Channel experts have called upon vendors to inject real money intoisa Barnett reports. capturing the SME market instead of passing the buck to resellers and distributors.
Mark Mulford, CEO of Datrontech, said: 'The channel has done a good job of demystifying SME. Who the hell wants to be a box shifter? I need help from vendors who rape me.'
Pete Deane, managing director of Sun reseller Horizon Open Systems, echoed Mulford's views: 'I don't see the vendors passing on SME investment. This is passed onto the channel.'
Mulford also claimed he wanted to see vendors give more soft dollar margins to resellers that actually added value and market making in the sales process. 'As long as it is policed, more money should be given to resellers,' he said.
Both channel players also voiced concerns about the problem retaining staff, once individuals gained accreditation qualifications, which made them a more attractive asset to rival companies.
One reseller, Nitesh Joshi, managing director of Goldhawk, was sceptical about the role that broadline distributors played, hitting back at Mulford's suggestions that resellers should pay distributors on time.
Joshi said: 'We want you to be a value-added distributor. Anyone can put stock codes on boxes and chuck it out.' He admitted the reseller pays half a point more from some distributors to get a better service.
Mulford conceded that the traditional role of the distributor could disappear because of the growing importance of electronic commerce and vendors being better equipped to deliver product.
'Distributors could disappear as the function of the business could be done by vendors. A good value added distributor does go out to visit customers and helps sales,' he said.
Deane added Horizon was coming up against Sun's Professional Service operation, as both parties competed to secure the consultancy business for corporates.
'It effectively takes away our bread and butter. I am totally against it. I have passed on feedback to Sun, but does it take notice? No, it will increase its headcount,' he claimed.
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