Microsoft and Metrologie were locked in high-level talks this week in an attempt to save the distributor from being axed.
In May, it was revealed that the software giant was considering dropping the distributor from its line-up prior to issuing new contracts on 1 July (PC Dealer, 28 May).
But Microsoft UK seemed to back down from its initial threat after coming under pressure from Metrologie Europe not to terminate the contract. One source said: ?To drop a distributor in one country might jeopardise the relationship in the country where that account is most significant. Metrologie is the biggest distributor in France.?
Another source claimed Microsoft was trying to protect its business with Dixons, which buys solely from Metrologie. Dixons was understood to have complained about the distributor.
Microsoft and Metrologie will hold meetings this week to thrash out a conclusion to the distribution contract. Geoff Wright, Microsoft distribution manager, said: ?Microsoft is taking a long, close look at who is providing the best service, both to the reseller and the retailer.?
Metrologie chairman Robert Mountain said: ?We will continue to be a Microsoft distributor. Whether we will still distribute Microsoft software to Dixons is yet to be resolved. The Metrologie/ Microsoft relationship exists at a number of levels, from local levels up to pan-European. All these relationships will be examined.?
But sources close to Microsoft claimed it would be an ?all or nothing? situation.
Ingram Micro is widely tipped to be the distributor most likely to win the Dixons business, valued at about #50 million.
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