eChannel 13 April 2003

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By  Mark Sutton Published  April 11, 2003

Editorial Leader|~||~||~|HP boosts channel

Hewlett-Packard has announced its new channel partners for the UAE last week, and it looks like the vendor is aiming at taking as large a slice of the Emirates market as possible. Six new distributors and seven new VARs have been handed HP contracts, along with existing partner Emitac. While this may seem like rather a lot of partners, with HP's market leadership, you can guarantee that each of them will be doing its best to make a splash with their new vendor. Resellers should stand to benefit from the competition, customers will have a wider choice and more outlets to buy from and the distributors themselves are likely to do well with HP. In fact, the new deals look pretty good all round—unless you happen to be a rival vendor, in which case—better look out.

||**||News|~||~||~|Hewlett-Packard announces new channel partners for the UAE

Hewlett-Packard has revealed its new channel partners for the UAE. The vendor has appointed a number of new partners for its various product lines, following the end of exclusive distribution agreements for the UAE.

The new channel structure includes agreements with VADS such as Almasa, Aptec, Jumbo, Redington, Tech Data and Magirus for the volume commercial solutions; and Alpha Data, CNS, Emitac, Intertec, Itqan, MDS, Raqmiyat and Seven Seas for the corporate end-user business.

“We are pleased to extend our partnerships with these valuable distributors. In selecting our channel partners, we place great value on excellent logistics management, financial stability, HP product knowledge and a history of solid relations,” said Christoph Schell, general manager of the Personal Systems Group and Commercial Channel, HP Middle East.

“We are confident that HP’s consolidated channel has the expertise, on-the ground-support and credit capabilities to cater to our end-users. HP looks forward to a continued leadership in the market,” he added.

The different partners will each be handling different aspects of the HP line, according to their expertise and focus on different fields. Jumbo and Redington will cover consumer systems, while Tech Data and Almasa will handle printing and imaging products. Aptec and Tech Data will also carry the commercial personal systems products.

At the high end Magirus will handle distribution of business critical computing products and enterprise storage solutions. Emitac, which has a 25 year history with HP, will have the whole range of all HP products for the Middle East region.

For the single tier enterprise partners, the full range of servers, storage and PC products will be available.

Aptec set to expand

Following a year, which saw its profits grow 35% and staffing levels increase, value added distributor Aptec has set its sights on robust growth for 2003.

Aptec, which announced total revenues of $250 million for 2002, is set to follow its good performance by expanding its operations in the Middle East in line with the expected growth of the IT sector.

Bahaa Salah, the regional general manager for Aptec Gulf is confident the company has the resources to continue performing well in the market, with the company seeking a 40% profits rise this year.

“Aptec is geared to spread its wings in this region through a systematic expansion programme. Our experience and expertise puts us in a highly favourable position to meet our goals and offer world-class standards of service to the resellers,” he said.

According to the company’s sources targeting more SMEs is a key part to the company’s expansion plan, which Salah believes holds high potential for increased sales.

“The region’s booming IT market will revolve around the SME segment. Overall we have found this to be an effective strategy and are confident our growth in this sector will continue. Aptec will continue to concentrate its energies on consolidating its base in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region which has given us excellent results in recent years,” he said.

The company expects to achieve this by providing a range of extra benefits to resellers including minimal shipping charges, business-to-business online ordering and support services with an Auto Track facility, according to Salah. “Our strategy for 2003 is to turn our resellers into ambassadors for the vendors we represent and thus provide high comfort levels to the customers.”

Almasa and Acer announce new partnership

Dubai-based, regional distributor Almasa has secured a deal with global PC vendor Acer to distribute its range of computer monitors across the Middle East.

The new deal signifies good news for the region, which has been struggling to cope with demand for LCD and CRT monitors, and Acer is expecting huge sales as a result of the deal, which will see its range of 15” and 17” LCD monitors hitting stores in the near future.

“There is no doubt that consumers are crying out for top-quality monitors. Recognising the huge potential that exists we are delighted to tie up with Almasa, who enjoy an excellent reputation for the standard of service they provide and the breadth of their experience in the Middle East,” said Krishna Murthy, general manager of Acer Computers Middle East division.

The Acer contract is another successful procurement by the company, which Parvez Ahmed, director of sales and marketing for Almasa believes will boost the company’s broad range. “Consumers in the UAE want the latest and best technology. This deal strengthens our position by enabling us to supply the market with top-quality products,” said Parvez Ahmed, director of sales and marketing for Almasa.

Acer was awarded ‘Superbrand’ status in the Middle East last month, for its impressive performance in 2002, after IDC figures showed the company had grown its market by more than 27%, rising to the number two market share ranking in the notebook space in Europe, Middle East and Africa.

The tradition of growth is reinforced by the new deal as Jacob Varghese, regional sales manager for Acer explained. “We believe that LCD monitors will make a major contribution to Acer’s growth in the region over the next year. As part of our business strategy we will continue to develop our reseller network. Our partnership with Almasa will form a cornerstone of our aggressive marketing approach.”

Dell appoints new distributor for Sultanate of Oman

Dell has appointed Oman Computer Services (OCS) as a distributor for Oman. OCS will be targeting the SMB and enterprise markets in the Sultanate.

“The new partnership with OCS falls within Dell’s ongoing efforts to provide the best possible service and support to our clients in the Middle East and we are looking forward to strengthening our presence in Oman as a result of our cooperation with OCS,” explained Michael Collins, Dell general manager for the Middle East.

OCS will carry a number of Dell product lines, including the Optiplex and Dimension desktops, Latitude and Inspiron notebooks, PowerEdge servers and PowerVault and Dell EMC storage systems. The company will also provide service and support for the product ranges.

“It has always been our endeavour to empower our customers, to meet their technology challenges, by bringing quality products and services to them,” explained CE Potnis, general manager of OCS. “We are pleased to be working with Dell in delivering top quality IT solutions to clients throughout the Sultanate of Oman."

||**||Dealer Incentives|~||~||~|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.

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MGE Escape to Egypt
MGE gives you a reason to smile with Nile Smiles—Escape to Egypt
Now, as an MGE Middle East Reseller you could win yourself an exotic fully paid holiday to Egypt for the MGE MEA VIP Conference in May 2003.
A journey around the Great Pyramids & the magnificent Sphinx to explore their timeless charisma. A captivating cruise on the Nile. And most excitingly a mesmerizing trip to Sharm-al-Sheikh. With the Red Sea on one side & Mt. Sinai on the other the pristine coral reefs are bound to beguile all your senses. Indulge in scuba diving, snorkeling & parachute sailing and you are sure to satisfy all your adventure instincts. All in all it’s going to be a spell binding experience.
What do you have to do to win the MGE Escape to Egypt Tour ?
Send us a mail to register with MGE Gulf and then every time you purchase an MGE product between Feb 15th and April 15th, 2003, just email/fax or post a copy of your purchase invoice to MGE Gulf to collect your Nile Smiles needed to win the MGE Escape to Egypt Tour. Your target to qualify for the your is a minimum of 700 Nile Smiles.
For further details please contact: Rahul Sikka, Distribution Manager, MGE UPS Systems Gulf
Tel: +971 4 881 1933
Fax: +971 4 881 1939 or see

||**||Events 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.


May 31: The Middle East IT Security Roadshow, providing highly relevant intelligence for to meet the region’s corporate IT security needs. Sheraton Hotel. For more information see or call Yehya Mohklati on +971 4 391 2833


April 14-15: METAmorphosis 2003 conference and technology showcase delivering the integrated portfolio, presented by META Group. Emirates Towers Hotel. For more information contact META group:, +971 4 294 0044

April 12-16: Effective Networking with TCP/IP, A five day hands on course to exploit the features and capabilities of TCP/IP. Crown Plaza Hotel. For more information see IIR at: or call +971 4 335 2437

April 24: Symantec Ghost 7.5 one day training. Learn how to use Symantec's Ghost for enterprise PC deployment, management, recovery and cloning presented by Manoj Kumar. ExecuTrain Dubai. For registration, please contact

April 27-30: Successfully Managing IT projects in Banks, Avoid common pitfalls that side-track IT projects in banks and financial insitutions. Metropolitan Palace Hotel. For more information see IIR at: call +971 4 335 2437

May 19-20: Cards Middle East 2003, the only Middle East event for smart cards, e-payments, smart chips and m-commerce, organised by Terrapinn. Al Bustan Rotana Hotel. For more information contact Simon Reid on: or
+44 207 242 1508

May 26: The Middle East IT Security Roadshow, providing highly relevant intelligence for to meet the region’s corporate IT security needs. Fairmont Hotel. For more information see or call Yehya Mohklati on +971 4 391 2833


June 2-6: Computex 2003. Taipei World Trade Centre. For more information see:


April 27- May 1: Gitex Saudi Arabia, presented by Riyadh Exhibitions Company, with DWTC and ITP. Riyadh Exhibition Centre. For more information see:

May 28: The Middle East IT Security Roadshow, providing highly relevant intelligence for to meet the region’s corporate IT security needs. Inter-Continental Hotel. For more information see or call Yehya Mohklati on +971 4 391 2833

||**||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. And please don't forget to notify us once the vacancy is filled.

Aptec Gulf

APTEC is a leading value added distributor in the Middle East, Africa, East Mediterranean, Turkey and CIS. The company is a distributor for major brands and provides its products and services through a network of 8000 reseller outlets. APTEC's operations cover over 50 countries in the Middle East, Africa, Mediterranean and Europe. The company has subsidiaries and presence in Egypt, Kuwait, Lebanon, Nigeria, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Turkey, UAE and the United Kingdom.

Technical Support Manager

The ideal candidate should have certifications in Internet Security products like Antivirus, Firewall/VPN, Intrusion Detection/Prevention and Content Filtering. Symantec certified professionals will have a definite advantage. You will be responsible for installing, maintaining and supporting Internet Security Solutions through Channel partners of Aptec. You will also be responsible for managing a call center handling technical upport queries. A self-motivated person capable of carrying out given tasks independently and contributing to the overall profit of the Internet Security business unit, you will be reporting directly to the Business Unit Manager. Extensive travelling within Middle East and Africa would be required and a very attractive salary and perks await the right candidate.

For more details, call Aptec on +971 4 336 6885.


One of the leading International IT distribution companies in the region, Empa is an authorized distributor of Intel, Fujitsu, Quantum, Biostar and other prominent brands in the Middle East, Central Asia and North Africa regions. Empa seeks ambitious, dynamic and hardworking professional for the below mentioned post.

Salesperson (Farsi/English Speaking)

The candidates must be engineering graduates, preferably computer science/electronics engineering. Should possess minimum 2 years work experience in IT product sales with strong knowledge of Middle East market. A valid UAE driving license is a must and having a car is an added advantage. Target oriented and excellent in good customer service skills.

All positions are based in Jebel Ali Free Zone. The successful candidates will be offered attractive salary, bonus and other benefits.

E-mail your resumes to or visit to fill out an application on the web.

||**||Next month|~||~||~|In Next Month's Channel Middle East

March 2003 FEATURES

IT Retailing

IT superstores have been around for some time in the Middle East, and the companies behind the biggest chains keep on pushing out more and more stores. Have the IT mega-retailers carved out a significant slice of the region’s IT market, can the independant showrooms still compete with these giants, and can IT Superstores really deliver the expertise required for SMB deployments?

Desktop security

As the region comes under growing scrutiny from hackers, crackers and script kiddies, so the demand for security solutions is on the rise. But it is not just the corporate customers that need defences for their infrastructure, SOHO and SMB users are at risk too. We look at the products that protect the desktop end user.

Business insights: financial trends; who is winning and who is losing; company acquisitions, mergers, and sell-offs.

Solution: success stories from the channel.

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

People: skills, recruitment, human resources

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 Channel editorial at||**||

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