Kyocera Mita refreshes products and channel programs

Kyocera Mita refreshes products and channel programs

Kyocera Mita has announced a major model change across its imaging range that it hopes will help it eat back into ground it has lost to Brother during the past 12 months.

The imaging vendor is currently nearing the end of a national road show that has unveiled new printers, copiers and multifunction devices (MFDs). The shows have also been used to promote new channel incentives and a revamped partner website.

Kyocera Mita Australia managing director, David Finn, said the company had spent the past four years working to minimise conflicts that were created by Kyocera’s acquisition of Mita.

He estimated that 55 per cent of the vendor’s business was now made up of printer and entry-level copier sales through the distribution channel, a further 35 per cent came from the sale and support of enterprise machines through its total solution provider (TSP) channel and the remaining 10 per cent via direct government contracts.

Finn said Kyocera had lost focus on its printer business recently, resulting in a five per cent fall in market share last year, but said it was now committed to regaining lost ground.

“I acknowledge Brother’s rise through mass market and retail channels but we will look to re-establish a 20 per cent share in the printer market,” he said. “The channel has a short memory and will engage quickly if you come back with good products and business models.”

Kyocera is planning to launch a new dealer website within the next six weeks with features including product information and detailed technical specifications, firmware and software upgrades for technical partners, and internal development tools designed to help resellers put together tenders and quotes.

It will also link to the vendor’s sites in the US and Europe.

Finn claimed Kyocera Mita was in discussion with Westpac about the possibility of introducing a credit scheme that resellers could offer to customers as this was currently a big differentiator for mass merchants such as Harvey Norman.

He said the vendor planned to contact larger distribution partners – including Tech Pacific and Ingram Micro – to identify top Kyocera resellers.

“We would like to develop a program where we work more closely with these guys and the distributors act as a fulfilment house,” he said. Kyocera has also budgeted to spend $1 million per year on rewarding the sales staff of its reseller partners during the next five years. It is issuing debit cards that will accredit points for all sales made and allow the holders to spend the money wherever they like. As part of the scheme, it will pick up the fringe benefit taxes.

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