Compaq has confirmed that it has dropped almost all of its 39 distributors in a move designed to "streamline" its distribution model.
Tech Data, Ingram Micro, Inacom and Merisel are the four North American Distributors chosen for Compaq's exclusive Distributor Alliance Program which will begin in August this year.
Compaq currently distributes its build to order commercial business desktop, portable and server products in the region through 39 different distributors with a total of more than 100 stocking locations.
According to Compaq, the consolidation to four distributors, which will decrease the number of Compaq distribution sites by almost 90 per cent, will enable Compaq resellers to receive significantly better availability and more predictable delivery of products while reducing overall inventory levels and driving out inefficiencies in the supply chain.
Mike Pocock, vice president, channel sales, North America for Compaq commented: "The Distributor Alliance Program structure will provide a more efficient approach to supplying products to the channel."
One casualty of the announcement is Pinacor, a subsidiary of US company MicroAge. The company said today that following Compaq's decision to ditch all but four of its US distributors, it will transition away from stocking Compaq's full line of technology products to resellers, but will procure products not stocked by Pinacor through Compaq's logistics partners.
The company said that although it did not expect significant changes to product availability, the change in its distribution relationship with Compaq could affect the company's net income and revenue, although the extent of the impact could not be determined at present.
Pinacor has stocked Compaq products for the last 16 years.
Microage chairman and chief executive Jeffrey McKeever commented: "Pinacor and Compaq have had a relationship extending many years. However, as the industry changes we must all adapt to a new paradigm and develop business practices accordingly. This move provides both Pinacor and Compaq with the ability to streamline operations. "
However, he added: "At this point in time, we can't determine the impact, if any, on Microage on a consolidated basis."
Earlier today Compaq said that the announcement only related to North America and that no similar move was planned for Europe for the time being.
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