About 55 per cent of the business in the commercial space goes through the channel. It can even probably be around 85 per cent depending on the quarter and who is buying. It is very important for us to maintain a strong relationship with the channel. We have refreshed some of our channel programs over the last year really to drive more profitability. I think we are all challenged by similar things in terms of the margins within the box. To maintain that longer term relationships with partners we don't have a services strategy to go direct. We are also interested in building the right programs to help drive behaviour and profitability in a client PC sale.
We run promotions with them time to time. We have events like we have today. We have unique support for the channel. We run a platinum certification for our partners around the tools we have. We certify them and then get them to understand and utilise the tools we have. We provide marketing tools where they can essentially leverage deliverables, marketing tools, information tools and customise them to their customers and hopefully drive more demand that way.
We have BDMs and all distributors to go out and support the channel as well.
We have a tiered model where we have direct relationships with some larger partners and then a broader tier 2 structure through distribution. We have three key distributors in Australia and two in NZ. We enable and invest with them to deliver the right programmes but also have a value-added service on their behalf.
Q: Do you have any plans on expanding your partner network?
MC: I am always interested in growing our partner network.
In terms of our managed partners there is a certain level that we will maintain, and that is driven by the amount of business that they do with us. Our unmanaged partners are largely through the distribution channel. We have an acquisitions strategy there. We offer incentives and deals to acquire new partners and have them purchasing Lenovo for the first time. I am very interested in continuing that and driving that a lot harder.
If you look at the partner communities in ANZ we service a fair share of those but we have opportunity to do that better. We try to enable the right tools for even the smaller resellers.
We have got probably the best product in the market. We have got a very strong product in the ThinkPad box that delivers innovation continuously. It is really about exposing a broader partner community to that. So we can get them aboard and keep them aboard.
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