In an attempt to rid its channel of any remaining confusion, Hewlett Packard (HP) has set a deadline of August to finalise its PartnerOne programme, and will also re-evaluate its distribution channel.
Last year the vendor announced that all of its UK partners faced a review of their businesses as it brought its global channel together under one umbrella following its acquisition of Compaq.
Andy Vickers, channel SMB director at HP, said the vendor is currently in discussions with its 17 distribution partners to reduce the number of warehouses supplying HP kit.
He stressed that there would be no distributor cull, but claimed some distributors had expressed interest in becoming Channel Development Partners (CDPs) rather than Logistics Service Providers under the PartnerOne programme.
"Some distributors would prefer to be stockless and become CDPs for us. We have too many warehouses, and although logistics capability is important, we need channel touch," he said.
According to Vickers, although the details of PartnerOne vary from country to country, each scheme is based on the same set of principles. He said that by August all UK channel partners will revert to a single HP contract instead of two separate contracts.
Training and certification will also be unified and partners will be categorised into Premier, Select or HP Business Partner levels. In addition, Premier and Select partners will be required to provide a quarterly business plan, Vickers added.
Greg Carlow, managing director of VAR Repton, said he was pleased with HP's handling of the merger.
"The HP/Compaq merger has gone a lot smoother than some, and as far as I'm concerned the handling of the channel has been pretty clear and straightforward," he said.
Sue Richards, managing director of HP Centre of Excellence EBM, said: "I don't think people realise just how big these two companies were and the amount of work that has gone into the merger on behalf of the channel.
"Most Centre of Excellence partners have business plans in place and are just waiting for customers to buy products."
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