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Video Boom

Posted on 12/08/2011

Video conferencing is set to boom with an anticipated £150m leap in sales over the next few years. Distributor Nimans says continued economic pressures are fuelling end user demand - whilst much more attractive cost of entry ensures there’s never been a better time for resellers to embrace the VC arena.

Head of Conferencing Sales,Ian Brindlesays video conferencing has finally come of age for resellers operating at all levels of the market – from SMB to enterprise – as solutions start from just a few thousand pounds.

“For years VC
has been perceived as an expensive and complicated revenue generator where attractive returns on investment were hard to justify, particularly at the lower end of the market.  But it’s a very different scenario today,” he explained.

“Many resellers haven’t had realistic access to VC in the past but that’s all changed now. It’s easy to deploy, use and sell and is extremely margin rich – satisfying an increased end user appetite to cut travel costs in these prudent times.”

Ian says continued growth in Unified Communications – where VC can play an instrumental role – is also fuelling adoption. “We are seeing significant expansion in the Unified Comms market with Microsoft Lync enabled products and end points. There’s a host of solutions that sit round the whole UC message which is driving sales. Video is also a very sound base for that.”

Nimans has been busy setting up its own school of excellence, based on unrivalled SMB expertise and fully supported accreditation programmes designed to make selling VC easy – incorporating brands such as RADVISION, Panasonic and Polycom.

Ian added: “Historically video solutions were aimed at high end corporate institutions where SMB’s couldn’t really justify returns on investment. However all the leading manufacturers now offer cost effective technology which is easy to embrace. It’s not bandwidth hungry and ROI is far quicker in today’s environment than it’s ever been.  We have been very selective in our own portfolio because we realise that cost of entry has put many resellers off in the past.”

Ian says VC is a growing market which provides system-based resellers with an opportunity to take advantage of additional revenue streams – gaining more from their existing bases.

“There are a lot of dealers that for various reasons have never been able to take the step into video. Independent statistics forecast that that the UK video market will grow year-on-year in terms of attachment and adoption rates so the time is now, don’t get left behind. Certainly from our perspective we see the remainder of this year and 2012 to be very productive. Across Europe, the latest industry research indicates that sales currently stand at $750m. These are set to rise to $925m by 2015.”

Ian highlighted: “For a reseller, the key customer message is that it’s not about replacing all of your travel, but replacing unnecessary journeys. It’s about fitting the final piece into their own product portfolio.”

RADVISION, one of the early pioneers of video infrastructure, is a new name in the frame at Nimans, illustrating how the comms distributor continues to develop its brand proposition.

“Entry level systems start from around £2,000 but an average invoice is around £10,000 with margin expectations of around 25%. The way we have carefully structured our portfolio is to avoid any saturation in the market so that whenever a reseller goes after some business they won’t be competing with dozens of rival quotes.”

Ian concluded: “Traditional barriers to video conferencing which have previously restricted demand from both resellers and their customers simply do not exist any more. VC is something that all resellers should be looking to embrace. We’re heading for a boom time.”

eCommerce by: Cohesion Digital