Time Group has launched a direct attack on PC World's share of the consumer and small to medium sized enterprise (SME) market with its so-called 'multi-tailer' strategy.
The PC manufacturer and supplier has launched TimExtra, an initiative which it claims "offers consumers and SMEs the latest technology at the lowest possible prices".
The initiative will be available in four retail areas: a traditional over-the-counter service in Time's 206 stores across the country; a telephone mail-order operation; a catalogue and over its website.
According to the company, this new multi-route sales channel is "geared towards offering continued savings on a wide range of products at a lower price than our main rival, PC World".
Users of the new service will be eligible for in-store guidance from retail staff, and the company will deliver direct to home or business addresses. Tony Lahert, general manager of TimExtra, said: "This is unique in that it started up purely as an efficient ecommerce operation as part of the Time Group and now has extended into retail areas."
Companies normally move in the opposite direction, he said, but TimExtra can "offer the latest and most popular technology to the customer at lower costs than our competitors".
The initiative has been designed to "fit into both business and home users' lives so that they can have access to life technology in as many retail ways possible", Lahert claimed.
He also said that Time is also planning the launch of a specific business branch, Time Enterprise, which will target "higher-level businesses with 500 or more employees".
But PC World, which also has a specialist business arm, claimed it was not overly concerned. A representative said it is "ensuring prices remain competitive".
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