Not wanting to be one to break with tradition, I thought I would cover the topic of the economic slowdown this week. Again.
Last week I mentioned the mood of the distributors and their determination to weather the storm. This time it is the general IT industry that has been singled out by a recent report from market watcher BDO Stoy Hayward.
According to the market watcher, the Technology, Media and Telecoms (TMT) sector is predicted to buck the trend in the UK in the midst of an escalating number of business failures. This is because firms are still going to invest in smart technology to help them reduce costs and increase efficiency.
However, whether this is the case in the channel itself remains to be seen. Some organisations that work with resellers have claimed that the number of failing VARs has actually gone up this year. But others say there is no difference.
One of the most common questions I am asked by people I meet is what everybody else in the industry is telling me about the credit crunch/slowdown and its impact on the channel so it is still a topic that is very high up on the agenda despite the national press overkill.
In my opinion it is a mixed bag. Everybody talks about consolidation being the buzzword of the channel for 2008, but that is nothing new. Consolidation has been a hot topic for at least the past four years in the channel. Firms have always gone bust, even in boom times, it is just a question of getting the right business model in place.
Personally from my conversations with a number of executives from resellers, distributors and vendors, the best way to sum it up would be ‘cautious optimism’. No one is claiming a record year lies ahead, but they are all confident that they will still be in the black this time next year.
Sara Yirrell is editor of CRN [email protected]
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