Brother plans Saudi shake-up

Printer vendor Brother is pushing for a bigger share of the Saudi pie and plans to sign more distribution agreements for its peripherals range. With just two distributors currently on board in the Kingdom, Brother is keen to add even more to extend its reach.

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By  Alex Malouf Published  November 24, 2004

Printer vendor Brother is pushing for a bigger share of the Saudi pie and plans to sign more distribution agreements for its peripherals range. With just two distributors currently on board in the Kingdom, Brother is keen to add even more to extend its reach. “We are likely to bring on board more distributors in Saudi as the geography is too large to be handled by just two distributors,” said Ranjit Gurkar, general manager business machines division at Brother International Gulf. “Some of the traditional business models adopted by distributors will not change unless the person who is running the business changes.” “Business was constrained last year due to political issues but the outlook is more optimistic for 2005, especially for the laser printer market which is growing rapidly. We are talking to one organisation who will become an effective distributor from January to work on the corporate printer business,” added Gurkar. As part of its channel changes, Brother is also working on a rebate scheme to keep margins healthy for reseller partners. Penciled in for January 2005 and covering Saudi Arabia and possibly other GCC countries, Gurkar reckons resellers stand to gain a great deal from Brother’s scheme and would receive rebates quickly. “Up front margins just disappear so we want to build in rebates where the margins come in later,” explained Gurkar. “There is no point sacrificing margins to build up a customer base as the end-user has no loyalty. Rebates are worked in through distributors to save time for resellers and ensure they get the money quickly. We will also provide a security blanket by allowing resellers stuck with stock to return unsold product to distributors.”

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