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Microsoft to axe OEM distributors

Software giant Microsoft is overhauling its go-to-market strategy in the Middle East, with the vendor cutting down on its regional distribution partners.

Software giant Microsoft is overhauling its go-to-market strategy in the Middle East, with the vendor cutting down on its regional distribution partners.

In a move designed to facilitate the vendor’s transition to an in-country focused model, three of the four distributors currently authorised to distribute original equipment manufacturer (OEM) licences regionally will lose that status.

The three that don’t make the cut — out of Aptec, Logicom, Mindware and Tech Data — will become in-country UAE distributors, giving Microsoft just one regional distributor for OEM licences.

IT Weekly sister title Channel Middle East understands Microsoft’s OEM team is now in the closing stages of finalising its plans.

Tolga Altinordu, OEM director at Microsoft Gulf, said: “Having four regional distributors will be too much. We cannot expect the same level of investment and engagement from all the distributors because the market is not that big. We need them to focus and prioritise the markets where they want to operate.”

In addition to its existing quartet of regional distribution partners, Microsoft also uses other wholesalers to distribute its OEM licences in the Middle East. These include Emitac Distribution in Qatar, Redington Gulf in Oman, and Unatrac and ZAK in Kuwait.

Microsoft also said this week it has added UAE PC assembler Sky Electronics to its OEM list.

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