eChannel 15 April 2001

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By  Colin Browne Published  April 14, 2001

Editorial Leader|~||~||~|Dear colleague,

The cosy relationship enjoyed by most computer resellers in the major PC retail areas around the Middle East is rapidly becoming redundant, and I predict great changes in the model of those relationships.

Think of another situation where a retailer caught short on stock will simply go next door to his competitor in order to ensure that the customer doesn't go there himself. By doing this, it enables resellers to be second-rate, yet still stay in business. In short, it doesn't really work for anyone.

But there is a new mood on the streets these days, tantamount to guerrilla warfare when compared to the standards previously set. The name of the new game is: grabbing market share from those who are unable to hold on to it.

It is the only logical key to survival.

The reality is that the industry is healthy and dramatically larger than it was five years ago. But it is maturing, and maturing industries mean smaller, but still healthy, annual growth rates.

They also mean consolidation. There are too many identical businesses for what is ahead of us, and the survivors will be those that prove themselves to be great at guerrilla warfare.

To be specific, there are far too PC assemblers, and far too many of the sort of retailers that stock shelves full of floppy disks, keyboards, and MP3 players. The list goes on, but the point is there will be a continual reduction in the number of suppliers in almost every category over the next few years.

Betting on who the winners will be is going to prove difficult at first. As the pressure mounts, however, the survivors will be easier to spot. They will be those that understand that it is a tactical approach to the market that wins in these types of maturing market economies.

The objective for the survivors has to be to steal share from competitors, not allow them to continue pottering along as if there is no pressure on them to become better.

As ever, you can reach me at: colin.browne@itp.net

Regards,

Colin Browne
Editor - Computer Reseller News Middle East
ITP Middle East
PO Box 61480
Dubai JAFZ
UAE
Tel.: 971 4 282 9996
Fax.: 971 4 282 9599
Email: colin.browne@itp.net
||**||News|~||~||~|50% of consumers use a PC to surf the Web

According to a survey by Intel, surfing the Net is the main use of a PC in the Middle East. The research was carried out during the Dubai Shopping Festival and analysed by Interpro.

The survey results have shown that 52% of participants use their PCs to browse the Web or plan to purchase a PC for that purpose. 45% believe that a PC has the advantage of helping them build their own Web sites and 18% feel it helps them do their shopping from home.

"These results show that Middle East consumers are increasingly adopting new technologies to raise the quality of their lifestyles," said Gilbert Lacroix, Intel’s general manager for the Middle East and North Africa. "As the number of Internet connections in the region will pass the four-million mark shortly, we believe that there is a great potential for electronic commerce here," he added.

Extended PC Era arrives in the ME

Intel has introduced the "Extended PC Era" in the region in order to set the stage for a future in which more consumer products go digital and interconnect with home PCs.

"The PC is at the center of the digital universe and the universe is expanding," said Gilbert Lacroix, Intel Corporation general manager, Middle East and North Africa. "In the Extended PC Era, the combination of powerful and versatile Intel Pentium 4 processor-based PCs and a vast array of digital products will help consumers use their home PCs and the Internet in new, exciting ways," he added.

As digital consumer devices evolve, Lacroix believes that they will migrate toward more of the PC's capabilities and blend into the PC environment, enhancing and extending the home PC.

"In the Extended PC Era, the home PC will be tasked to do even more and consumers will be at the center of their own Internet experiences," said Lacroix.

In Intel's view of the world, the PC will deliver Internet video and audio throughout the home, adding value to digital consumer products that take advantage of its ability to edit, manage, store and share content.

TEKLA expands operations in Middle East

Software company TEKLA is opening a Middle East office in Dubai Internet City to promote its model-based operational software in the region. TEKLA, which produces a range of modelling solutions for the construction and energy sectors, hopes that the office, which is due to open in October, will allow greater co-operation with its existing clients in the region.

"TEKLA's products have already proven successful in Gulf markets, and the opening of the Dubai office will further support both existing customers, as well as newly acquired ones," said Paul McIver, manager for TEKLA Middle East.

Among the company's offerings is the X product family, which includes Xcity for land-use planning for public infrastructure, Xsteel for modelling steel structures, Xpipe for water and sewage pipe modelling and Xpower for energy distribution networks. The X family of products use model-based planning over document-based, and provide a wide range of functions including reporting, material lists, and other integrated functions.

Xsteel is already in use with several clients in the region, including Emirates Buildings Systems, Cleveland Bridge, J Ray McDermott and Zamil Steel. Michael Cross, structural manager of J Ray McDermott explained why his company used Xsteel: "The speed and flexibility of Xsteel has allowed us to increase our productivity and effectiveness within the engineering support office. Direct download of plate, beam and tubular profiling information to CNC machinery has enhanced our detail product planning. We have been able to issue fabrication shop drawings quickly in order to meet the growing demand for track jobs," he said.

Logitech to increase channel support across the region

Logitech resellers in the region can expect increased service and support from the vendor as it promises to open offices in key cities in the region.

In response to growing Middle East sales over the last twelve months, Logitech has appointed Laurent Olagnon as regional director for MMEA to oversee the upcoming expansion plans for the region.

Logitech's key regional distribution partner, ITE Distribution is looking forward to the fresh retail marketing experience that Olagnon brings to the market.

"Laurent's wealth of experience in the European market will be a big asset for us as we sharpen the retail marketing strategy over the coming months," said Kripanand Sreenivas, general manager of ITE. "He has a keen sense for what works," he added.

With years of experience with the company, Olagnon will make the Middle East region a key focus in order to uphold its commitment to the region's channel partners.

"I am looking forward to working with our distribution partner, ITE. The Middle East is a challenging market with a lot of potential for Logitech, and I am certainly up for the challenge!" said Olagnon.

ABM is now Apple's sole KSA partner

Apple has given the green light to Middle East marketing partner Arab Business Machines (ABM) to represent it as its sole partner in Saudi Arabia.

The move finalises the process of extending ABM's role to the entire Middle East, which was announced late last year.

According to ABM's managing director, Jacques Chammas, a major task on hand will be to implement a single price point for the entire region, in line with that on offer in other parts of the world.

Apple's area sales manager for the Middle East, Brice Contassot said that the savings implied in having a single partner for the region will enable Apple to invest more money in marketing activities than it was previously able.

Quantum leaves the hard disk drive business

After over 20 years in the hard disk drive business, Quantum has left it behind and has turned its focus exclusively on its data protection and storage solutions business.

Quantum stockholders approved the merger of the company's hard disk drive business with Maxtor last October, leaving Quantum to take on the likes of EMC in the storage industry.

"As the creation of corporate data continues at an unprecedented rate, enterprise customers are struggling to manage and protect that data under increased budget pressures and with limited internal storage resources," said Michael Brown, chairman and CEO of Quantum.

"This presents an incredible opportunity for us to evolve and grow as a company by harnessing our expertise in data protection to bring to market new scalable, integrated storage solutions and services for complex networked business environments."

With approximately US$1.4 billion in annual sales and about 3000 employees around the globe, Quantum is already established in data protection, with its mid-range tape drives and DLTtape automation systems.

Revenue of over $200 million annually, has allowed it to develop its position as a storage solutions provider, forming alliances with vendors such as Network Appliance, Veritas and Cisco, to offer complete storage networking solutions.

"Becoming more of a storage solutions company is a visionary move for Quantum," said Michael Peterson, president of Strategic Research Corporation.

"Storage solutions is a strong $100 billion growth market with many strategic opportunities for leadership. Quantum is now well positioned in the centre of this industry," he added.
||**||Incentives|~||~||~|Special Discounts from Mentor Systems

Mentor Systems offers 'AUDIT-IT' The Complete Accounting System with SOURCE CODE for Dh. 7,000/- only

Specially Designed for Computer Resellers only, based on the Windows environment.

Modules covered are: Accounts Receivable; Accounts Payable; General Ledger; Inventory Control; Sales Invoicing

For further details, please contact: email:mentor@emirates.net.ae.

Cisco Rewards now on for big prizes
Cisco Systems will reward qualifying resellers with new Audi TTs, Breitling watches, stays at the Burj Al Arab, and other spectacular prizes, for their exceptional sales of Cisco equipment.

To qualify for prizes, resellers must register with Cisco by hitting the link below, and then accumulate points towards these stunning prizes.

A full breakdown of points and values, and all you need to start collecting is on the Web site once you hit the link below.

To enrol in Cisco Rewards, you will require a Cisco Connection Online (CCO) User ID and Password. To obtain this, you need first to be registered as a Cisco reseller.

For further details, click on this link: href="http://www.cisco.com/rewards/emea/how.html">http://www.cisco.com/rewards/emea/how.html

Join Mindware with Microsoft and Xerox for this special promotion
Buy Microsoft Office std. at the current market price of US$410, Mindware will give you a Xerox C8 Inkjet printer at no extra cost. There is a minimum order of 5 units.

Offer is valid while stocks last.

For more information, please contact Rabab Hasan or Anuradha Basu at Mindware Dubai. Tel: (UAE) 971 4 221 9789/224 6240, or email: sales@mindware.co.ae, rabab_hasan@mindware.co.ae, or anuradha_basu@mindware.co.ae

Join Saudi Business Machines for huge savings with IBM
SBM are offering a massive 50% discount on IBM RS/6000 servers: Top-rated Web server, High Density Packaging of Internet and Internet Applications, 64-bit performance and availability to handle your most demanding e-business, ERP, business intelligence and database applications.

For further information, email: Majeds@sa.ibm.com or Tel: (KSA) 966 2 660 007

Mindware and Intel Express Router Promotion
Join Mindware and Intel for excellent pricing on Express 8000 & 9500 routers.

Intel Express 8000 series routers:
Part numbers:
ER8100ST: 1 x 10/100 LAN, 1 x ISDN BRI
ER8100FR: 1 x 10/100 LAN, 1 x WAN serial port
ER8210EU: 1 x 10/100 LAN, 1 x WAN serial port, 1x console port

Intel Express 9500 series routers:
Part numbers:
ER9510ST: 1 x 10/100 LAN, 1 x ISDN BRI, 1 x Serial WAN, 1 x
console/Async
ER9515ST: 1 x 10/100 LAN, 1 x 10 Mbps LAN, 1 x ISDN BRI, 1 x
serial WAN, 1 x console/Async
ER9530EU: 1 x 10/100 LAN, 2 x Serial WAN , 1 x console port/Async
ER9535EU: 1 x 10/100 LAN, 1 x 10 Mbps LAN, 2 x serial WAN, 1 x
console/Async

For more information, email: ayten_polad@mindware.co.ae.

Tech Data & Novell: Small Business Suite 5 Offer
Tech Data and Novell are offering a special pricing on Small Business Suite 5. Small Business Suite 5 - unique market pricing is still available

Server + 5 user ONLY $372 (00662644339047)
Server + 10 user ONLY $533 (00662644339054)
Server + 25 user ONLY $904 (00662644339061)

For further details, visit: http://www.novellmoneymaker.com or Tel: 971 4 3346 952

Novell is also offering FREE Small Biz training. For further information, email: info_mideast@novell.com

Intel Network Interface Adapters pricing deal
Intel is offering IPIs a special pricing deal on Network Interface Adapters. This preferential pricing allows IPIs to buy a 20-pack at the same card unit cost as an 80-pack.

For more details, visit: http://program.intel.com/ipi/en/index.htm

Intel Server rebate offer
Increase your margins on Intel server products with extra rebates on the PRO/100+ Server adapter.

For more details, visit: http://program.intel.com/ipi/en/index.htm

Are you offering any special promotions?
Do you have a special promotion that you want to inform the channel about?

We would be happy to include any incentive programmes or special promotions that you are running each week in eCRN.

For more information - please send full details to Dealer Incentives.

For more information on the Middle East IT Reseller Channel - visit Computer Reseller News Online TODAY.
||**||Training Diary|~||~||~|ARE YOU HOSTING A RESELLER EVENT?
Do you have any events for the industry that you would like to see listed here?

If so please send a message to Events Diary today and we will add the listing in a future edition of eCRN.

Amman

May 28: The Storage Roadshow: with ACN & Network Middle East, Regency Palace Hotel

In the new e-economy storage has emerged as the essential factor for management of any company's information and how it is shared, stored and accessed.

Leading Government/Industry figures will present case studies complemented by the travelling experts at each venue. A mix of speeches, panel discussions, solutions and product displays will ensure that the issues of direct concern to you will be addressed.

Register online for FREE now, visit http://www.itp.net/events/storage

Bahrain

May 30: The Storage Roadshow: with ACN & Network Middle East, Gulf Hotel

In the new e-economy storage has emerged as the essential factor for management of any company's information and how it is shared, stored and accessed.

Leading Government/Industry figures will present case studies complemented by the travelling experts at each venue. A mix of speeches, panel discussions, solutions and product displays will ensure that the issues of direct concern to you will be addressed.

Register online for FREE now, visit http://www.itp.net/events/storage

Cairo

April 30: Sun Microsystems: Introducing Sun Fire Systems, Marriott Hotel.

Sun Microsystems invites you to join them for the Middle East launch of the Sun Fire(tm) midframe servers, the first in a new line of highly available servers that deliver true mainframe-class capability to your network in a mid-range system.

To register online please visit http://www.itp.net/events/sun

May 23: The Storage Roadshow: with ACN & Network Middle East, Sheraton Royal Gardens

In the new e-economy storage has emerged as the essential factor for management of any company's information and how it is shared, stored and accessed.

Leading Government/Industry figures will present case studies complemented by the travelling experts at each venue. A mix of speeches, panel discussions, solutions and product displays will ensure that the issues of direct concern to you will be addressed.

Register online for FREE now, visit http://www.itp.net/events/storage

Dubai

April 26: Veritas VPLUS partner SALES training.

Session will cover "How to Sell VERITAS products" and take partners through new strategies, price list navigation, sample scenarios etc.

For further details, and to register for this event, please contact: david.beck@veritas.com

May 1: Sun Microsystems: Introducing Sun Fire Systems, Crowne Plaza Hotel.

Sun Microsystems invites you to join them for the Middle East launch of the Sun Fire(tm) midframe servers, the first in a new line of highly available servers that deliver true mainframe-class capability to your network in a mid-range system.

To register online please visit http://www.itp.net/events/sun

May 19: The Storage Roadshow: with ACN & Network Middle East, Le Meridien Hotel, Airport Road

In the new e-economy storage has emerged as the essential factor for management of any company's information and how it is shared, stored and accessed.

Leading Government/Industry figures will present case studies complemented by the travelling experts at each venue. A mix of speeches, panel discussions, solutions and product displays will ensure that the issues of direct concern to you will be addressed.

Register online for FREE now, visit http://www.itp.net/events/storage

Kuwait

May 26: The Storage Roadshow: with ACN & Network Middle East, Sheraton Hotel

In the new e-economy storage has emerged as the essential factor for management of any company's information and how it is shared, stored and accessed.

Leading Government/Industry figures will present case studies complemented by the travelling experts at each venue. A mix of speeches, panel discussions, solutions and product displays will ensure that the issues of direct concern to you will be addressed.

Register online for FREE now, visit http://www.itp.net/events/storage

Riyadh

May 2: Sun Microsystems: Introducing Sun Fire Systems, Sheraton Hotel & Towers

Sun Microsystems invites you to join them for the Middle East launch of the Sun Fire(tm) midframe servers, the first in a new line of highly available servers that deliver true mainframe-class capability to your network in a mid-range system.

To register online please visit http://www.itp.net/events/sun

May 21: The Storage Roadshow: with ACN & Network Middle East, Al Khozama Hotel

In the new e-economy storage has emerged as the essential factor for management of any company's information and how it is shared, stored and accessed.

Leading Government/Industry figures will present case studies complemented by the travelling experts at each venue. A mix of speeches, panel discussions, solutions and product displays will ensure that the issues of direct concern to you will be addressed.

Register online for FREE now, visit http://www.itp.net/events/storage
||**||Recruitment|~||~||~|Are you looking to hire experienced channel people to expand your business? Why not advertise your positions to over 3,000 registered members of the Middle East reseller channel for FREE every week in eCRN?

If so please send a message to Recruitment today and we will add your job listing to the next edition of eCRN.

EMPA Middle East FZCO: Regional distributor of Intel and Quantum

Wanted: Sales Engineers with channel experience & knowledge of the North Africa and/or Middle East region.

Must be able to travel frequently.

APPLY NOW: Please send an email attaching a CV to recruit@empa-me.com

Aptec Saudi Arabia

Wanted: Young, educated people willing to work in a fast moving company.

The following positions are open to appropriate candidates:

Retail Sales Specialist
A sound knowledge of the retail business would be appreciated.

The candidate should have very good communication skills and a good command of English.

His job is to create his own channel while passing up leads, giving time and support to his customers through daily visits or/and daily telephone contacts.

The position is based in Saudi Arabia.

The company will provide training on products.

Retail Business Developer
The position needs a previous experience in the retail market, ideally in IT, distribution or both.

The candidate should be holding a degree in Commerce or IT from a valuable university.

The candidate should have a very good command of English and should position himself as the Retail Office of the company.

Daily contacts with both customers and vendors, accuracy in reporting and development of marketing activities around his brands are required.

The Retail Business Developer will have to break into the market with major brands and to manage his Sales Specialist and his channel.

The position is based in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia with regular visits paid to customers/users Kingdom wide.

Networking Sales Specialist
A sound experience in selling networking products is needed here.

Understanding the end-user market is a must as it drives the sales to our second tier partners.

The candidate should have very good communication skills and a good command of English.

His job is to create his own channel while passing up leads, giving time and support to his customers through daily visits or/and daily telephone contacts.

The position is based in Saudi Arabia.

The company will provide training on products.

Telesales (two to three positions available)
We would like to invite here all people interested in the IT business.

People with experience in sales, in IT, or juniors are welcome.

Candidates have to speak English.

Dedication to customers is the rule. Your daily contacts, permanent follow-up on quotations and 100% availability will make the difference, willingness and happiness will do the rest.

Positions based in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

Oracle Product Manager
The candidate must hold a degree in Commerce from a valuable University.

A sound understanding of the IT world, its moves its requirements and future trends would help the ideal candidate to step quickly in the driver seat.

Daily contacts with both customers and vendors, accuracy in reporting and development of marketing activities around his brands are required.

A good command of English is a must.

The position is based in Saudi Arabia (Riyadh) with regular visits paid to customers/users Kingdom wide.

Tech Data FZ LLC: Sales, Financial, and Marketing positions
Distribution without Limits!! These are wide-ranging roles in an environment that is creative, progressive, challenging and rewarding and the growth plans for the region are phenomenal.

Director of Sales: develop and ensure implementation of sales strategies and concepts in line with the company's strategies. Direct and control sales operations with the team to achieve agreed upon revenue and margin targets of the company within the company's strategy and to contribute to the country's annual operating plan. Ensure superior customer satisfaction.

Finance Director: you will ensure all projects and initiatives contribute to agreed strategic objectives, advise on maximizing collective income where opportunities impact on various divisions. Responsibilities include financial planning and a strong control regime in a multi-site environment and you will be charged with bringing a broad based knowledge of economic, financial and commercial trends and offer detailed leadership in the finance, treasury and accounting functions

Marketing and Communications Manager: develop and ensure implementation of Marketing strategies and concepts in line with the company's strategies. Direct and control the marketing operations and resources to support the Sales, Finance and Operations functions in achieving agreed upon targets within the annual operating plan.

Apply now: contact Zakeera Vidler HR Manager in full confidence on ZakeeraV@techdata.co.ae
||**||Next Month|~||~||~|In Next Month's Computer Reseller News Middle East

MAY 2001 FEATURES

Franchising
A leading computer peripheral supplier has taken a new approach to the Middle East channel model, relying on local partners throughout the Gulf to take the initiative and be their representatives in the region. But it is more than a simple vendor/reseller relationship: this model requires the reseller to act as a franchisee, essentially having the look and feel of the vendor and carrying out all its business as if it was a branch office.

Retail
The squeeze is on, and only the best will survive. What can small-time retailers learn from the new Middle East giants, and can they change before it is too late?

ASP
All talk, no action, or a real good-sense business model? The ASPs in the region say they are ready to do business and that they will rely on channels to take that message out to their customers. But will it work, and is the region ready for this today?

Behind the Scenes: financial trends; who is winning and who is losing; company acquisitions, mergers, and sell-offs.

Fast Forward: finding new solution add-ons to increase your overall margins.

E-Business: technologies and trends in this emerging channel opportunity.

Logistics: logistics, shelf life, and product cycles and how they affect the channel.

Upstarts & Startups: companies bucking the trends and new technologists with no respect for the status quo.

Infrastructure: the big-project VARs and what they are working on now.

Dealers Wanted: information on all the new vendors looking for resellers in the Middle East.

If you think you have anything to contribute to one of the above features - we would be very happy to hear from you. Contact CRN editorial at crn.newsdesk@itpmedia.com ||**||

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