Rashi launches Channel Business Forum IV
Rashi Peripherals announced the commencement of its Flagship event Channel Business Forum (CBF IV) at Jabalpur and Solapur simultaneously. This is in association with Altec Lansing, ASUS, Freecom, HP, Logitech, Netgear and SanDisk. CBF IV will travel to 45 cities all across India, which would include B, C, D and E class cities and cover a distance 41,431 kms. So far, the response has been great for Rashi with an average participation of 40–45 partners in each city. The theme for this year’s CBF IV is “Re-fuelling IT”, wherein the focus will be on the 4Ps of IT distribution. It is spread across a period of three months and includes 27 new cities, where an event like CBF IV would be the first of its kind.
Announcing the launch, Suresh Pansari, Managing Director, Rashi Peripherals Pvt. Ltd., said, “Channel Business Forum started off as a 39-city event in 2005 and over the years it has got bigger and better. For the last two years, our major focus has been on B, C, D and E class cities. And this year, CBF IV will travel to some very small cities like Haldwani, Bhagalpur, Silchar, Asansol, Tirunelveli and Kannur. In fact, we will be covering 24 E-class cities. With our theme of““Refuelling IT”, we plan to help channel partners take their business to the next level.”
CBF IV is a forum which brings together channel partners across the country and its participating vendors on a common platform, thus enabling them to have a one-to-one interaction. CBF IV is also a forum to showcase new technology and educate channel partners about the new market trends, eventually giving an edge over competition and helping them earn better margins. Commenting further, Pansari said, “With a platform like this, we not only foresee huge business opportunities in these regions, but also look forward to strengthening our channel partner base across India.”
CBF IV is a multi-city channel education programme supported by Altec Lansing, ASUS, Freecom, HP, Logitech, Netgear, SanDisk and driven by Rashi Peripherals Pvt. Ltd. In fact, vendors like ASUS, HP, Logitech and Netgear have been part of CBF since its inception in 2005. The initiative for CBF was taken by Rashi in 2005 and since then it has been going strong.
Rashi has emerged as one of the large distributors in India and has been coveted by overseas vendors for some time, what is the reason behind it?
We constantly try and provide value addition to the brands that we deal in. Instead of being a logistics partner, we create awareness for a new product / technology. These steps help in building relationship with the partners and thus repeat business from them. Vendors come to us as they are sure that doing business will help them to get a good foothold in the Indian market.
What kind of services do you provide to vendors?
We create awareness for a product / technology that we deal in by various promotional activities like Channel Business Forum, i.e. 40–50 city road shows and Rashi product guide which we distribute to more than 10,000 channel community partners. Moreover, there are various direct and indirect marketing conducted periodically. Therefore, we are not only partners as supply chain logistics, but also build brand and provide service to the channels / end-users. This helps brand establish strong infrastructure to support its customers and become leaders in the market.
What is the advantage for vendors to partner with Rashi in India?
How different is Rashi from other distributors in India? Rashi believes in upselling instead of selling at cheaper prices. We understand the importance of earning healthy margins at all levels of channel. Moreover, we are currently present in 53 cities. Vendors can be confident that their brand positioning will be maintained and their products will reach even smaller cities by partnering with Rashi.
What is the turnover of the company and how has been its growth during the last two years?
In the last fiscal FY07-08, our turnover was Rs.675 crore. In the last couple of years, we have maintained a steady growth of 40 to 45 per cent Y-o-Y, outpacing the industry growth.
How does Rashi manage so many types of vendors that range from components to PCs to peripherals to networking products?
We at Rashi are not driven by topline, but try to strike a balance between toplines and bottomlines. We have APC, Altec Lansing, AMD, Asus, Compex, HP, Jetway, Logitech, Lenovo, Leadtek, Nexans, Netgear, Prolink, Pixel View, Procurve, Sandisk, Sony, Senao and XFX. We would not say that we have a lot of brands, but we have a good mix of brands and are trying to have a complete basket of products for our partners and be able to support them well. Internally, we have divided all our brands in various divisions like components, peripherals, PCD and networking. This helps us to function smoothly.
What kind of value addition Rashi has been providing?
Rashi does marketing, provides geographical reach and service set-up through the Rashi Care Centre.
How many partners do you have?
Do you have classification of partners? We have around 10,000 channel partners, out of which 7,000 are active partners. This means that these 7,000 partners are doing business with us at least once every month. These partners are classified based on their core business strength in either retail, SMB / SoHo, corporates, etc.
Rashi has started a lot of channel programmes. Tell us something more about them?
We continuously keep coming up with innovative channel programmes from time to time. These depend upon a lot of factors including locations and the brand positioning. Recently, we awarded our partners with 11 Steps of London and took 80 persons to London as a part of sales promotion programme for our distributed brands.
What is the present headcount of Rashi?
We are present in 53 locations equipped with pre- and post-sales support managed by over 600 employees.
What is your expansion plan in 2008-09? Do you want to add any software product? We will continue to grow more than the pace of the industry and will keep you informed about any new tie-up whenever it happens.