Storm on the horizon

In my opinion, the next six to 12 months are going to be sheer hell in the UK marketplace, as we see the effects of the long overdue reduction in big government.
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The much talked about double dip recession seems ever more likely, and as the Conservative/Liberal Democrat Government implements spending cuts there will be increased unemployment and a smaller public sector, not only in employment terms, but also in capital expenditure, including ICT.

In the long term, this has to be a good thing; we as a nation cannot go on spending money that we simply don’t have. However, in the short term it means the bigger players in our industry will have to replace lost public sector business with more corporate and SME/SMB business, putting even more pressure on independent retailers in terms of hardware and software sales.


Indies must focus on repairs and upgrades, together with managed services within their local communities, as these are the sectors the big players cannot reach in a costeffective way. Levels of service will be paramount if indies are to see off further incursions into the four million small businesses they look after throughout the UK.

Indies lost the battle for hardware sales long ago to the supermarkets, sheds and e-tailers, and anyone who argues otherwise is wrong. The indie can, however, still win in niche, lower volume product areas that require a level of technical sales expertise. This is an area Brigantia intends to concentrate on.

Given the prevailing economic conditions, we have spent the last 12 months developing frontline schemes to help our members capitalise on opportunities and protect local consumer, SOHO and SMB market share.


Retailers now fix more notebooks, netbooks and games consoles than ever before, in addition to their traditional PC, server and printer repair and upgrade businesses. Notebook repair training, spare-parts sourcing and more complicated third-party repair services are now well-established.

Remote support has also proved very popular, with many of our members currently rolling out services to their end users through our various discount schemes. Remote back-up and business continuity have also proved growth areas, along with internet services. VoIP also looks to be an area of massive potential for indies.


All about the training

My column last month concerning the way ahead for the indie channel seems to have struck a chord with a great many independents.

Welcome to PCR

I've aired my opinion that in such a fast moving industry, adaptation and evolution are the best tools retailers have. Well, the same rule applies to us as well.

Keep on dealing

A look back through Keith Warburton?s not-so rose-tinted memories of the marketplace reveals that while big brands may come and go, good resellers tend to stick around...

The way ahead for the indie channel

I have written before in this column about how important I believe it is for independent computer solution providers to turn their ?on the job? knowledge into industry recognised certifications. This becomes particularly relevant when the potential customer is a local or national government department or other government funded organisation.


PC Retail Awards 08 - Frontline Awards

The lowdown on the companies battling it out for a prestigious PC Retail award - High Street Independent ? High Street Multiple ? Online Retailer ? Value Added Reseller ? Best Technical Support

Radio free Europe

My mention of the EMC regulations a couple of months ago elicited a response claiming that interference from what is variously known as Power Line Technology/ Power Line/ Communications/ Power Line Telecommunications equipment (let?s call it PLT) was a widespread problem that was only going to get bigger, and was a major breach of the EMC regulations.

The end of an era

Time for a quick recap of the story so far. In June 2009, the merger of the Mac Technology Association and the PCA was announced and by September the effective combining of the two organisations was complete in all but one aspect ? our websites. There was simply too much Mac-channel specific information on the MTA website to allow us to turn it off.



The last 12 months have seen renewed effort from tech heavyweight Intel to retake the CPU performance crown from AMD. Scott Bicheno spoke to Intel director Steve Shakespeare to find out if this vigour has achieved the desired results...