D-Link to cement its SMB focus in the GCC in 2017
Networking solutions vendor wants its partners to have the largest share of business in the Gulf
D-Link Corporation, a provider of connectivity solutions for small, medium and large enterprise business networking, has announced that it is reinforcing its focus in the GCC as the company wants its channel partners to grow their share of business in this market.
According to the vendor, the strategy to strengthen its focus on the GCC market comes at a time when D-Link has continued to witness growth despite a tough business climate.
Sakkeer Hussain, director - Sales and Marketing, D-Link Middle East and Africa (MEA), said the GCC has continued to show maturity in the market even though spending slowed down in 2016 largely due to the drop in crude oil prices.
Hussain pointed out that the UAE leads in terms of the number of technology projects, IT spending and business in general and is closely followed by Kuwait, Qatar and Oman. “Saudi Arabia is by far the biggest market in the GCC but doing business in the Kingdom is not easy especially now that the country is moving away from its reliance on oil revenue,” he observed. “That said, the SMB segment is doing well in Saudi Arabia and we have seen that with our own networking offerings.”
He explained that without doubt, the broader Middle East and the channel business has been affected and impacted by the drop in oil prices. “That has naturally put further pressure on margins hence the need for vendors and distributors to step in and help partners to navigate these challenges so that they emerge much stronger when the market improves,” he said. “I believe that opportunities in the PC hardware space will continue to be tight given that this sector has witnessed sluggish sales in the last few years.”
Hussain said D-Link has decided to reinforce its networking business in the GCC because the company is seeing steady growth in the networking segment as Internet broadband penetration continues to grow in the consumer, SOHO and SMB space.
“The high Internet penetration rates in the GCC are helping to push the networking solutions market,” he noted. “D-Link has a wide product and solutions portfolio, which the partner ecosystem can take advantage of. From the broad product categories and multiple offerings, we believe the company has the broadest array to meet the demands of every partner that we serve in the GCC.”
Hussain added that partners who combine products and services have a better chance of earning higher recurring margins.
According to Hussain, the networking, security, managed services, storage all present business prospects for savvy partners to explore. “Add this with opportunities in government, education, healthcare, SMB and SOHO, partners serving any or a combination of these verticals stand a chance to earn decent margins if they can combine their product offerings with services,” he said.