US storage vendor Maxtor last week launched itself into the Australian marketplace, appointing e-DataGroup as its sole distributor for its MaxAttach product range, in a bid to effectively capture the small-to-medium business market through the channel.
Bob Grewal, senior director of channel sales at Maxtor's network systems group, said the company had selected e-DataGroup because of the distributor's strong presence in storage and "its ability to create markets for new storage technologies".
In addition, Grewal said people, experience in storage, infrastructure and ability to support customers, were key to e-DataGroup's appointment as Maxtor's distributor.
Maxtor sees resellers as critical to getting the vendor closer to the end user and plans to sell solely through the channel in Australia. "Today's channel offers us the ability to deliver to the small-to-medium businesses more effectively," Grewal said.
Bernie Humphreys, product marketing manager at e-DataGroup said its distribution business had about 4000 resellers. He said network attached " storage (NAS) was an emerging market in Australia and complemented the existing product line up it distributes. e-DataGroup will approach resellers through roadshows, seminars, e-mail and phone calls, and there are also plans for channel programs, said Humphreys.
"They're in the final stages of being formulated now, but we've certainly got plans for some marketing and press releases and road shows."Although he doesn't believe the product is limited to particular verticals, Humphreys said these would naturally form, particularly with resellers who differentiated themselves by specialising in vertical niches.
"There's no industry or geographical limitations on this kind of product. I mean, everybody needs storage . . . It's not as though it's just for medical or education or finance and banking." Humphreys said it was ideal for small-to-medium enterprises, departmental workgroups and remote sites where there was low technical expertise.
Humphreys said its resellers needed to have energy. "We've got all the programs in place, we offer training, technical support and the back-end there, and we're certainly working on the front-end to evangalise NAS and obviously the Max product, and we're really looking for resellers that want to get out there and make the margin and help us along the way."As for predicting growth in the local NAS market more generally, Maxtor's Grewal said it was now a matter of getting the message out to the users of NAS' benefits. "We really believe what's holding [back] the growth of sales today is the [lack of] awareness," he said. "We need to help our resellers with programs that not only educate them but help them educating their end users."Grewal said the company would have a local presence in the Australian market and would be working closely with e-DataGroup and its reseller base.