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Paul Kunert

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Paul Kunert is the editor of Channel Register
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Avnet checks legacy data kit sales stats, panics

Enterprise tech distie Avnet Technology Solutions is back in cost cutting mode amid fears that flakey demand for “legacy” tech will continue. The firm reported an 8.3 per cent decline in sales of $2.13bn for Q3 of fiscal ’16 ended 2 April, this was down 6.9 per cent in constant currency. The top line was at the “low-end of …
Paul Kunert, 29 Apr 2016
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There's never been a better time to be a product reseller... if you like pain

Tough times are here again for the on-premise infrastructure providers with Insight Enterprises the latest to report top line slippage. The global reseller filed sales of $1.17bn for calendar Q1, down four per cent year-on-year, as declines in European and Asia Pacific ops wiped out the slight progress made in North America. …
Paul Kunert, 29 Apr 2016
Trillian chats to a depressed Marvin the Robot in the 2005 film version of Hitchhiker's Guide to Galaxy. C Walt Disney Pictures

Food for Deep Thought: 42 is IBM's answer to Life, the Universe and Everything...

Analysis Deep Thought calculated the number 42 to be the Answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe and Everything. Over at IBM it was the frequency the word "transform" was used to explain another dire quarter. The supercomputer in the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy took 7.5 million years to determine the importance of …
Paul Kunert, 29 Apr 2016

Hewlett Packard Enterprise: Wanna walk the plank voluntarily? You got it

Exclusive Hewlett Packard Enterprise is to initiate a voluntary redundancy (VR) option nearly two months after putting 1,092 UK staff in Enterprise Services (ES) on the chopping block. Techies at HPE were told they were in scope for compulsory job cuts in March including 780 in IT Outsourcing and 173 from the Application Business …
Paul Kunert, 27 Apr 2016

Microsoft fingered for Western Euro PC tragedy

Microsoft last year effectively murdered one part of the mobile PC market that was going gangbusters - Windows with Bing (WwB) - and unsurprisingly this is now reflected in weaker sales across Western Europe. The low-cost WwB portables reached distributors by summer '14, designed to counter what was seen as a growing threat to …
Paul Kunert, 27 Apr 2016
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Outsourcery inks Vodafone finance deal as selloff rumours grow

Sickly slinger of cloud services Outsourcery has signed a finance deal with Vodafone to keep the wolves from the door as it prepares to restructure – or do what some are interpreting as readying itself for a sale. The AIM-listed bringer of infrastructure, apps and UC services revealed at the start of this week it is again …
Paul Kunert, 27 Apr 2016
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Flat sales, falling earnings? That will be FY'16 for Datatec

The parent of integrator Logicalis and distie Westcon is to report a double digit drop in earnings and flat sales for the fiscal ’16 ended February, it warned today. Progress on both fronts was downed by the “significant strengthening of the US dollar and mixed global economic conditions”, South African stock exchange-listed …
Paul Kunert, 26 Apr 2016
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IBM says no, non, nein to Brexit

IBM has left UK staff in no doubt it wants Britain to remain in the European Union even though many of those working in its services division might not be EU-based by the end of 2017. In February, Big Blue was one of 200 large firms across a range of industries that urged Brits to vote to stay in the Union, claiming a "Brexit …
Paul Kunert, 26 Apr 2016
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Cloud gear biz Outsourcery is running out of cash. Again

Misfiring AIM-listed cloud provider Outsourcery appears to be running out of runway. Sales still haven’t matched the predicted highs, cash flow is drying up again and a crash seems possible. The purveyor of infrastructure, software and unified comms clouds has pre-announced its calendar year 2015 results, with revenue up nine …
Paul Kunert, 25 Apr 2016

Larry Ellison's Brit consortium in 'advanced talks' to buy Aston Villa

Larry Ellison is rumoured to be mulling a substantial cash injection into a foundering business which has seen itself unable to compete in recent years with more powerful rivals. No, not Oracle, but Aston Villa, according to the the word on the street and in The Sun, which says that a Brit consortium linked to the US …
Paul Kunert, 21 Apr 2016
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The suits in finance are cutting down on tech spend – Computacenter

Some financial services institutions are taking a break from spending cash on tech, London-based supplier giant Computacenter said today as it reported a Q1 trading update. The services-based reseller revealed a four per cent year-on-year dip in UK turnover to £348.6m for the three months ended 31 March. Product sales dropped …
Paul Kunert, 21 Apr 2016
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Swallow flies into Logicalis UK exec nest

Logicalis has sworn in acting UK boss Bob Swallow as the permanent MD, vowing to fill the other seats in the senior management team next month. Swallow moved to the Slough-based system integrator last summer, first as a contractor to restructure sales for the Cisco team and then as sales director from November. The man has …
Paul Kunert, 20 Apr 2016
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LiveDrive drive by: Backup biz's price hikes will kill us, say resellers

Resellers and customers of web backup biz LiveDrive are digesting its recent sweeping price changes with varying degrees of frustration. Some say they’ll quit the service and others are seeking legal advice. As revealed last week, LiveDrive reseller Monster Cloud, which itself wholesales the online storage services to local …
Paul Kunert, 20 Apr 2016
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Ah, so that's why Adapt wasn't put in the shop window in 2015

The reason why Lyceum-backed Adapt remains Lyceum-backed is contained in their latest set of annual profit and loss accounts - company growth stalled and so a sales process was halted. The London-based outfit was expected to come onto the market last last year and tasked M&A and corporate finance advisor ARMA Partners with …
Paul Kunert, 18 Apr 2016

Mitel nabs Polycom in $1.96bn deal

Elliott Management has struck again: Mitel has agreed to cough $1.96bn for bigger unified comms rival Polycom some months after the activist investor took a stake in both businesses and started the match-making. The $23bn hedge fund took a 6.6 per cent stake in Polycom and 9.6 per cent in Mitel in October and was calling for …
Paul Kunert, 15 Apr 2016
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Microsoft licensing giant yanked off market after sales bid fails

The sales process for Microsoft enterprise licensing house Comparex is "ongoing", the parent company has told us, denying claims from multiple industry sources it is dead in the water. The Raiffeisen Banking Group-owned reseller hired investment banker Jefferies to manage a sales process in May and by September just two …
Paul Kunert, 15 Apr 2016
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Misco: We're moving to the cloud after yesterday's bit barn meltdown

Reseller giant Misco has confirmed it will embark on a crash migration program to shift its infrastructure into the cloud - a day after a datacentre meltdown that froze its e-commerce front-end for six hours. The dash to the cloud while having to maintain a creaking inhouse infrastructure illustrates the dilemma facing …
Paul Kunert, 14 Apr 2016
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Fujitsu Tech Products overhauls direct sales team's pay

Fujitsu’s Technology Products Group (FTPG) says it is going to pay its end user sales team the same amount regardless of whether they transact business via resellers or cut out the middlemen. This is one of the levers the new look team team over at FTPG is pulling to grow business while containing costs, and breaking down the …
Paul Kunert, 13 Apr 2016

Microsoft: We have a bullet ready for 12 competencies

Microsoft is to take 12 "old world" accreditations out back to be shot as it drags channel partners – some of them kicking and screaming – into the cloud. Gavriella Schuster, GM of Microsoft’s worldwide partner group, said it will “streamline” certifications and funnel investment on “building successful cloud practices”. “ …
Paul Kunert, 13 Apr 2016

Web wobbles at Misco: Might be back up today, or tomorrow

Not wanting to be totally outdone by the recent outage at arch rival Insight Enterprises, online reselling rival Systemax Europe - trading as Misco - has battled its own web demons for the best part of this morning. The company’s site first fell over at least two hours ago with its Twitter feed acknowledging the worldwide …
Paul Kunert, 13 Apr 2016
Amazon under a cloud

IT suppliers: Amazon is starting to pay its debts. Some of them, anyway

Amazon has presented irate distributors and vendors with a deal that will see them receive some payment for historical disputed deliveries stretching back a year. As we exclusively revealed last month, suppliers are battling the retail giant to get paid for orders they claimed were delivered from the spring of 2015. The …
Paul Kunert, 13 Apr 2016
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Capita not sitting on Hands: IT Enterprise Services boss splits

Capita IT Enterprise Services (ITES) overlord Peter Hands has strapped on his walking boots and strolled right out of the business for pastures news, the company has confirmed. Insiders claimed Hands had been under some pressure from the group’s joint COO Dawn Marriott-Sims, who was critical of the whole of ITES, “especially …
Paul Kunert, 11 Apr 2016

IBM's tops sales staff face long haul...to Hawaii

IBM is whisking its biggest sales hitters in Global Tech Services to Hawaii as a pat them on the back for their efforts, while others in the division head out the door on stat redundancy terms. In a 5 April internal blog post, Martin Blackburn, COO for GTS Europe, confirmed that UK and Ireland’s “top performers” were selected …
Paul Kunert, 08 Apr 2016
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Troubled Azzurri Comms offloaded to AIM-listed Maintel

AIM-listed comms and networking integrator Maintel has conditionally agreed to slurp struggling rival Azzurri Comms for £48.5m - a company that is twice its size. At the same time, the London-based Maintel confirmed it is also to place Ordinary Shares on the market at 700 pence each with the aim of generating roughly £24m to …
Paul Kunert, 08 Apr 2016
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Fujitsu Services hacks bonuses to pay for minimum wage hike

Exclusive Folk at Fujitsu Services Engineering Services Ltd (FSESL) have claimed that changes to their bonuses made to accommodate a rise in the minimum wage will actually leave some of them worse off. From 1 April – the Fools’ Day – the UK organisation complied with new government legislation to raise the National Living Wage for those …
Paul Kunert, 08 Apr 2016
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Gartner: Why we had to dash tech cash splash

Tech spending stats look quite respectable for 2016, but only in certain product areas or geographies and only in a constant currency basis. Performing a classic flip-flop, Gartner today downgraded earlier forecasts by a whole percentage point, and told us it now expects customers to collectively find $3.49 trillion for new …
Paul Kunert, 07 Apr 2016
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Exertis slurps wireless distie Siracom

One of the UK’s bulkiest tech distributors Exertis has piled on a few more pounds by acquiring wireless infrastructure and security minnow Siracom for an undisclosed sum. Siracom, which also has offices in beautiful Basingstoke, sells products and services from vendors including Samsung, Fortinet and a bunch of lesser knowns. …
Paul Kunert, 07 Apr 2016
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Logicalis Euro honcho Spirlet quits for exec role at Cisco

Logicalis European head honcho Arnaud Spirlet is to exit the business before fully implementing the turnaround strategy he drafted. Spirlet, who was made head of Europe in October 2014 when he succeeded Ian Cook, is to take the keys to the top exec suite at Cisco’s Belgium and Luxembourg operation. Company insiders at Cisco …
Paul Kunert, 06 Apr 2016
The lift-off of New Shepard

3D printers set for lift off? Yes, yes, yes... at some point in the future

3D printing is still perched on the edge of greatness, industry types insist, but sales are not yet matching the marketing bluster. The latest stats in the shipment stakes arrived on our desks today from the number-crunchers at Context - units sales went up 19 per cent year-on-year in Q4 to 73,012 machines. Some 96 per cent …
Paul Kunert, 05 Apr 2016
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Kelway founder and CEO Phil Doye steps out of role

Exclusive The brand swap isn't the only major change happening at the London-based Kelway – company founder and CEO Phil Doye is stepping down from daily operational duties, El Chan can reveal. The services-based reseller was acquired by the world's largest tech dealer CDW in July, and much of the senior management has remained in place …
Paul Kunert, 30 Mar 2016
Happy business people celebrate. Photo by Shutterstock

R&D white coats at HP Inc will make corporate ID into wearable tech

The consumerisation of wearables has got HP Inc’s chief techie thinking about ways to reach out and touch everyone on the planet. The obvious way to do it? Sex up the corporate name badge, of course. Shane Wall, CTO at the PC and printer monster told us the company is eyeing up the top spot in commercial wearables – though …
Paul Kunert, 29 Mar 2016
Second-generation iPod shuffle

Dell presses shuffle, revamps UK channel

Dell has given its channel team a lick of paint with some mid-level management shuffling at the UK organisation, El Chan can reveal. Andy Corcoran is set to start as regional sales director from the beginning of next month with a remit to help partner development managers squeeze more business out of the resellers they oversee …
Paul Kunert, 24 Mar 2016
An eraser

Kelway's American owners to import CDW International brand to UK

Philip Kelway Doye's middle name will disappear from his firm's corporate HQ on 4 April and be replaced with CDW International, its American parent’s brand for global ops. CDW, which sells IT to 10 million SMBs in the US and turns over in excess of $50m a day, acquired Kelway in August last year for $431m and is assimilating …
Paul Kunert, 24 Mar 2016
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Creaking Surrey distie Northamber: Windows 10 ate my hamster

AIM-listed tech distie Northamber’s sales are again withering on the vine, with blame falling on Microsoft’s Windows 10 and pesky human beings who are failing to buy more computers. Sequestered in an industrial estate in deepest Surrey, Northamber has made a living from selling IT for the past 35 years but might just have seen …
Paul Kunert, 24 Mar 2016
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Web hosting and domain name merchant UK2 Group puts up for sale sign

Hosting and domain name registrar UK2 Group is using the services of an investment banker to find a buyer - the second such attempt in a year, sources have claimed. Torch Partners is running the process on behalf of owner LDC, the mid-market private equity wing of Lloyds Banking Group, which took a majority stake in the group …
Paul Kunert, 24 Mar 2016
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Troubled Acer is going to chop itself into three bite sized chunks

Management head-to-wall banging at Acer has seemingly inspired a novel idea to fix the things that are wrong the business - more restructuring. Well done, C-suite execs! Bonuses all round! The new design for Acer, if Digi Times is right, is to turn itself into a holding company to attract new investors and carve the business …
Paul Kunert, 23 Mar 2016

BT: We're killing the dabs brand. Oh and can customers re-register to buy on our site?

BT is celebrating the 10-year anniversary of its dabs.com acquisition by dumping the online gadget souk's brand and “inviting” customers to re-register their trading account. In a note to punters, the Brit telco monopoly confirmed that on 11 April it is taking the name outside to be shot, “moving forward with just our BT …
Paul Kunert, 23 Mar 2016
Toilet roll printed with fake US $100 bills

HP Inc won't shake you down for ink in 3D printer era, says CTO

Interview HP Inc is threatening to bring an era of open platforms to 3D printing, one it claims will turn the well used – and much criticised – ink toner supplies biz model on its head. So how exactly does HP expect to print money when it is actually using thermo-plastics? There's one buzz word on the tip of the CTO's tongue – …
Paul Kunert, 23 Mar 2016
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Lenovo says bye-bye to key exec amid massive spring reorganisation

Lenovo is embarking on the mother of all spring cleans after digesting the acquisitions of Motorola and IBM’s volume server biz. The group is re-arranging execs and the business units they steer amid numerous sector challenges, including the weakened state of demand for traditional PCs, tabs and smartphones, or the sales hit …
Paul Kunert, 21 Mar 2016
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Crayon still hasn't found what it's looking for... a UK CEO

Microsoft enterprise licensing specialist Crayon is back interviewing staff for the vacancy at the top of the UK organisation after its chosen candidate refused the job at the eleventh hour. The position has been empty ever since former incumbent CEO Gareth Johnson split in January, as we revealed late last year. Company …
Paul Kunert, 18 Mar 2016
Apple iPod touch

Apple's largest UK reseller Jigsaw24 is for sale

The UK’s largest Apple reseller, Jigsaw24, is for sale, multiple industry contacts have told The Channel. The Nottingham-based B2B seller has hired Deloitte to run the process, a move that comes just three years after private equity outfit NorthEdge Capital (NEC) moved in to back a roll up by the management team. In recent …
Paul Kunert, 18 Mar 2016

Quadsys Five enter 'not guilty' pleas to Crown court charges

The fraud case against five men from security reseller Quadsys will go to trial in September after they pleaded not guilty to allegations of hacking into a rival’s database to plunder customer and pricing data. The individuals charged include MD Paul Cox, owner Paul Streeter, director Alistair Barnard, account manager Steve …
Paul Kunert, 18 Mar 2016
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Power outage in Sheffield kills e-commerce at Insight UK

Insight Enterprise's UK website has been out of action for almost the entire day following an external power outage in Sheffield that took down its data centre in the same locale. The problems began just after 3.00am today, and El Chan understands that when the electricity returned, a surge killed the power protectors and took …
Paul Kunert, 17 Mar 2016
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Former Hewlett Packard Enterprise chief slips into OCSL

A couple of months after Hewlett Packard Enterprise veteran sales chief Martin Hess quit, he’s rocked up as chairman at OCSL – one of his former employer’s nearest and dearest in the channel. London-based OCSL partners only with HPE on hardware, there are not many tech suppliers in the channel that do this, and coupled with …
Paul Kunert, 17 Mar 2016

UK tech supplier Softcat shows off fuller figures

Mid-market reselling monster Softcat is still piling on the pounds after adding hundreds of new punters and squeezing more out of existing ones. But the tech supplier agrees with Chancellor Osborne - storm clouds are gathering over the UK economy. At the half-way stage of fiscal ’16 ended 31 January, turnover at the Marlow- …
Paul Kunert, 17 Mar 2016
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Microsoft throws $$$$s at resellers who snare shiny new cloudy punters

Microsoft is again chucking wads of cash at channel types that convince entirely new customers - those not familiar with outages - to sign up to SKUs of Office 365 and CRM Online Pro. Money talks - financial encouragement is a proven method to shape the behaviour of third party sellers - and under the Sprint to the Finish …
Paul Kunert, 16 Mar 2016
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Centerprise International recruits channel vet to apply commercial balm

Distribution veteran Jon Atherton has rocked up at Centerprise International as group commercial director, the company has confirmed. Founder and owner Rafi Razzak, told El Chan his new hire will oversee vendor management, commercial marketing and the specialist distribution business. “We’ve created a new post, in the past …
Paul Kunert, 16 Mar 2016
Michael Dell, photo: Dell

Private Dell mostly makes PCs – and its sales of those are down

Dell isn’t exactly in rude financial health as it marches ever closer to the $60bn+ acquisition of EMC – at least, judging by P&L accounts the privately-held Texan tech firm filed with the US SEC. The mammoth Form s-4 is supposed to paint a painfully honest picture of the businesses current position and the potential risks of …
Paul Kunert, 15 Mar 2016
A fix for the troubled Windows 10 Start menu

Hey Windows 10, weren't you supposed to help PC sales?

Very few if any ever thought Windows 10 would truly reinvigorate the PC industry, and they were right - IDC has pulled down forecasts on traditional device sales for 2016. The analyst has clipped unit expectations by a couple of per cent, claiming global notebooks and desktops shipments into channels are now on course to …
Paul Kunert, 14 Mar 2016
Pennies in a jar. Photo via Shutterstock

Staff 'fury' as penny pinching IBM offers legal minimum redundo payoffs

IBMers at risk of losing their jobs have reacted with “fury” to Big Blue’s confirmation it can only afford to pay the bare statutory minimum in their redundancy packages. Staff at IBM's Global Technology Services (GTS), Global Business Services (GBS) and UK Labs entered into a 45-day consultation period recently. Around 400 …
Paul Kunert, 14 Mar 2016

Opinion

Walking on water, image via Shutterstock

Chris Mellor

IDC stats reveal who's who in the backup appliance bearpit
Carry on Cleo

Gavin Clarke

Infamy, infamy, Amazon and Microsoft have all got it in for me!

Tim Anderson

Also signals stronger cross-platform tools, access to new markets

Features

Shouting match
Single market vs. rest of the world
hacker
Mostly it's financial crime. Here's what all the cool kids' terms mean in English
Apple logo. Pic: Blake Patterson
Plenty of bumps in the 40-year road for Mac makers
single pain of glass