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HP plots to dominate server sector with Middle East channel initiative

HP and Microsoft take their global partnership to a new level by joining forces to set up dedicated OEM channel programme for server resellers across the Middle East.

The Middle East operations of HP and Microsoft have finalised a three-month project that has culminated in the launch of a regional OEM server channel programme.

The initiative will allow resellers in the Middle East to source HP hardware pre-bundled with Microsoft's server operating systems and OS licences, rather than having to purchase the two products separately.

Ryan D'Souza, product manager for industry standard servers at HP Middle East, claims the programme will provide a number of advantages. "The key benefits for resellers will be an increase in margin and an increase in the loyalty of their customer base. It gives the channel simplicity in terms of logistics as they are now able to procure all HP servers as well as Microsoft operating systems from their logistics partner. This provides a reduced cost in terms of how they manage their procurement."

Tolga Altinordu, OEM director at Microsoft Gulf, insists the agreement will provide a "more convenient" way for companies to buy servers and give participating resellers access to special pricing policies.

A number of Microsoft OEM products are included in the overall HP portfolio, including Windows Server 2003 R2 Standard Edition, Small Business Server 2003 R2 Standard Edition, and Small Business Server 2003 R2 Premium Edition.

As part of the programme, HP will also offer 90-day phone-based installation support for the OEM software purchased.

Resellers will be able to access a dedicated website to view the available configurations, but the management and maintenance of inventory will be handed by logistics partners. This includes distributors carrying HP servers and Microsoft software - such as Aptec and Tech Data in the UAE - as well as specific HP distributors such as Emitac.

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