Westcon has named Antony Byford as its new managing director in the UK and Ireland.
The newly created position is part of Westcon’s cunning plan to increase the levels of support it can offer resellers.
Byford has worked at Computacenter, Tech Data and Zyxel and held channel development roles at Stratus and Highlight.
Reporting to Rene Klein, svp of Westcon Europe, Byford will increase the support that UK and Irish partners can expect to get from the distributor.
Klein said: “Antony brings a fresh perspective to a new chapter in the evolution of our Westcon business. He has a great record in creating opportunities for growth and development, he understands the channel landscape, and knows how to build and lead high-performing teams. His experience, drive, and talents are the ideal fit for us as we evolve our services in the coming year and leverage the opportunities our recent investments in systems present. Partners can look forward to even greater levels of support and value from Westcon.”
Byford said: “We have one of the strongest, solutions-oriented and service driven propositions in distribution that is only going to get stronger. As we create new opportunities through innovation in our services, our delivery capabilities and technology eco-systems we can all develop, grow and profit.
“Couple this with such a talented, service committed team, and we’re in great shape to forge ahead, deliver even more for more partners, and ensure Westcon remains the pinnacle of innovation and added-value in distribution.”
Juniper Networks will end its relationship with Westcon as an EMEA-wide distributor in 2018.
The networking and security vendor said that signing a pan-EMEA deal with Nuvias in September prompted a distribution review. After January 2018, Westcon will look after Germany Spain, and Holland.
EMEA channel chief Kristian Kerr announced that Juniper Networks signed an EMEA-wide contract with a new distributor, Nuvias, in September 2017.
“As part of this new distribution landscape, from January 2018 Westcon will continue to represent Juniper, specifically in Germany, Spain and the Netherlands. Juniper will continue to work diligently with our distribution landscape to maintain full focus on our solution portfolio and to build market growth together”, he said.
The move is a bit of a shock as Westcon has been an EMEA-wide distributor of Juniper for the best part of nine years.
Juniper was worried that it might become over-distributed after signing a pan-EMEA deal with value-added security firm Nuvias in September, and a contract with UK-based broadliner Westcoast in February.
2017 has been a bad year for Westcon. Its owner Datatec issued a profit warning in May after it admitted its earnings per share for fiscal 2017 would fall by 66 percent. Westcon’s EMEA business saw sales falling by 30 percent while global sales declined by seven percent.
It was kicked in the bottom line with an SAP roll out that went live in November 2016 and created a mess which its parent company has attributed towards its lacklustre performance.
Westcon’s Americas operations, and 10 per cent of its EMEA and APAC business, were flogged to US distributor Synnex at the start of September for $800 million.
California-based Synnex has elbowed its way into the European channel with a deal for Westcon-Comstor.
Under the deal, Synnex is taking a 10 percent stake in Westcon’s international operations only, at least initially. Synnex has reserved the right to double its stake in Westcon International to 20 percent.
It also has first refusal on making an offer to acquire it in its entirety should Datatec ever look to sell the remainder of the business.
Synnex is writing a cheque for $30 million for its 10 percent stake in the international business. This is peanuts compared to the $800 million it is paying to buy Westcon’s much smaller North and Latin American arm outright.
What it all means is that Synnex has its feet under the table for any deal involving the EMEA and APAC business in the future.
In its fiscal 2016, Synnex hit revenues of $14.06 billion, with $12.49 billion of that coming from distribution activities, and $1.59 billion coming from its BPO business. The Westcon deal will bring in another $2 billion of revenues.
Synnex is better known as Microsoft distributors in the States, and the move could herald a real threat to Ingram and Tech Data.
Unified comms VAR Westcon has been given the sole distributor rights for the newly launched ACS Express from Active Communications.
ACS Express crosses Microsoft’s Lync 2013 Server with AudioCodes Mediant 800 voice gateway on a single appliance.
It can manage PSTN or ISDN, analogue extensions and SIP connectivity with ESBC functionality, and simplifies the deployment and management of Microsoft Lync Unified Communications platform for SMBs, and Hosted Service providers.
Westcon’s Guy Koster (pictured) said there should be some good incremental sales opportunities for the outfit’s partners with this new class of integrated Lync solution.
He said that ACS Express is a compelling proposition as it extends the reach of Lync 2013 enterprise voice into organisations of less than 100 users cheaply.
Koster said that Office 365 reseller partners and Lync hosting providers will be quick to recognise the new sales and services opportunities this solution represents.
AudioCodes is partnering with ACS as the platform provider of choice for the ACS Express. ACS Express is being used in combination with AudioCodes’ new Lync IP Phones to provide simple, end-to-end solution for SMB Lync deployments.