Thame-based distributor Transformation and Legato Systems have parted company, following Legato's decision to restructure its channel operation, but confusion has arisen as to which company initiated the dismissal.
Transformation claimed to have dumped Legato, a US-based enterprise storage management software company, because the vendor was set to go direct and the distributor did not relish the idea of competing with its own supply partner.
In a statement to PC Dealer, Andrew Howell, divisional manager at Transformation, claimed the two once had a strong relationship before Legato decided to go direct.
'Transformation has been a victim of its own success. Working closely with our resellers, we have built the market in the UK to such a point of strength that Legato feels able to change the business model. We are concerned that Legato direct is not going to be able to give the support and assistance to users that a distribution channel does,' Howell said.
However, Brian Haynes, UK manager of Legato, revealed it had restructured its distribution channel due to the appointment of a third distributor, Ideal Hardware, and that Transformation knew all along that Legato sold direct.
According to Haynes, Legato informed Azlan and Transformation on 25 February that it only required two distributors, and they were asked to present business plans by 20 March.
'I sat through a 3-hour presentation from Transformation and it was desperate to keep the franchise,' he said. 'We had no intention of going public with this,' he added. 'These things are normally handled under the covers, but they have completely turned this on its head. Azlan was better suited to the market we wanted, as was Ideal.
'We do sell some products direct, but only when it's a global operation.
Transformation lost it because it just didn't understand the market,' countered Haynes.
Legato has a large installed base, with clients including Shell, Compaq and Oracle.
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