Cellnet looks to ship direct to retailers from China facility

Cellnet looks to ship direct to retailers from China facility

Cellnet has denied its plans to ship IT and telco products directly to Australian retailers from China will see it consolidating its local warehouses.

Last week, the ASX-listed distributor acquired the brand licences and Asian facilities of accessories vendor, Scala.

Cellnet managing director, Stephen Harrison, said Scala, which produces telco accessories and bags as well as a range of leather goods and non-IT products, had been looking to exit the telco business.

Under the new agreement, Cellnet has taken over the lease of Scala’s China facility and its dozen Chinabased staff.

“This will give us a good hub in China to consolidate a lot of our products and kit, such as packaging, and our shipments out of China,” Harrison said. “At the moment, we have orders coming in from everywhere.”

Products Cellnet accesses from China include IBM, Asus, Lenovo and Acer hardware. Harrison said its ultimate goal was to ship direct from China to Australian customers.

“It’s not so much for SMBs or our smaller IT resellers but the mass retailers and tier-one players,” he said. “By shipping directly in bulk to the customer we can save a lot of time and money.”

Although the international facility will cut out some local warehousing and shipment steps, Harrison said there were no plans to downsize its Australian warehouses in the short-term.

“We will continue to have a lot of other products that we can’t do this with. We are growing the business, so we haven’t looked at the warehouse situation. We’re always looking at new vendors and products and I don’t see us reducing the warehouses,” he said.

“The biggest value for the Cellnet Group is to have a presence in China. It can also work both ways and allow us licence to sell our telco products into that market.”

In other news, Cellnet has lost its authorised distributor status with telco accessories vendor, BlueAnt.

Harrison said the vendor had terminated the agreement, and added the partnership had been responsible for a substantial number of Cellnet’s car kit sales.

BlueAnt produces Bluetooth and hands-free accessories for mobile phones.

“It’s a bit disappointing, but it was BlueAnt’s decision to make, and we have other vendors in that space to push into the market,” Harrison said. “We are a distributor for Jabra, who is the largest vendor in this space, we have our own brand and a few smaller vendors as well. We expect those vendors to pick up the BlueAnt sales.”

Matthew Sainsbury contributed to this report.

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