Reseller Printerland is eyeing the potential for expansion in South Africa after forging business contacts with interests in the country.
James Kight, managing director of Printerland, said the reseller had not sought to build an overseas operation, but that it plans to strike while the iron is hot.
“We are just investigating at the moment,” he said. “But we have all the distribution network there and our manufacturers are there, with a lot run out of the UK as well. And it is an emerging market.”
Kight said the nation is about to see an expansion of internet enablement similar to what the UK saw 10 years ago.
“It is early days, but I was there last month and I have been there a few times looking at the distribution networks,” said Kight. “People did not have the same buying habits as they do here, but that will change.”
Rising internet adoption by business and in sectors such as education meant South Africa is on the verge of experiencing demand for managed solutions, for example.
Because South Africa is not as far ahead in print solution adoption as the UK, it represents an opportunity for Printerland to get in at the beginning, winning a coveted early-mover advantage.
“I have been there myself about six times,” said Kight.
Printerland and vendor partners such as Oki also sponsor rugby, a high-profile sport for South Africa.
Oki is active in the country, and Printerland is exploring its options
via local reseller Printacom.
“A lot of companies are going into South Africa. The economy is growing and the infrastructure, including airports, is being developed,” said Kight.
Edna Molewa, premier for South Africa’s north-west province, said in a February address that the province equipped 314 schools with internet access between 2005 and 2008.
Also some 252 basic adult education training centres have now been opened in the province as part of a huge national drive for 100 per cent literacy.
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