Packard Bell pieces together local distribution structure
Recent agreements with ICC in KSA and Trigon in UAE unlikely to be the last
Packard Bell has opened the door to more distribution signings in the Middle East after admitting it might need additional distributors to give it coverage in key or under-served markets.
The Acer-owned brand has mounted a channel offensive since its launch in the region two years ago, culminating in several major distribution deals. It recently signed ICC in Saudi Arabia and Trigon in the UAE, adding to earlier agreements with Redington - also in the UAE - Better Business in Egypt and Distinet in Lebanon.
Shashank Sharma, regional sales director for Packard Bell, stressed the company would continue to be careful with its selection of distributors, but noted there was room for expansion.
"I don't think in any of the markets we would want to say our distribution network is already done and dusted," he said. "You would always like to say there are opportunities for people. Qatar, Kuwait, Oman and Jordan are places you would look at [for distributors] and even in markets like Saudi Arabia, one distributor might not be enough because of the sheer credit requirements for the channel."
Packard Bell's policy so far has been to appoint distributors that don't already have multiple consumer PC brands in their portfolio to ensure maximum focus on its offering.
"We are intending to develop and support the dealer channel more effectively to make sure the brand engagement we are doing is actually leading to results, which is why we need distributors who can focus and support the channel," said Sharma.
Packard Bell's focus on harnessing the distribution channel to increase its presence in the dealer segment forms the second stage of a strategy that initially began with a drive to cement relationships with the region's top power retailers.
Since its launch in the region, the vendor has tied up directly with retailers such as Jarir, Extra, Obeikan, Alghanim and CompuMe Egypt, as well as Sharaf DG, Jumbo and Jacky's Electronics in the UAE.