Rich Marsden, director of VIP Computers, explains what we can expect from the distributor at this year’s PCR Boot Camp conference and expo.
The event, held at the Brewery in London on Wednesday May 21st, is free to attend for retailers and resellers – to secure your place register here today.
In your opinion, what’s the most important thing for retailers and resellers to bear in mind when dealing with customers?
Without doubt, it’s great service. If resellers offer great service then pricing, although important in the eyes of the consumer, becomes secondary. Service is a fantastic differentiator and can be key in making you stand apart from your competitors, which is why we place so much value in our strapline – ‘Delivering Value in Distribution’.
What products and services will you be promoting at Boot Camp this year?
This year we will be focussing on raising awareness of the VIP Club and showcasing all it has to offer. As a free-to-join club with lots of great benefits we will be offering a ‘Boot-Camp’ exclusive incentive for those who choose to sign-up on the day. We will also be bringing further details about Evolution 3 which is set for Friday September 19th 2014, so come and speak to us on our stand to find out more.
What do you think will be the next big thing in tech?
Wearable tech is going to be the standout technology this year. The Razer Nabu in particular will be a big product for VIP in Q4.
If you could wave a magic wand, what would you change about the channel?
Eliminating unnecessary price erosion in the channel would be the change I’d make. Maintaining focus on offering great service eliminates the need to continually sacrifice price. In turn this helps maintain margin throughout the channel which keeps everyone happy.
What is your proudest moment as a company?
The past 12 months have seen the introduction of a few new initiatives that we are particularly proud of. We have selected a local charity, St. Rocco’s Hospice, as our designated charity for 2014 and we are looking to raise £20,000. In addition, we have introduced an apprenticeship scheme which has opened up employment opportunities to the local community. I also have to mention the VIP Club, this is our in house programme for independent retailers offering a range of benefits exclusively to Indies, the membership uptake has been very strong and our customers are now starting to get real value out of being a member.
What distinguishes you from your competitors?
VIP has been committed to the PC market for 23 years and today that commitment is as strong as ever.
What are you key brands/lines you carry?
Our product portfolio is one of the strongest in the industry and we are the UK’s largest independent IT distributor of PC components and peripherals. We have access to some big PC and gaming brands and are the 2014 PCR ‘PC Gaming & Hardware Distributor of the Year’.
What gadget can’t you live without?
As it’s really the only gadget I own I would have to say my smartphone.
What are you most looking forward to at PCR Boot Camp?
Events like PCR Boot Camp are all about having the opportunity to engage with our customers. Not only is it a fantastic way for us to tell everyone what we are doing, it also allows us to listen to our customers to understand what they want to see from their distributor.