Printer vendor Canon is looking to boost its EMEA channel business from 25 to 35 per cent of its overal B2B sales following a partner programme revamp.
James Pittick, director of B2B indirect sales at Canon UK, told CRN that the overhaul of the partner programme - which fuses a number of smaller programmes - comes as part of a "transformation" in the company.
"The channel that we have in the UK and EMEA is quite diverse. Historically, it's been a number of smaller programmes that have evolved with time based on a certain subset of technologies or products that our partners sell. We've gone through a large transformation programme within Canon and we've aligned our propositions to the market based on the subset."
The revamp comes as a direct result of partner feedback from surveys conducted by the vendor and provides a "clearer path" for partners on the programme, said Pittick.
"The new programme provides a framework where through collaborative planning we can together identify new markets or new technologies or applications that partners can benefit from, which we have in the portfolio and which unlocks our expertise to support the partners."
There are four tiers in the relaunched programme for partners: Registered, Silver, Gold and Platinum.
The printer vendor hopes that the new programme will "enhance" relationships with existing partners, while attracting new ones, said Pittick. "Specifically we have a very core base of current technology partners in the print area, and we're looking at how we can attract more IT resellers to sell more of our print and software applications, as well as SIs at enterprise level."
According to analyst Context, Canon was the only print vendor to buck a trend of declining inkjet sales through western European distributors in Q4 of 2017, although it trails HP, Brother and Epson in market share terms, with a four per cent share of the spoils.
Channel sales across Canon's entire B2B organisation represents around 25 per cent of its whole B2B business, with Pittick adding that it hopes to increase this number to 35 per cent over the midterm. He also said that the split is 60/40 of direct versus indirect sales in the UK and Ireland's "core" business area of office print.
"That's not a shift from moving our direct business to a more channel focus. We want to maintain, or even grow, the direct business, we just have a desire and an appetite to grow our channel business faster.
James Kight, managing director of Canon partner Printerland, welcomed the news, saying that Canon plays a big part in the success of its business. "They have a strong line up of product range and its good that they're addressing and trying to improve the partner programme," he said.
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