HP Inc has won a deal to become a recommended partner of RM, beating off competition from up to three rival PC makers.
Education specialist RM used to make its own PCs but exited that market in 2013. The firm has since set up its RM Recommends programme, which involves it taking a former and structured tender to market every year to find a suitable partner.
HP was victorious this year, beating up to three other Windows PC makers, which CRN understands to have included Dell and Lenovo.
The new agreement will mean HP is the recommended supplier of PCs for RM's school and college customers.
HP's UK channel boss Neil Sawyer (pictured) explained how the agreement will work.
"Effectively we are the core brand," he said. "For all the core needs of a classroom or a computer room or a school in general, HP would typically be the brand of choice, based on all the testing and certification RM has done. In addition, RM have the ability to sell the complete portfolio based on whatever any school wants."
HP and RM have worked together closely over the last two years, and Sawyer added that the pair are planning big things together in the future - specifically around closing the skills gap.
"We've worked on a few projects in the past," he said. "HP and RM have typically been developing a relationship over the last two years in particular.
"When we look at the exhibitions and marketing that we do, there's a growing interest and understanding. If we work together and speak to new schools, academies and free schools which are being built about our partnerships with those who have purchased RM and RM Recommended technology, those schools get better outcomes. In the world of education, it's not about where a PC is, it's about what is done on that PC. We deliver better learning outcomes for schools and colleges.
"We've got a big agenda over the coming years, which is closing the digital skills gap perceived to be there in the UK market, particularly in the education market. That will genuinely affect jobs and people's livelihoods over the coming years. I know it sounds highbrow as a conversation point, but ultimately technology firms have to take greater control through partnerships."
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