Start-up distributor Hyperchannel has run into its first obstacle after Cisco refused to supply the company with kit, despite having been given the go-ahead from the vendor's European operation.
Hyperchannel had originally approached Cisco three months ago, during the distributor's conception, in an attempt to sell the vendor's PIX Firewall products.
However, Claire Harrison, marketing manager at Hyperchannel, said: 'It was made known we would get support on one side and not on the other, which means we would be supported by Europe.
Harrison conceded: 'Our initial entry into Cisco had been with the European side, but the UK side had been positive to start with.'
Richard Bradley, channel sales director at Cisco, confirmed the vendor had been approached by Hyperchannel about selling kit, but stressed: 'I make the decisions on UK distribution.'
He added: 'I have an original business plan and for specialist internet applications we have distributors that are able to sell across the whole product range.'
However, an industry source said: 'Cisco had committed but the decision had been blocked.'
The source added: 'Hyperchannel was hoping to have sold some of the products but there was resistance at Cisco.'
Graham Howton, distribution account manager at Cisco, denied any decision to take on Hyperchannel had been blocked. 'It did not fit our model and it is a niche player, which we never appoint.'
But Harrison said: 'Looking at the industry, it is all margins and commodities.
Cisco is over distributed.' She added: 'We were talking to two or three vendors at the time and we have since taken on products from Secure Computing which fills in our range.'
Hyperchannel is concentrating on products based around the internet and is supplying kit from Ascend, Secure Computing, IBM, Digital, Wall Data and Intel.
Nick Kandola, Cisco UK marketing director, jumped ship two weeks ago after eight months in the job to join former Azlan colleague Mark Peters at Hyperchannel. The distributor began to trade on 1 April (PC Dealer, 29 April).
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