Olivetti Personal Computers is planning a big push into the corporate market a year after it first set up a distribution-led channel in the UK.
The UK arm of the company, now under the new ownership of the Piedmont investment group, aims to invest about #1 million in the drive. It will recruit up to 10 ?facilitators?, which will drum up business in the corporate market and pass on leads to the company?s dealer channel.
Paul Mahoney, northern European general manager for Olivetti Personal Computers, said: ?We don?t have much penetration in the corporate market at the moment. Traditionally this has been the market for Olsy Systems" (the recently renamed Olivetti Systems Division, still owned by the original parent). He continued: "Our aim is for 70 per cent of our total business to come from the professional market and 30 per cent from the consumer market in 1997.?
Meanwhile the company?s Italian arm is preparing to do battle with the Italian unions over job cuts, as sale of the company to Piedmont nears finalisation.
Despite talk of "some inevitable streamlining" from Bernhard Auer, chief executive of Olivetti PC, Mahoney remains positive that the worst of the restructuring is in the past for Olivetti in the UK. "Since January we have been slowly expanding,? he said. ?Our worst cutbacks came last year when we restructured the channel.?
According to Paul Evans, UK product marketing manager, the company has experienced 336 per cent growth in notebooks, 100 per cent growth in server products and 20 per cent growth in desktops since it revamped its UK channel strategy a year ago.
?This year we are going to lead our marketing strategy on servers,? he said. ?We haven?t spent enough time boosting our server line.?
The company is also looking to recruit a sixth distributor for its desktop, server and notebook lines.
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