UPDATED: Bluechip cuts ties with Canon

UPDATED: Bluechip cuts ties with Canon

Distributor blames thinning margins and over-distribution for the split

Bluechip Infotech is cutting its ties with Canon and will clear out remaining stock over the coming weeks.

Bluechip IT's managing director, Johnson Hsiung, largely attributed to the decision to thinning margins on entry-level printing products and Canon's aggressive retail push. The distributor has been carrying Canon's printing products as well as its digital camera range.

The partnership will officially be terminated on June 1, but Hsiung said it planned to clear all stock in the next couple of weeks. Although Bluechip has been one of Canon's distributors since its merger with BBF in 2003, he said the vendor's product was not making a significant contribution to its overall bottom line.

"We never got much support and there's too many people distributing their products," he said. "Printers have never been our focus. Printer vendors are also increasingly going through the mass merchants and a lot of resellers can now get entry-level models through retailers like OfficeWorks. That makes it difficult for the channel."

Canon has an extensive list of distributors locally including Cellnet, Dicker Data, Express Online, TodayTech, Alloys International and BMS Technology. The vendor also appointed Ingram Micro's recently launched Consumer Home and Office Solutions (CHOS) division last week to distribute its digital camera products and accessories.

Canon Australia national PR manager, Andrew Giles, said the decision to cut Bluechip as a distributor followed a year-long review of its consumer product sales and distribution practices. The review was aimed at allowing the vendor to provide better marketing support to resellers and consistent service nationally.

"Our review also resulted in a decision to streamline our Authorised Distributor network," he said. "We conducted a rigorous process to select the distributors that best fit our strategy. Unfortunately, Bluechip Infotech was not among those selected, but they were naturally offered the opportunity to deal with our Authorised Distributors."

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