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gwalters

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Things ain't what they use to be...I was reading Ed's post over at the Imaging Industry News site about "Hybrid Dealers".

Ed states, "...No longer is it acceptable for the dealer to only provide the stellar technical insight of an IT VAR or Reseller, or conversely, only the stellar service and traditional click charge based financing options of the copier dealer. Now the end user expects the dealer to be able to provide the best of both worlds, the technical excellence of an IT reseller and the service excellence of a copier dealer..."

Ed and his group are right on with this observation - I see the need everyday; I see the prospect changing too.

I would venture a guess that larger companies are experiencing this change and the need for a Hybrid Dealer a Partner. Your typical small company does not have an IT and Facilities staff - sometimes, one person will fill both requirements. And this is why most smaller companies have embraced the MFP and it's full function.

On the "dealer" side, I have been in the presence of the owners of successful Copier Dealers - they do not see "MPS" as a major interest from their customers. Interesting. They see MPS programs as another "arrow in the quiver" - arrows to be shot at the prospect. (Another interesting metaphor/cliche.) In the same light as duplexing, color, or scan to file. Just another "add".

"Hybrid" - according to Dictionary.com, "... anything derived from heterogeneous sources, or composed of elements of different or incongruous kinds: a hybrid of the academic and business worlds..."

So, yes, I would agree that a VAR/Dealer/Reseller "composed of elements of different or incrongruous kinds" is a reasonable, Darwinian, expectation. The result would be an entity that takes "the best of both worlds" - CPC and IT knowledge.

My question is, "Can today's dealer change on its own or will the Hybrid be grown from the ground up?"

Time will tell - meanwhile, I need to take my computer in to the nearest Inacomp, ComputerLand, MicroAge - oh wait...they all changed their name to Best Buy, didn't they?

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Greg Walters
TheDeathOfTheCopier
greg@thedeathofthecopier.com
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