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Ex-Insight director Griffiths moves to CMS Distribution

Former Insight EMEA director Justin Griffiths has rocked up at ambitious tech supplier CMS Distribution. Griffiths almost seemed part of the fixtures and fittings at Insight - he worked at the business in various roles for more than a decade - but exited late last year. He confirmed on LinkedIn that he has started at CMS as …
Paul Kunert, 26 Mar 2015

How many Win 10 PCs were in distribution the week before launch?

In the week leading up to the launch of Windows 10 there were zero PCs pre-installed with the new operating system sat in a warehouse awaiting a new home. Not one. For past releases of Microsoft OSs at least 20 per cent of computers at wholesalers came loaded with the software, but times have changed. Context Research – which …
Paul Kunert, 06 Aug 2015

CMS Distribution bags industry big hitter for sales assault

CMS Distribution has pulled in tech vendor veteran Andy Bass to run its sales and marketing function and help plot the course to more than double the business over the next half a decade. The former Toshiba PC and TV exec veep for Europe split from the company at the start of ’14, rocking up in a senior role at sales performance …
Paul Kunert, 13 Oct 2014

CMS Distribution warehouse BORG underway

CMS Distribution says it is working to minimise any impact of the warehouse consolidation taking place this summer. The storage, networking and infrastructure wholesaler currently operates two depots – one in North West London and one in Harrogate – but will now move to a single site in Castleford, West Yorkshire. In a note …
Paul Kunert, 19 Jun 2014

Cisco's Hens to sink teeth into worldwide distribution

Cisco has rejigged the chairs at its top table, with exec Julie Hens being made veep of worldwide distribution. The move was confirmed by Edison Peres, senior veep of worldwide channels, in a blog post yesterday, weeks after previous distie boss Scott Brown was made chief of Asia Pacific, Japan and Greater China. The …
Paul Kunert, 04 Jul 2013

CMS Distribution swallows Interactive Ideas

Specialist storage and CE wholesaler CMS Distribution has hoovered up open source distie Interactive Ideas for an undisclosed sum. The buy of London-based Interactive adds vendors including RedHat, NetIQ and Solar Winds. "There is no vendor cross over," said Frank Salmon, CEO at CMS. "The future of storage is open architecture …
Paul Kunert, 05 Nov 2013
Fluffy grey ragdoll cat relaxes next to laptop.

Distribution of cream among EMC executive fat cats revealed

Fancy finding out how much EMC fat cats earn? Read on. Total compensation – meaning share options, salary and bonuses – for the top execs at EMC Information Infrastructure (EMC II) in 2014 looked like this: Joe Tucci (EMC Chairman & CEO) – $11,203,318 David Goulden (EMC II CEO) – $10,531,257 Howard Elias (President & COO …
Chris Mellor, 23 Mar 2015

Another IBMer rolls into distribution

Arrow ECS has lured veteran IBM man Ian Jeffs to run its Big Blue franchise in the UK, say our chatty sources. This follows the exit of previous incumbent Allister Richardson who, according to his LinkedIn and Google + account, has since become EMEA boss at iSys Capital Technologies. Jeffs will use his near 20 years experience …
Paul Kunert, 12 Aug 2013
Stained glass angels

Gods of tech distribution smile on Blighty in Q1

Distributors in almost half of the countries across Western Europe failed to register sales growth during Q1 but those with ops in Blighty were not among them. Sales out data from Context reveals UK market revenues climbed 12.4 per cent in the three months to €2.5bn, making it the largest sector in the region for the past four …
Paul Kunert, 06 May 2014

Juniper taps former HP man to sort out distribution matrix

Juniper Networks has lured Will Hamber to head up its fragmented distribution business across EMEA. Hamber is moving across from Edge-Core Networks, where he was GM for Europe and Africa from June last year, prior to that he held various management roles at HP, latterly as channel sales director for networking. He will link up …
Paul Kunert, 16 May 2012

Commtech Distribution to set up UK beachhead

Channel vet Mark Walker is to front Irish wholesaler Commtech Distribution's expansion into the UK. Walker was made redundant by Azlan, enterprise arm of broadline distie Computer 2000 in November as part of a structural overhaul, which also saw the exit of marketing director Simon Welch and the entire Avaya business unit. A …
Paul Kunert, 08 Mar 2012

Northamber: Windows 10 killed our sales momentum

It is an end of an era for the tech channel as Northamber chairman David Philips – the godfather of distribution – confirmed he is stepping back from operations and is seeking a new leader of the company. The colourful veteran confirmed today he is “closing in on the age of 71, so it is clearly time I commence the process to …
Paul Kunert, 23 Oct 2015

Lenovo goes Bass fishing, catches new channel boss

Lenovo has pulled Andy Bass back into vendor land to run its UK and Ireland channel and small business team following the industry veteran’s brief spell at CMS Distribution. The company told us Bass is "joining Lenovo as our new director of Channel & SMB". He starts on 1 September but the organisation said it had no further …
Paul Kunert, 20 Aug 2015

Pure Storage shoves channel growth ahead of IPO dream bid

All-flash array start-up and IPO’er-in-waiting (we think) Pure Storage has got itself a new channel programme and two channel-focused exec hires, to get partners selling more tier-1 storage replacing Pure product. It is implementing a two-tier pan-regional distribution model, an expanded technology alliance ecosystem for …
Chris Mellor, 16 Apr 2015

Lenovo waves bye-bye to UK channel director Phelps

Lenovo has told us that long-standing Brit channel director Darren Phelps has quit the organisation, denying claims from sources that he was given the old heave-ho. “Effective immediately, Darren Phelps, UK and Ireland channel director has decided to move on from his role at Lenovo to pursue new opportunities,” a spokesman …
Paul Kunert, 17 Jun 2015

Tech disties: What the HELL happened to our sales growth in Q1?

Tech disties’ sales growth across Europe almost halved in Q1 as the XP migration factor ran out of steam, PC business dwindled and weaker demand for Apple slabs and IBM big iron came to bear. The quarterly figures – based on sales-out data from the suppliers – collated by Context’s SalesWatch tracker, indicate turnover from the …
Paul Kunert, 11 May 2015

SCH Group prepares for life after distribution

Channel giant Specialist Computer Holdings (SCH) has released a financial statement for fiscal 2012 showing double-digit gains in turnover and operating profits for the year ended 30 March. This is the last set of full year results the group, which houses reseller-cum-integrator SCC and wholesaling biz Specialist Distribution …
Paul Kunert, 03 Oct 2012

Blighty tablet sales plunge 31 per cent in saturated market

The free fall descent of the tablet distribution market accelerated for the second quarter of 2015, with channel fondleslab sales plunging by 22 per cent to 2.3 million across Western Europe. Sales in the UK nosedived by 31 per cent to 410,100 units, according to the quarterly research on distribution sales compiled by analyst …
Kat Hall, 28 Jul 2015

Dell PCs to be never knowingly undersold by John Lewis this Chrimbo

Dell is to go head-to-head with Apple, HP and Lenovo for the affections of computer-seeking shoppers this Christmas - the XPS range will be never knowingly undersold to the middle classes by John Lewis. Sarah Shields, exec director and UK GM for channel and distribution claimed Dell could not afford to ignore the retail …
Paul Kunert, 20 Nov 2015

HP fills those big old shoes vacated by Sue Barsamian

Running HP’s global enterprise channel is a big job but someone’s got to do it. That someone is Kerry Bailey, currently a senior exec in the firm’s cloud division. As revealed by us last month, Sue Barsamian is taking control of the enterprise security product unit, reporting to HP Software bigwig Robert Youngjohns. In an …
Paul Kunert, 02 Oct 2015

Notebooks drag PC sales out the toilet, fondleslabs still falling

The PC market bounced back in the first quarter of 2015, mainly thanks to a big uplift in notebook sales. According to research from tech distribution sales data compiled by Context, the market rose by seven per cent on the year. Notebook sales were up 26 per cent to 644,304, while desktop sales remained flat at 237,700, and …
Kat Hall, 01 Apr 2015

All change at the top of HP's enterprise biz

A change at the top of HP’s enterprise distie team across both European and UK ops may well help solve the disconnect that occurred when a regionally drafted strategy was executed locally. At least that's the hope of some distributors, who want to see the strategic priorities of the business unit heads at country level match …
Paul Kunert, 30 Oct 2014
Windows Store For Business

Signups start at 'Windows Store for Business'

Microsoft's wanted an enterprise app store for ages, but hasn't been able to get one going because one the many messes in Windows 8.x was “side-loading”, a strange Microsoft's method for allowing businesses to install Windows apps en masse to their PC fleets. Now it looks like Redmond's revving a replacement, as a new Windows …
Simon Sharwood, 05 Nov 2015

IT distribution titan Tech Data to gobble UK's SDG for $350m

Technology products distributor Tech Data (TD) has swallowed Specialist Distribution Group (SDG) for $350m (£220.3m) in a deal that is subject to regulatory approval from the EU's competition authorities. As revealed by The Channel some months back, UK Midlands-based Specialist Computer Holdings (SCH), SDG's parent, was …
Paul Kunert, 05 Sep 2012
A humpback whale shows its open mouth as it breaches the surface of the sea.

Cloud will kill tech sales jobs

Comment On-premises IT brings tech sales jobs in its wake. Cloud IT kills them. That's the thinking of a territory account manager in a storage IT startup. The thought process starts: "There is probably some statistic where, for every IT deal that goes to the cloud, there are 20 traditional tech sales jobs that are eliminated." How …
Chris Mellor, 09 Nov 2015

AMD appoints Belenkiy as new EMEA channel boss

AMD has bid farewell to EMEA channel chief Fiona Faulkner, who has left for “personal reasons”. We understand that Faulkner’s husband is suffering from the advanced stages of leukaemia and she is taking time out to help care for him – we wish her all the best. The chip and graphics card vendor confirmed that “with immediate …
Paul Kunert, 15 Sep 2015

Tax bill could kibosh Dell-EMC deal

Dell could be landed with a $9bn tax bill for buying EMC - a deal-breaker. That’s what Dell insiders are telling the Silicon Valley publication Re/Code. At the heart of their concern is how the Internal Revenue Service will treat the tracking stock in VMware, an EMC subsidiary, that Dell plans to issue to help fund the …
Drew Cullen, 11 Nov 2015

Is Microsoft veteran Edward Hyde heading off to Commvault?

Microsoft veteran Edward Hyde is to leave the organisation after 20 years spent in the big slammer at the company, The Channel can reveal. Hyde joined as distribution account manager in 1995 and subsequently held senior sales positions covering the public sector and enterprise licensing partners customers. Most recently – …
Paul Kunert, 07 Aug 2015

IBM's SoftLayer cloud beats AWS, Azure ... at spreading spam

IBM's US$2 billion acquisition SoftLayer is the world's largest source of spam, according to email vanguards Cloudmark and Spamhaus. Big Blue acquired the cloud company in June 2013 and since then net forums have been filled with chatter about the amount of cyber-chaff the Dallas-centred outfit's users are spewing. Spam …
Darren Pauli, 23 Oct 2015

Systemax: Shuttering our North America Tech Group may cost $55m

Systemax has gone public with the cost of dotting the Is and crossing the Ts in the closure of its remaining North America Technology Group (NATG), and it's going to be pricey. Very pricey. The ailing reseller revealed last week that US dealer PCM has offered $14m to pick up certain assets, including the right to hire roughly …
Paul Kunert, 24 Nov 2015
HockeyApp + Microsoft logos

Microsoft shells out the pucks for analytics firm HockeyApp

Microsoft has acquired HockeyApp, a service for testing and analysing apps in development for iOS, Android, Windows Phone and Mac OS, for an undisclosed amount. The Stuttgart-based team launched HockeyApp in 2011. Using the service, developers can deploy preview apps to testers, get feedback, analyse crash reports, and view …
Tim Anderson, 11 Dec 2014

'Cilla Black introduced me to my wife on Blind Date': Channel man's heartwarming story

The managing director of an IT distribution outfit who met his wife 28 years ago on Blind Date has paid tribute to the show's host Cilla Black, who passed away yesterday. Lorra lorra love Alex Tatham – MD of Westcoast Limited – and his wife Sue were the first couple to get married after appearing on the show, which ran from …
Kat Hall, 03 Aug 2015

And the buggiest OS provider award goes to ... APPLE?

Apple's operating systems and Linux racked up more vulnerability reports than Windows during 2014, according to research from security outfit GFI. Cupertino's OS X and iOS platforms topped the 2014 bug charts with 147 and 127 holes disclosed in each, nudging out the Linux Kernel with 119 flagged flaws, the National Vulnerability …
Darren Pauli, 26 Feb 2015
No Sale

Quantum not buying Dot Hill. Takes the OEM, master disti path instead

Contradicting rumours we heard that it was buying Dot Hill, storage biz Quantum, already a Dot Hill OEM, is taking on master channel distribution rights for the network array maker's products. Dot Hill manufactures storage systems for OEM customers such as Quantum and others, and has a focus on improving array performance with …
Chris Mellor, 14 Apr 2015

Arrow ECS UK sales director Johnny Ellis set to exit building

Distie veteran and colourful channel figure Johnny Ellis is to exit the UK and lreland sales director’s office at Arrow ECS with the intent of ploughing his furrow in another area of the industry. Ellis has been in tech distribution for more than two decades: he set up Open Computing before it was sold to PSL, which was then …
Paul Kunert, 28 Oct 2014

Systemax offloads North America problem child to PCM for $14m

Ailing tech supplier Systemax looks to have dealt with the corporation’s problem child – it is selling “certain assets” of the North American Technology Group (NATG) to PCM for $14m and will shutter the rest. The once mighty reseller has reported steep losses and falling sales this year; it has already closed 31 retail stores …
Paul Kunert, 19 Nov 2015

Dell slips ring on distie Tech Data

Tech Data and its commercial siblings are now fully tooled up with Dell kit and software, and are looking to get handy. The pair kicked off an inaugural distie deal in Britain last month that covered PCs - and a full blown agreement for servers and storage at Tech Data subsidiary Azlan is now also live. The tie-up between the …
Paul Kunert, 02 Jun 2015
management strategy1

Wick Hill decides the, er, Price is right

Channel veteran Tony Price has landed as UK sales director at specialist security distie Wick Hill. Price is a former boss at reseller WStore and has worked in various levels across distribution at now defunct CHS Electronics and second user wholesaler Chiltern IT. “We’ve got a significant expectation of increased sales in …
Paul Kunert, 16 Jul 2015
Cloudy sky

Juniper hardware and software to sleep in separate beds

Juniper has decided to embrace the spirit of the white box, by loosening the bonds between Juniper hardware and its Junos software. It's a change that works both ways, as the company's corporate VP for development and innovations Denise Shiffman told The Register: both Junos and Juniper hardware will be available as discrete …
scissors cut cable

Half of Windows Server 2003 fans will miss July's security cut-off

More than half of companies are now expected to miss the deadline to quit Windows Server 2003 before Microsoft’s 14 July end-of-extended-support cut-off point. Many will seek security cover through Microsoft Custom Support Agreements (CSAs) charged at $600 per server, or reckon on having in place their own plans for coping. …
Gavin Clarke, 30 Jun 2015

How many pre-loaded Win 10 PCs did disties have 7 days after release?

No PCs pre-loaded with Windows 10 made their way into distributors’ warehouses in the week before launch of the OS – but by golly, they did in seven days after the 'big event'. Venerable number cruncher Context reckons a whopping 150 machines were in distribution a week after launch. The firm gets its data direct from European …
Paul Kunert, 14 Aug 2015
management strategy1

Botham bowls into Microsoft as latest UK distie overlord

Microsoft is about to open the doors to a new distribution boss after dipping into the ranks at data management software player Commvault to poach EMEA VAD manager Marc Botham. This concludes the desk chair shifting aboard the good ship Microsoft that started when company veteran Clare Barclay moved from SMB director to channel …
Paul Kunert, 20 Jan 2014
retro cartoon featuring two men fighting against cloud backdrop

Fujitsu channel man prepares for war on enterprise rivals

Fujitsu UK’s latest channel czar, Kevin Matthews, has promised tighter account management as he struggles to force his way into corporate clients dominated by enterprise rivals. The former HP enterprise man was last month given control of both the channel and the internal direct sales force, following a year of declining sales …
Paul Kunert, 20 Nov 2015

Blighty's oldest tech distie feels a little punchy again

Death, taxes and Northamber’s continued sales slide once seemed three certainties in life, but no more – the UK’s oldest tech distie has grown for the first time in years and isn't losing nearly as much cash. It could well be that the new management strategy, led by commercial director Alex Phillips, son of chairman David, is …
Paul Kunert, 12 Mar 2015

Guess who SAP's picked for UK boss? Yep, it's a distie man

Distribution isn’t typically the first port of call for enterprise software vendors looking to recruit execs, but SAP has broken the mould by tapping up the chief operations man at DCC Exertis to head up its UK and Ireland biz. Cormac Watter, COO at the tech arm of Irish conglomerate DCC — which owns Exertis (formerly trading as …
Paul Kunert, 08 Oct 2014

EMC UK channel overlord Poole exits role but not company

Ten months into Russell Poole’s chairmanship of EMC’s Brit channel and he trekking into Europe to take on a more lofty role in the organisation. Poole replaced Terry Beale last August as the local channel chief, adding the reseller and distribution badges on his lapel to existing service provider and public sector …
Paul Kunert, 18 May 2015

Rigby clan jumps into private equity game

Industry veteran Paul Ecclestone is to head up a private equity subsidiary for Rigby Group that is seeking small but perfectly formed companies in perceived hot areas of tech. The exec returned to the Midlands-based biz dynasty in early April, having previously transferred with Specialist Distribution Group when it was acquired …
Paul Kunert, 02 Jul 2015

Phoenix IT Group: we hired 20 bods for config/ distie centre

What Phoenix IT Group giveth with one hand it taketh with another: the services group is hiring 20 bods to man a new config centre, the same number it is waving goodbye to this month in the repairs biz. The 15k sq ft config and distribution centre based in Farnborough cost £500k to set up and it will combine storage and staging …
Paul Kunert, 30 Mar 2015

Where will you place your vendor bets in 2015?

There was plenty to keep Europe’s IT channel busy over the past few months, and the rest of this year could be just as turbulent. By the end of 2014, the shakeout of major strategic changes from HP, Dell and Symantec were yet to be felt. But as 2015 progresses, this is likely to change, so keeping a close eye on developments is …
Bang by Guian Bolisay

Invicta IT to vendors: 'Put us in the bucket... of ones to watch'

Reseller minnow Invicta IT has hired a raft of heavy-hitting - and no doubt expensive - sales account managers from Insight Enterprises as it eyes up moving into the bigger leagues. The Slough-based HP, Cisco and NetApp seller recruited ex-Insight corporate sales director Gary Remmington as sales director on 1 April and he in …
Paul Kunert, 17 Sep 2015


George Osborne, photo: HM Treasury
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Chris Mellor

The SAN growth glory days are well and truly over, so where next?

Tom Whipp

Insurance industry insider tells all
Crypto fingers


Michael Dell. Pic by Joi Ito
Cool Texas dude is just your average billionaire
The Seeing Eye by Valerie Everett, Flickr, CC2.0
Follow the money – or, at least, our projections
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