode' feature allows products to shown on the screen of a smartphone or tablet without displaying the price. And for the first time ever, a limited version of the site (without price or availability) will be visible to everyone. This means it will not be necessary to have a Tech Data account or log-in to see product details, so resellers and customers can get a quick snapshot of products at any time. Resellers can access all the main functions of InTouch on the mobile version, such as product search and information, ordering and tracking. They can also use the desktop and mobile sites in tandem, transferring a shopping basket from a mobile device to a team member in their office to maintain centralised control of purchasing.

Cathi Low, Director SMB at Tech Data, said: "our customers have been asking for a mobile-optimised version of InTouch, and a lot of thought, time and effort has gone into making the site really intuitive and responsive. It will be a really useful tool for all resellers and especially those with field sales teams using smartphones or tablets. New features such as invisible pricing and open access will make it much easier to share information, so resellers can explore the options, interact with customers and address potential opportunities on the spot. It will enhance the experience for everyone, make it easier to do business, and help resellers deliver a better service and do more business."

Tech Data has also made improvements to its desktop website, introducing redesigned product pages and new Category Stores that make it easier and faster to find products. There are Category Stores for Smartphones; Laptops; Tablets; Components; Supplies; Wearables; and CAD. In addition, it has sharpened up navigation for its online Configurators, which provide a convenient way to identify, build, and order everything from simple memory modules to NAS and complete servers. There are 30 of these fully-populated areas now and Tech Data is planning to introduce even more in the coming months, making it easier for customers to build quotes for complex systems and find appropriate and compatible add-ons and accessories quickly. Improvements have also been made to ensure systems run smoothly and that the ordering process is as streamlined and efficient as possible for customers. The enhancements will ensure that Tech Data continues to lead the way in e-commerce online services for the channel, said Low. "InTouch is already the leading website for UK resellers and retailers. It provides our customers with access to the widest range of products and it is constantly updated with promotions and product information, rich data content and specification sheets. InTouch is designed to allow our customers to respond to the needs of end-users instantly, enhance the service they deliver and increase their sales. The new mobile-optimised version and the additional desktop features make it an even more useful and productive tool for them."

Every month, InTouch is used by over 100,000 channel personnel across 5000 resellers. More than 70 percent of SMB business is placed electronically. As well as making it straightforward for them to find products and place orders, InTouch enables resellers to access various options and services, such as bid pricing and pre-configuration. It also provides the capability to review the progress of orders, track delivery, and obtain details such as product serial numbers and copy invoices or other documents. Credit accounts and returns can also be managed through the system. All of these automated processes increase efficiency and help customers reduce the time and costs associated with managing orders and deliveries.

Recent additions

Our directory is updated daily through information sent by vendors and distributors. Here are the latest updates :
Exertis Corepixel AB -  Sweden - Specialist
3D Storm -  France - VAD
AMI Marketing (Pty) Ltd t/a Learning Curve -  South Africa - Specialist
AQM World FZCO -  United Arab Emirates - Specialist
Rare Distribution -  United Arab Emirates - Specialist
Aitek France -  France - Broadliner
Ebertlang Swiss AG -  Switzerland - Specialist
ITANCIA USA Inc. -  United States - Specialist
360Mobile SL -  Spain - Specialist
Smartycom GmbH -  Switzerland - Specialist

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