An unholy row has broken out between IBM and Compaq, following comments made by the chief executive of channel giant Computacenter at a reseller conference in Lisbon last weekend.
Mike Norris, head of the large reseller, told the freshly appointed general manager of IBM PC Co's Emea region, Doug LeGrande, that his company had the greatest belief in the IBM channel - to the consternation of Compaq.
Norris said: ?We believe you. You are by far the most committed to the channel and we appreciate it. We?re entirely committed to the IBM authorised assembly programme. For a large reseller, it?s the way to go.?
But that provoked an outburst from Peter Blampied, commercial marketing manager at Compaq UK. He said: ?IBM has been flushed down the toilet by Compaq over the last few years. We?re number one in the corporate sector and we have over a third of the corporate market in the UK.?
Both Compaq and IBM use Computacenter to resell their products but Blampied said: ?Compaq is extremely committed, if not the most committed to the channel. We want to attack the direct model.?
He said Compaq had very clearly defined the market. ?We see opportunities differently from other vendors,? he said.
Although Computacenter had been given the contract to push through Compaq's Expresso project for selling to small businesses via the Web, that did not alter its commitment to the channel at all, he added.
Norris was not available for comment at press time.
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