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DISTREE XXL confirms powerful workshop programme

by Stuart Wilson, Monday 26 January 2009

DISTREE XXL, the premier event for the distribution channel in EMEA, has confirmed a powerful line-up of channel experts to participate in its workshop programme. Workshop moderators at DISTREE XXL include leading analysts from a number of top channel consultancies, allowing delegates the opportunity to hear the latest views from a variety of industry experts.

“The workshop programme is just one of the value-add advantages that makes DISTREE XXL a unique proposition in the EMEA distribution channel,” said Farouk Hemraj, CEO at DISTREE Events. “As a truly independent event, we are able to source workshop moderators from many different companies, ensuring that our delegates are kept up to speed on the widest range of channel trends and ideas.”

“The emphasis is on education in these sessions,” added Hemraj. “All workshop moderators are fully briefed and encouraged to run interactive sessions that are fully engaged with the audience. These sessions are designed to help delegates shape their business strategy; not to try and sell them a service.”

Workshop moderators include Julian Dent, Chairman at routes to market consultancy Via International; Pascal Bollon, worldwide director of IT products at research giant GfK; Howard Davies, director at Context; Francis Tchertoff, senior partner at Channel Experts, and Matt Rowland-Jones, managing director at bChannels.

Dent will run a focused session for vendors examining how best to build market share in distribution, while Tchertoff will focus on the changing dynamics of the consumables channel. bChannels’ Rowland-Jones will examine the changing role of partners in Western Europe and the implications this has on the development of the channel landscape in some of EMEA’s emerging market.

Context’s Davies will examine new trends in the European market using evidence from the company’s extensive distributor database. Context collects weekly sales data from over 30 of the largest distributors in EMEA. The analysis of this database is able to reveal key new trends very early in their development.

GfK’s Bollon, along with colleague Rudi Aunkofer, will run two workshops at DISTREE XXL: one focused on the role of specialist resellers and a second examining how product bundling is having a profound impact on the future of selling IT products.

In total, delegates at DISTREE XXL will have a dozen workshop sessions to choose from. EMEA retail analyst Ryan Mackey will also host a session looking back on a turbulent 2008. The cash and credit crunch of 2008 rocked the retail landscape and left many major chains reeling. Mackey’s workshop will examine key lessons from these failures, and more importantly, what the survivors reveal about the future of retail and the implications for the EMEA distribution channel.

Breandan Mac Ferran from Bright Marketing Future Consulting will lead a workshop focused on what distributors must do to move beyond a basic logistics function and make themselves indispensable to the vendors they represent.

Middle East channel expert Philip Hughes, CEO at The Channel Development Company, will run a workshop session for vendors focused on what retailers now need – and expect – from vendors. Hughes will focus on the delicate balance needed to create a mutually beneficial business relationship between vendors and retailers covering topics such as exclusivity, picking the right people and establishing the right support structure.

Distributors will also have the opportunity to put their views across in a roundtable discussion session moderated by Julian Pletts from Channel Middle East magazine. Pletts’ roundtable discussion will focus on lead generation and market development, asking whether it is the responsibility of the vendor or the distributor. Exploring the issues surrounding MDF, channel breadth, reseller recruitment, advertising, promotion and channel road shows, this workshop promises to get under the skin of the vendor-distributor dynamic

As part of its ongoing commitment to help vendors quickly and efficiently enter new markets within EMEA, one workshop will focus on business development in Russia. Rainer Stawinoga, partner at Consulting Russia, will lead a session for vendors focused on building channels and establishing operations in this growth market.

The DISTREE XXL workshop sessions are scheduled for February 12th, the final day of the event, which takes place in Monaco. DISTREE XXL 2009 will gather together 400-plus distribution executives from 80-plus countries throughout the EMEA theatre. Representatives from more than 100 vendors will also be present at DISTREE XXL, looking to enhance or extend their channel reach.

DISTREE XXL attracts distributors from across EMEA, including delegates from emerging markets such as the Middle East, Africa, Russia & CIS. The event serves vendors that are new to the region as well as those looking to expand or deepen their distribution reach.

Final applications for DISTREE XXL are still being accepted from distributors and vendors that meet the qualifying criteria. If you wish to participate in EMEA’s premier distribution conference and attend an event that delivers genuine business value, please contact fhemraj@distree.com

Find out more at www.distree.com/xxl

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