Telephony vendor Alcatel and distributor Azlan are targeting data resellers with voice products - months after several rival firms linked up to do the same thing.
Nortel, BT, Avaya and Mitel all signed up with data distributors last year, while Ericsson rejigged its UK channel. A number of smaller IP telephony (IPT) vendors also began to target data resellers.
Alan Reeve, Azlan's European business development manager for voice, said: "The difference is in the mix of what we offer the reseller."
He added that Azlan has built what it is doing in the UK on 18 months' experience of selling voice to data resellers in Holland, Italy and Germany.
The distributor, which is part of Tech Data, will run an education and marketing campaign off the back of its recent signing of Alcatel for IPT.
The reseller push is also tied to the French telecoms vendor's launch of wireless local area network products.
"We have hired experienced voice sales and technical sales staff," said Reeve. "We are offering pre-configuration and the usual back-office support. Service support is through Redbridge, an accredited service organisation."
Reeve said using Redbridge would enable inexperienced resellers to start selling Alcatel's voice products quickly. Technical staff would not need to go through accreditation.
However, Azlan will encourage resellers to get the full accreditation to qualify for full margin.
Reeve said 20 resellers were currently going through qualification, with about 10 expected to go on to sell Alcatel products.
Earlier this year, Alcatel signed up Azlan, Rocom and MTV to distribute voice products and Norwood Adam to take an advisory role.
Neal Tilley, Alcatel's marketing director for e-business and networking, said: "Norwood is exceptionally good at convergence and at helping resellers to get into the voice market."
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