Cabletron has nailed a "for lease" sign to the door of its Sydney warehouse, after it consummated its channel commitment by signing Anixter as its first distribution partner in Australia.
According to managing director Ian Fewtrell, the company's product portfolio has expanded dramatically through the acquisition of NetVantage and more importantly the Digital network products division. This has seen Cabletron's business more than double during the following months, he said.
Anixter was previously a distributor for Digital's network products divison and is currently a key distributor for 3Com. It will now handle distribution and inventory management initially for what Fewtrell describes as the company's "commodity-based" products.
This refers to products with little or no need for technical support, Fewtrell said. However, Cabletron may use Anixter to distribute its Smart Switch Router range and upcoming Gigabit Ethernet offerings, he added.
Fewtrell was adamant that Cabletron's acquisition of Digital's networking business was no guarantee that Anixter would be taken on as a Cabletron distributor.
"Anixter has proved itself to be one of the most sophisticated channel companies around," Fewtrell said.
"We chose Anixter because of its record in managing distribution systems."
Fewtrell admitted that Anixter has contributed much to the local success of arch rival 3Com, particularly in consumer products. But asked whether he was uncomfortable sharing distribution resources such as Anixter with a competitor, he commented: "I think Gerhard Rumpff [3Com's MD] should be more nervous about the fact that Anixter has taken us on."