Time Computers has revealed that it intends to develop a direct business arm with a dedicated sales force to compete with rival high street retailer PC World.
The company told vnunet.com's sister publication Computer Reseller News that it is in a "very good position financially" and is considering making the step into the channel within the next couple of years.
Rival retailer PC World pledged this month to become the UK's number one reseller with a push behind its PC World Business Direct channel business arm.
However, Imtiaz Ahmed, retail and distribution manager at Time, claimed that the company will have an advantage over channel competitors because it does not rely on third-party products.
"Unlike some competitors, that sell only third-party products manufactured abroad, all our hardware is own-brand and made here in the UK," he said. "This allows for easier distribution and will not be affected by component shortages from overseas."
Time also sells packaged software for third-party companies, and will sell this with its own-brand hardware.
The company hit the headlines earlier this month because of its restructuring programme which saw it close 12 stores and relocate a further 10 to "higher foot-fall locations".
Ahmed denied that the potential change of ownership of Time's internet service provider partner, Supanet, would have any adverse effect on business. "Despite rumours in certain publications, Supanet is one of many partners and will not affect our business in the slightest," he said.
Martin Brampton, research director at Bloor Research, believes that retailers like Time will find the channel a "difficult nut to crack. Brands don't work the same way in the corporate market," he explained.
Corporate buyers require good standards of support to deal with issues such as invoicing, dead-on-arrivals and warranty claims in which retailers score "poor to average ratings", he added.
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