TP-Link to raise channel awareness of its SMB products in MEA
Vendor wants to help channel partners improve their responsiveness to SMB needs in the region
TP-Link Technologies Co Ltd, a provider of SOHO, SMB networking products and wireless LAN solutions, has outlined a plan that will see it help channel partners to raise awareness of its SMB products and solutions in the Middle East and Africa (MEA) market.
According to the vendor, the strategy to reinforce its SMB business comes at a time when the company has started to implement programmes aimed at helping channel partners improve their responsiveness to the needs of SMBs in the region.
Denny Liang, vice president at TP-Link, TP-Link MEA FZE, said although the last 12 months have been challenging for the regional IT industry, smart initiatives and various collaborations through public and private partnerships (PPP) are opening up opportunities for SMBs in the region.
Liang said that's why TP-Link believes that one of the most important steps that solution providers need to take is to help raise awareness and educate their SMB customers about the company's SMB products and solutions.
He said the company is looking at improving its channel partners' business performance and better customer satisfaction as these are the two biggest drivers of IT spending among small businesses. "That's why TP-Link is also working very closely with its distribution partners to extend credit facilities to partners," he said.
Liang pointed out that the scale of operations of SMBs differs from their large counterparts and therefore the challenges faced too differ. "A one-size-fits-all approach doesn't work anymore and dedicated solutions focusing at SMBs need to be provided and that extends to other aspects as well, such as marketing, pricing, and margin support," he said.
He added that despite the market pressure especially on smaller channel partners serving the SMB sector, TP-Link together with its distribution partners is helping them to stay competitive by offering the best price points for products and solutions that are in demand in the SMB space.
He said the company is also working very closely with its distribution partners to extend credit facilities to partners. "We have initiated a lot of initiatives including margin support to our resellers that serve the SMB sector in MEA," he said.
Liang pointed out that given the current market conditions and business climate in MEA, it is critical that channel partners have the right products and solutions from TP-Link and its distribution partners to support SMBs comprehensively. "What we have done at TP-Link is to work with partners on the pipeline, enable their sales and technical teams, and continued to provide training to ensure that they are able to deliver IT infrastructure and solutions that SMBs need to grow their businesses," he added.
He said cost is one of the main hurdles that channel partners are telling TP-Link they are finding challenging when they are working with SMBs in the region. "This has been compounded by the withdrawal of credit insurance cover, which insurance firms provide," he said. "What we are doing to help partners mitigate some of these challenges is to ensure we have the broadest portfolio of SMB products and solutions that suit every small business. We are also working very closely with our distributors on various financing options to mitigate the challenge partners are facing."