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APC dropping its brand; but not in IT

Rack and UPS vendor offers plenty of incentives to TechSelect partners

Quebec City – The brand APC is safe in the IT channel.

Schneider Electric, a 175-year old company founded in France, will be shelving all of its brands so that it can go out to market under just Schneider Electric brand.

In 2007 Schneider Electric acquired the UPS and Rack builder to combine them with one of its main competitor MGE, which the Rueil-Malmaison, France-based company bought in 2000. Since that time APC has branded itself as APC by Schneider Electric.

According to Chris Diamantes, national account manager for APC Canada, the IT channel business will see no changes to the APC brand. Diamantes told CDN that he sat on a two-hour conference call that discussed the APC brand and how it related to the IT market with Schneider Electric brass. In that call decisions were made as to which market would still have the APC brand and which would not.

“It was determined that the APC brand is valued for quality and longevity and would stay in the IT channel, but everything else from services to data centres would change to Schneider Electric,” he said.

Other Schneider Electric brands are Pelco, Xantrex, Areva and MGE.The Schneider Electric operation is a lot bigger than just APC and MGE and Diamantis added that the company would be moving into a new building in a Toronto suburb. This new home is intended to further establish the Schneider Electric brand coast-to-coast in Canada.

Diamantes made these announcements at the Tech Data Canada’s TechSelect conference in Quebec City. Tech Data is APC’s largest distributor. Diamantes called Tech Data “APC’s lead horse” and the company recently made a significant investment in Tech Data Canada’s newly re-opened Advanced Technology Solutions Centre (ATSC). “We believe in it and all of our equipment is in the ATSC,” he said.

Tech Data, for example, is the only distributor participating in APC’s Container Program, where products are directly shipped overseas to Tech Data facilities ensuring less touches and significantly reduce freight costs.Diamantes added that Tech Data is the only distributor in Canada that offers APC product trade ups.

Diamantes called the trade up process lucrative and also sometimes complicated. He said that most of those issues will be fixed by June 1st of this year where the price on the Web site will be the same as the those at Tech Data which he hopes will end any confusion.

“The trade up promos will not be combined with any other promos, but APC resellers should expect to see 20 to 25 per cent margin discounts if they take advantage of this program,” Diamantes said.

He also announced that the 55 members of the TechSelect community would be getting preferred pricing on specific SKUs where Tech Data has an abundance of inventory. Those special prices will be at 10 to 20 per cent discounts.

Diamantes other goal is to increase the active reseller base in Canada. He said the company wants more people buying APC and as an added bonus the company will offer resellers volume incentives for first time buyers. Currently APC boasts a reseller base of 6,500 in North America.