Resellers and distributors will receive an extra three per cent discount if they pay Apple Computer within seven days under the pan-European Ts&Cs that the vendor is introducing this month.
But dealers also face a three per cent discount penalty if they sell Mac OS clones and not just Apple's own kit.
To level European terms, Apple UK's 90-day price protection policy will be cut to 30 days, although it will operate 60-day price protection for a 12-month grace period. Apple has also renamed its lower tier of direct Apple resellers - business centres - as Apple centres. The higher direct tier resellers remain Apple systems centres.
Apple UK country manager Jon Molyneux admitted the standardised Ts&Cs have had to balance advantages for UK resellers against other European countries. 'We haven't had prompt payment discounts before, but other countries had less price protection,' he said.
One reseller said: 'Only the bigger business and systems centres will be able to afford to pay so promptly without causing a cash flow problem.'
Molyneux agreed, saying: 'That is a valid point but small dealers can gain because they tend to be exclusively Apple, while larger resellers have multiple platforms and cannot.'
He said resellers that have separate companies for Apple sales will qualify for the Apple-only discount. All direct Apple accounts - Apple centres, systems centres, distributors, retailers and the few corporates that Apple supplies directly - qualify for the seven-day payment discount.
PC Dealer revealed that Apple planned changes to standardise its European distributor and reseller contracts three weeks ago.
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