Broad-based IT distributor Ingram Micro has announced a restructure that will see 18 staff, or 8 per cent of the distributor's Australian operations, made redundant.
The redundancies are part of a far-reaching restructure that will see the distributor focus its resources on the growth areas of IT distribution while scaling back its operations in areas of stagnant or negative growth.
Ingram managing director, Steve Rust said the distributor's server/desktop/mobile division and printer/peripheral/networking division will be merged into one entity under product director for systems, Roger Bushell. The other remaining division, which supplies OEM components to assemblers, will remain under the management of OEM product director, Robert Lee.
"We could see some indifferent business practices evolving in the existing organisation," said Rust. "Some parts of the business were proving more profitable than others, so we are shifting resources into these areas."
Rust named storage, mobile computing and networking products as the high growth areas the distributor will invest in, while the distributor will scale back its focus on desktop computers and some peripheral products.
"It's a tough market for these products," he said. "The margins are pretty thin and in some cases their growth is not just stagnant, it is negative."
Rust said the redundancies and organisational restructure are not due to any downturn in Ingram's growth. Nor was it a response to any pressure from its US parent, uncertainty over the HP/Compaq merger or the duplication of roles created by its recent acquisitions, including the storage business from distributor Simms International. Ingram's year-on-year growth was 10 per cent for June, 13 per cent for July and 40 per cent for August, according to a statement by the company.
"It is merely about investing in high growth areas and divesting in others," he said.
While 18 staff have been informed that they will depart before the 31st of October, Rust said that the distributor has actually increased its staff by around 45 since the start of the year. In the next two to three months, Rust predicted Ingram Micro will make some significant investments that will introduce new product lines to the distributor, and he will recruit people with skills in these new product lines.
"For resellers, the main benefit from all of this will be our improved execution and better performance in the marketplace," he said.
Photograph: Ingram Micro's MD, Steve Rust