FDC bags rights for entire Seagate portfolio

Hard disk drive giant Seagate is poised to announce full details of changes to its EMEA distribution set-up following the successful completion of its acquisition of Maxtor. Regional distributor FDC, which had previously been a Maxtor partner in the Middle East, has confirmed that it will now carry the entire range of Seagate products across the region.

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By  Stuart Wilson Published  September 5, 2006

Hard disk drive giant Seagate is poised to announce full details of changes to its EMEA distribution set-up following the successful completion of its acquisition of Maxtor. Regional distributor FDC, which had previously been a Maxtor partner in the Middle East, has confirmed that it will now carry the entire range of Seagate products across the region. “FDC has now been appointed as a Middle East and North Africa distribution partners for the entire Seagate product portfolio,” confirmed Mohammed Owais, business unit manager for hard disk drives at FDC. “This includes the Maxtor by Seagate line-up of hard disk drives in addition to Seagate products.” “We are looking closely at the market share in each country and identifying markets where we can work to build up Seagate's market share. Seagate's decision to maintain some products under the Maxtor brand was a wise decision. We see significant growth opportunities in markets such as the CIS and Egypt,” he added. “FDC remains committed to Western Digital as well and will continue to justify our commitment to the numbers and projections that we have given them. It is all about increasing FDC’s overall market share and channel breadth, not just switching market share from one vendor to another,” Owais concluded. Full details of Seagate’s EMEA distribution revamp are expected in the next few weeks. Gulfem Cakmakci, senior channel sales manager at Seagate Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa, said: “A full announcement on the EMEA distribution line-up for Seagate will be announced shortly. This will provide details on which distributors hold the rights for specific Seagate product lines and the territories that they cover.” Prior to joining forces with Maxtor, Seagate worked with Asbis, Logicom and Mindware as its regional distribution partners in the Middle East. Like Maxtor it also had agreements in place with both eSys and Tech Data as well. Over in Africa, Seagate was working with Storgate in South Africa. In terms of routes-to-market, Maxtor was using both Tech Data and eSys as global distribution partners and had also signed up FDC and Almasa as regional distribution partners in the Middle East. Delta had been brought on board as a retail-focused distributor for the UAE, with Jarir taking on a similar role in Saudi Arabia. Over in Egypt, MAS had been pushing both internal and external drives for Maxtor and Sahara’s operation in South Africa was doing the same across the African continent. At the time that the Seagate-Maxtor deal was announced the real potential for channel conflict appeared to lie in the regional distributor category where Seagate partners Asbis, Mindware and Logicom lined up against Maxtor’s dream team of Almasa and FDC. Even for distributors such as Tech Data and eSys, the merger raised issues about the levels of credit that the enlarged Seagate entity will extend. It remains doubtful that the single credit line on offer from the newly enlarged Seagate will match the combined amount these distributors were receiving when working with both Seagate and Maxtor as separate entities. Seagate has announced that it will retain the Maxtor brand, using it to promote a range of value-conscious hard disk drives. Whether or not the other previously Maxtor-only Middle East distributors will be granted rights to now sell the entire Seagate portfolio remains to be seen. If they are, it could potentially boost the number of regional distribution partners that carry the Seagate product portfolio in the Middle East to a whopping seven: eSys, Tech Data, Almasa, FDC, Mindware, Logicom and Asbis.

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