Cisco identifies regional CADs

Networking giant Cisco has boosted its line-up of Authorised Distributor partners across the Middle East and Africa (MEA) region. Al-Jammaz Telecom, SouthComp Polaris and Marson have all been awarded Cisco Authorised Distributor (CAD) status.

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By  Stuart Wilson Published  October 10, 2004

Networking giant Cisco has boosted its line-up of Authorised Distributor partners across the Middle East and Africa (MEA) region. Al-Jammaz Telecom, SouthComp Polaris and Marson have all been awarded Cisco Authorised Distributor (CAD) status. The move also signifies Cisco’s intention to evolve the MEA channel towards the two-type distribution model employed in other regions around the world such as Western Europe. As part of this model, distributors are classed as either CADs or Cisco Distribution Partners (CDPs). With CDPs holding inventory and specialising in logistics efficiency, Cisco’s theory is that this frees up CADs to focus on reseller relationships, channel development and building new routes-to-market. Cisco’s distribution classification also claims to free up working capital for CADs. As CADs, Al-Jammaz will work in Saudi Arabia, SouthComp Polaris in North Africa and Marsons in Pakistan. “North Africa, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia each have significant populations of entrepreneurs and smaller businesses,” said Haico Meijerink, senior director distribution operations, EMEA at Cisco Systems. “Our new distributors will provide wider coverage and stronger presence in these emerging countries. They will also provide greater support to our network of resellers, enhancing their skills and helping to build and maintain a high-level of customer satisfaction,” he added. “Our CADs have been carefully selected on the basis of many criteria including their reseller support capabilities and credit facilities, core competency in new technologies and geographical reach as well as their ability to integrate into Cisco’s backend systems and processes,” said Jeremy Santiago, distribution manager MENA at Cisco Systems. Patrick Forest, managing director at SouthComp Polaris, said, “Working with Cisco as a CAD will be a continuation of our efforts to develop the Cisco business in Maghreb, including further organization of its distribution channel; increasing the brand market share in Morocco and Algeria, and penetrating the Tunisian market. With the largest number of channel partners in the Maghreb, SouthComp Polaris can use its existing reseller and dealer network to further promote Cisco, with whom we have developed a strong relationship after marketing its solutions for the past two years.” SouthComp Polaris has a strong channel in the Maghreb region serving a reseller base of 750 customers. Al-Jammaz Telecom, established in 1995, is a leading Saudi-based telecom company operating as a distributor in the fields of networking, data and voice communications, wireless mobility and wireless broadband. SouthComp Polaris is actually an affiliated company of MDS Holdings, an international IT group covering Europe, Africa, the Middle East and Central Asia. MDS Holdings’ subsidiaries also include Middle East distributor Mindware. Cisco’s distribution strategy has been through a turbulent period of chopping and changing in the Middle East this year. This latest move, coupled with the recent appointment of Mark De Simone as regional VP, suggests that there is now greater stability in Cisco’s channel.

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