Samsung targets corporate reseller channel

Samsung has made corporate reseller recruitment a top priority for 2005 as the vendor looks to expand the channel-to-market for its printing products across the Middle East and Africa.

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By  Stuart Wilson Published  May 21, 2005

Samsung has made corporate reseller recruitment a top priority for 2005 as the vendor looks to expand the channel-to-market for its printing products across the entire Middle East and Africa (MEA) region. Samsung is convinced that a combination of high-quality technology and compelling margins will enable it to grab significant channel mindshare. Stuart Kang, senior regional manager for Samsung’s printer business in MEA, explained: “Across MEA we classify several ‘A’ territories such as South Africa, Turkey and the UAE. In these countries we have worked hard to get the products stocked in major retailers to increase the brand awareness of Samsung as a printer vendor. In the UAE you can now find Samsung printers and MFPs in Carrefour and Plug-Ins outlets. The second stage of growth for us is now in the corporate market.” Samsung has identified the top ten corporate resellers in each major market in MEA and is now in the process of contacting them to explain the benefits of selling Samsung printers and positioning the products in the competitive landscape. “We explain the sales points against major rivals such as HP,” added Kang. “We explain the benefit and incentive programmes and give them the worldwide background on Samsung’s printer business.” “We are also conducting in-depth sales training for the top ten resellers. Many of these companies have relied on selling HP for a long time and are very loyal to HP. We need to change their mindset from HP to Samsung and to do this we need to transfer skills and knowledge to them,” he added. Samsung already sells more than two million printers a year worldwide and provides contract assembly services to other manufacturers such as Epson and Lexmark. Kang contends that both the volume produced and the OEM relationships that Samsung has in place are evidence of the quality of the products. As well as technical excellence, Samsung also intends to pull out all the stops to promote its margin proposition to the regional channel. “Because so many companies are selling HP printers, these tend to be a sector where profitability is very low for the channel. Samsung is committed to giving more margin. If you sell a Samsung printer you can enjoy a higher margin that with HP. This is part of our strategy and many companies are looking for a strong alternative vendor to offer in the printer space,” added Kang. To exert control over margins, Samsung is committed to a limited distribution model during the next few years in MEA. “Some vendors have three or four broadline distributors per country and because of the competition this creates they are not able to enjoy the full margin. We will give in-country distribution partners some exclusivity and this makes them very committed to developing the brand.” Samsung plans to extend its product portfolio during 2005 with a 35 pages per minute (ppm) monolaser printer and a compact colour laser printer slated for launch. Samsung plans to support its channel development efforts with an extensive marketing campaign to increase end-user awareness of its printer offerings.

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