The IT Partners are facing many problems in their business and they would like the MNCs to resolve these problems urgently. Much time has already been lost during lockdown and the MNCs need to pay attention to these problems and help the Partners, so that their business doesn’t suffer anymore.
Two most prominent problems are the issue of counterfeit products circulating in the market at lower price, which cut the sale of genuine MNCs products; and the issue of shortage of stocks at the Partners’ end. They feel they have been left high and dry while the MNCs have supplied the stocks to the online commerce websites.
CMDA brought to notice the issue of counterfeit printer toners, cartridges and other accessories to HP. Last year, FAIITA Had also taken up this issue with HP. HP has promptly responded to these steps and issued a circular highlighting their anti-counterfeit programme.
“We have received positive feedback on the ‘Science of Printing’ workshops conducted for partners by HP. These workshops help distributors and resellers to identify counterfeits. In these workshops HP personnel also clarified several doubts and answered questions regarding the way counterfeits are sold and how to check this menace. CMDA will do everything in its capacity to cooperate with HP to check the menace of counterfeit cartridges being sold in the market.
–Puneet Singhal, President, CMDA, Delhi
“Not only HP, but most of OEM consumable products’ fake versions are available, same as with Microsoft. We all know selling fake is crime and no one supports the same. It is the responsibility of any MNC to counter fake products. FAIITA has had long discussions with HP in August last year, where representative of CMDA were present and HP had told us what efforts they are making. However, presence of fake is still strong and it shows actions taken by brand are not adequate. There was a meeting hosted by MAIT with Amazon on this subject and Amazon displayed there a process by which any OEM can place obstruction on the sale of fake material on Amazon, but still fake toners of all brands are sold on Amazon which clearly shows that measures taken till now are inadequate and more are needed.”
–Devesh Rastogi, Senior VP, FAIITA
HP has reacted to such complaints and has issued a statement saying they are very concerned about the counterfeits in the market as it adversely affects their business. HP has already conducted extensive training the T1 personnel about how to identify counterfeit cartridges and how to bring them under the control of law. In the current phase, starting from Sep 2020-Jan 2021, HP has started training T1 distributors and T3 resellers in this regard.
Recently, HP also circulated a press note announcing the results of its Anti-Counterfeiting and Fraud (ACF) Programme, that is aimed at creating awareness on the scale and severity of the fraudulent printing supplies market in India. The HP ACF program helps combat the production, distribution and sale of counterfeit ink and toner printing supplies in the region.
The issue of shortage of supplies at the Partners end is serious. Several Partners have complained that they don’t have enough supplies to meet the high demand they are getting from the customers. There is an immediate need on the part of the MNCs to look into this.
“Companies/Brands/National Distributors/Regional Distributors say they don’t have material. They bundle non-selling items with high selling (volume) items. Online shopping apps are flooded with offers, lowest prices etc. on laptops, mobiles, consumer durables, Printers, watches. This problem gets repeated every year during this festive period. When will our voice be heard and taken care of?
*When we T3/T4 partners urge brands for branding, marketing activities & support, we are told that they don’t have required funds right now. But for online portals, they arrange all the required funds to market their products and brand. Are we being taken for a ride?
We are just demo stores, enquiry centres and price quoters for brands, companies, ND & RD. Brick and Mortar stores (like ours) in India are being used to showcase respective brand products only. Our voice doesn’t get heard, issues are not resolved and we are always taken for a ride by the MNCs.
It’s time to change our business strategy. If they want to sell online, then why are they using us?
–All the members of Jodhpur Computer Dealers Association
“During lockdown when the Online deliveries could not happen, all vendors coerced the Channel and conducted their businesses. Even the Channels reciprocated as they also had to survive the pandemic. Now that the lockdown rules have been relaxed and online deliveries are happening all brands have diverted their stocks to the online portal businesses especially for the festival sale boom. The Channel is left high and dry without stocks.”
–C. P. Praveen, Managing Partner, Vasavi Computer Academy, Vellore
It seems that the supplies are in shortage only in resellers’ segment, as the online commerce has no shortage. There is a need for the MNCs to decide whether they want the physical retail to continue and if yes, then what system they should implement. Perhaps helping the Partners to go onboard the E-commerce system along with managing physical retail will help, so that the Partners can benefit from both the systems.