Reseller giant Computacenter is really putting some leather on leather in the service contract space at the moment, leading many industry analysts to speculate that the market is slowly starting to pick up.
Last month, the UK's biggest VAR scored a high-profile and impressive win when it was chosen to supply statistical services for this year's rugby Six Nations Championship.
And it is on the verge of kicking a multimillion-pound outsourcing contract through the uprights of the BT Group to supply kit and services for its fleet of desktops. In a statement to Computer Reseller News, the company confirmed that it was in final negotiations with the telco.
This is great news for the channel. After so many months of gloom and uncertainty, caused by the economic slowdown, any sign that IT spend is starting to thaw is encouraging.
The fact that the channel is being employed in key service, support, outsourcing and procurement roles as part of this spend is more welcome.
It is, of course, also great news for Computacenter. It has had a long relationship with the telco and is believed to be BT's biggest IT supplier.
In 1999, Computacenter signed a landmark three-year contract with BT to supply it with desktop products and related services.
However, sceptics are keen to point out the down sides to outsourcing, by raising the issue of whether IT in a corporation is seen as a utility or a competitive advantage. The fact is that, if the deal goes through, it will reinforce the growing trend to cut costs through outsourcing, and underpin the value of the channel as a partner to do this.
A couple of weeks ago Dimension Data won a huge contract with banking giant HSBC. If this trend continues, it will offer service-focused VARs lucrative opportunities.
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