Components distributor Synnex has signed an agreement with IT services company Commander to provide maintenance services for the personal computers and servers sold through Synnex resellers.
The deal sees all Mitac-branded servers sold by Synnex bundled with a compulsory one-year warranty for a variety of maintenance services, to be fulfilled by Commander. Maintenance services for PCs will be voluntary with information packs shipped with each PC offering a maintenance program.
National vendor relationship manager for the ASX-listed Commander, Geoff Michael, said the deal had been in the works for the last five months and aimed to provide support for any sale of a Synnex PC or server around Australia.
It draws parallels with the model Compaq pioneered with its ‘Carepaq’ services strategy, he said. Options available to customers ranged from 24x7, same-day or next business day maintenance services, provided on-site to the customer.
Synnex server product manager, Jason Lee, said that the agreement would provide greater confidence among Synnex resellers and their customers. “We wanted to provide more value and support for our reseller channels, but being a distributor and manufacturer, on-site services is not our expertise at the moment,” he said. “We don’t really expect to make a lot of money [out of the provision of services], just provide better support to the channel.”
With Synnex selling about 200 servers a year, Commander believes the server maintenance contracts to be worth more than $500,000 a year. The value of the PC contract is harder to determine - but considering Synnex expects a 35 per cent take up on the offer, that Synnex sells around 5,000 PCs a year, and that the base price of a PC maintenance contract is around $135, Michael estimated the PC arrangement to be worth at least $230,000 a year.
He said 450 of Commander’s 1000-plus staff were field engineers. A team of that size was ‘certainly capable’ of fulfilling such a deal. Most of this expertise came from the ASX-listed company’s acquisitions of systems integrators such as Evolution IT, Centari, CSI and OSI.
The deal has also sparked interest among several other hardware vendors, Michael said, citing recent discussions with Acer and Microsoft for the provision of similar services.
“There are plenty of other vendors who are keen to get on board,” he said.