Fightback '09: Snakes and ladders

Fightback '09: Snakes and ladders

Good news from the channel

It's been a week of ups and downs for the channel. But there’s no need for dismay, sometimes down is good.

Buyers were pleased when Cisco became the second vendor in recent weeks to drop prices. List prices of its hardware products were sent sliding by 15.25 per cent and a handful of service prices were decreased.

On the upside iiNet (ASX: IIN) led upwards movement with profits rising 28.8 per cent to $25.6 million.

Preliminary financial reports show revenue hitting $418.4 million - a 66.5 per cent increase from last financial year. Earnings before tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) rose 42 per cent to 67.2 million.

Not to be left out, CSG (ASX: CSV) increased revenues by 48 per cent and profits by 24 per cent. The only downwards movement was company debt which was reduced by $17.3 million to $39.3 million.

German software giant, SAP, joined the party with its year-on-year revenue increase of 16 per cent in Australian and New Zealand operations for the April-June period. It said about 15 per cent would be going through the channel.

Meanwhile, ICT and mobile services growth pushed Optus profit up 13 per cent to $139 million and year-on-year growth to 12 per cent.

Telstra (ASX: TLS) performed above market expectations with a 10.3 per cent rise in full-year profits to $4.07 billion.

In other news highlighting IT potential, distributor, Express Data, cited marketplace growth as instrumental in its decision to bring communications headset vendor, Plantronics, into its portfolio.

“Unified Communications is growing at a considerable pace, not just in the quality but also in breadth,” Express Data general manager for vendors, David Peach, said in a release.

“For example, where in the past it might only have been call-centre operators who required headsets, now considering the amount of time the average office worker multitasks while on the telephone, they also need them.”

Chinese manufacturer, Yasen Electronics, was confident of its ability to capitalise on this market, signing a deal with Digital World Warehouse for exclusive distribution for its Visenta product range.

Exclusivity of the partnership expires in 12 months but if agreed sales targets are reached the contract automatically renews every year for up to 10 years.

The distributor said overwhelming interest from resellers had left it supremely confident of hitting the target.

“We are required to sell 2000 units per year but we will probably hit that in the first quarter,” Digital World Warehouse managing director, Eden Fridman said. “We are expecting to shift around 10,000 units in the first year easily.”

Extreme Networks also mentioned the growth in market when it swapped Avnet for Distribution Central in a bid to take a greater value-adding approach to the market and drive growth.

And the change in the industry shows no signs of slowing with a group comprising of industry representatives and ICT companies developing a 10-year roadmap for infrastructure development titled Towards a Smarter Economy: A roadmap to making it happen.

Created in response to the Federal Government’s report into the digital economy the report calls for a quick start in building smarter infrastructure in the energy, water, traffic, healthcare and broadband communications sectors.

That’s it for the good news this week but remember to tune in to ARN’s Fight Back ‘09 for your latest dose of optimism.

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