There's gold in them thar regional reseller channels. At least it's turning out that way for wholesale and distribution specialist IT 'n PC. Over the past two years the Brisbane organisation has been assembling a preferred dealer network covering regional Queensland. Now business - and interest from major suppliers - is booming, according to IT 'n PC managing director Corey Tai.
Last week, representatives from 26 suppliers, including Acer, Texas Instruments, Lexmark, Intel, Canon, Kyocera and Sony, attended a three-day conference mounted by IT 'n PC for its Regional Preferred Dealer (RPD) network.
The number of outlets in the network stands at 18 and that is due to rise shortly to about 24, Tai said. The loyalty of resellers involved in the RPD network plus the high profiles they command in their respective local communities are strong selling points for suppliers, he said.
Dealers in the network say IT 'n PC is more attuned to their needs than distributors in southern centres that tend to be more cavalier in their treatment of geographically remote resellers.
"Although we can buy very reasonably through IT 'n PC, we could get the same thing more cheaply if we go interstate," said Geoff Hosking, director of Burnettronics in the town of Kingaroy, northwest of Brisbane.
"But we have been bitten by the attitudes of some of the big southern organisations. They couldn't care less (about the cost and delays associated with long distance support).
"The big thing with IT 'n PC is they are very proactive with their support. If something goes wrong and we need a part, it is there the next morning, and no questions asked.
"We've been with them for about 18 months and they've organised two three-day conferences in that time."
At the heart of the RPD concept is an exclusivity agreement where resellers are guaranteed exclusive rights in their individual regions to the Datamini range of PCs supplied through IT 'n PC.
Said Burnettronics' Hosking: "That is attractive but the fact that we are allowed to do local support on the machines so they don't have to leave town is probably the biggest bait for us."
IT 'n PC
Tel (07) 3252 1025
Fax (07) 3252 1009