Print vendor, Kyocera Document Solutions, has marked another record year of sales and growth in the Australian market.
Globally, the Japanese-based company achieved 7.5 per cent increase in net sales to $US13.6 billion, in its financial year ending March 31.
According to its local managing director, David Finn, the company has been averaging 9.5 per cent growth, per year during the past four years in Australia.
“That’s just organic growth, purely through the channel,” Finn said.
Most of the growth is stemming from its distributors, which include Ingram Micro, Dynamic Supplies, Alloys, XiT and BMS.
“We have regular meetings with our distributors and dealers, getting constant feedback, which is helping to shape a lot of our strategies,” he said. “All feedback is good, but it’s what you do with it that’s the trick.
“The key thing is about being open, honest, trustworthy and transparent. Everyone talks about it, but whether they deliver on it is a different thing. I like to think we deliver better than most companies because we do have regular meetings, offer transparency, and we do react well to feedback.”
Finn is aiming to achieve another 7 to 10 per cent growth for the vendor this year, which would mean it has doubled its business during a five-year period. He highlighted the fact software sales were currently representing 20 per cent of its Australian business.
“We need to align our business with where the market is going and the people that know where it’s going are the people that are intimately involved with it,” he said. “We’ve got our objectives and we’ve got to work on how to achieve them through the channel. You can’t always give what everybody wants, but you can get close with a bit of compromise.”
Kyocera currently has about 500 resellers under its KyoStar partner program. Finn said he would like to boost that figure to 1000 within the next year.
The vendor is currently in the process of putting new strategies in place on how to align its business and embracing online retailers.
“Online retailers are here to stay and rather than fight it, you’ve got to embrace it. They’re really good at selling single function printers to people who know what they want and can provide the delivery service to their door,” he said. “But we’re not going to alienate our traditional dealers.”
Finn said online retailers will continue to get stronger, while resellers that just stick to simply moving boxes may possibly have a limited future, unless they offer more services to their customers.
“Small resellers have either got to move into e-tailing or focus on solutions and there are good ones particularly in the print space, where you can make money. But they’ve got to start bundling with security, mobility and services,” he said. “We’re going back to the days of relationship selling and that’s the only way to compete.”
Last year, Kyocera changed its name to reflect on its evolution towards supporting hardware, software and services as an integrated package.