New vendors broaden VExpress horizons

Boutique distributor, VExpress, is looking to partner with several new vendors as part of plans to branch out from its heavily weighted Alcatel business model.

The company has signed three new players in the past 12 months to expand its third-party product stable. Its most recent addition is Addcom, which produces headsets and phone recorders.

VExpress national sales manager, Grant Morrison, said it was the first distributor to be appointed by the vendor in Australia.

Late last year, VExpress also struck an agreement with Eicon to carry its range of fax server adapters.

Not long after, it announced a new contract with Thomson Telecom for its DSL modems and communications equipment.

Morrison said it was still on the hunt for more third-party IP telephony goods that were not only complementary to Alcatel, but could also bring new resellers to its door. For example, the Thomson and Addcom products would allow it to approach dealers that were not selling Alcatel phone systems.

But he stressed there were no plans to wind down its traditional Alcatel business or take on competing products.

"About 60-70 per cent of our business will always be Alcatel, and that's doubling year-on-year," he said. "But we haven't hit our ideal market share. There's been a lot more players entering the game but we're convinced there's a lot of growth yet."

VExpress was established in May 2003 by sister integrator, VoIP, to wholesale Alcatel products. Since then, it has grown its headcount to 20, appointing 14 new staff members in the past two years.

New recruits have included technical and call centre support staff, as well as administration, sales and logistics people, Morrison said.

It had about 100 dealers buying product regularly, he said.

"We're not anywhere near the number of dealers we could support," Morrison said. "The other vendors competing in the SMB space have four or five times as many. So we want to continue to bring on people."

To help fuel sales and create more brand awareness for its latest vendors, VExpress has announced a series of reseller promotions.

The latest is a seven-day holiday to any BreakFree resort for partners who purchase $15,000 worth of Eicon Diva Server products. Participants are also entitled to a 20 per cent discount on product for the rest of the year. The distributor has also put together a points-for-cash promotion with Alcatel, which is running from now until December 21. The two resellers earning the highest amount of points will win a trip to Paris for the annual Alcatel Forum.