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EMEA Channel Academy selects vendor winners

by Stuart Wilson, Monday 23 February 2009

Eight separate vendors walked away from the ‘EMEA Channel Academy: 2009 Awards’ ceremony knowing that they had the support and approval of senior distribution executives from across the region. EMEA’s first independent, vendor-neutral awards evening included live electronic voting during a glittering gala dinner at the impressive Salle des Etoiles in Monaco.

Close to 400 distribution executives attended the ’EMEA Channel Academy: 2009 Awards’, using live electronic voting devices to select the eventual winner in each category. A total of 29 vendors were nominated across the eight vendor award categories. In total more than 700 EMEA channel executives attended the Gala Dinner that celebrated the launch of the region’s first vendor-neutral independent channel awards.

"We would like to congratulate each and every one of the vendor winners at the ’EMEA Channel Academy: 2009 Awards’. Their achievement marks them out as a preferred partner for distributors from across the EMEA theatre and is testament to the strength and success of their channel engagement model," said Farouk Hemraj, director at the EMEA Channel Academy.

A close vote saw Asus walk away with the EMEA Desktop/Notebook Vendor of the Year Award, seeing off competition from fellow nominees Acer, Dell, HP and Toshiba. Asus’ regional director Luca Rossi accepted the award.

Apple, Canon, Logitech, Samsung and Sony battled it out for the evening’s second award: Digital Lifestyle Vendor of the Year. With many of its products and designs now taking on iconic status, Apple emerged a comfortable winner in this high growth category, demonstrating strong support from the EMEA distribution community.

In the EMEA Peripherals Vendor of the Year Award section, APC, Belkin, Buffalo, Netgear and WD faced the distributor vote. Having carved out an impressive retail business for its branded products in EMEA, WD emerged victorious.

AMD, Asus, Intel, Kingston and Seagate went head-to-head for the EMEA Components Vendor of the Year title. It was Intel that picked up the prize, demonstrating continued EMEA channel support for the components giant.

The pre-event nominations process had delivered an interesting mix of nominees for the EMEA Software Vendor of the Year Award, with Adobe, Kaspersky, Microsoft, Nero and Symantec making it through to the final five. Underlining the continued strength of the security software sector, Kaspersky picked up enough distributor votes to claim the prize.

The EMEA Accessories Vendor of the Year Award was contested between Belkin, Genius, Logitech, Manhattan and Targus. Logitech – a company that claims to drive innovation in PC navigation, internet communications and digital music – underlined its strong position in the EMEA market, picking up the coveted award.

The EMEA Printing Vendor of the Year Award saw five of the sector’s heavyweights go head-to-head with Canon, Epson, HP, Lexmark and Samsung competing for the distributor vote. Despite the strength of the challengers, industry behemoth HP secured the highest number of distributor votes to claim the award.

The final vendor award was EMEA Partner Programme of the Year with Apple, HP, Intel and Microsoft nominated. In a close-run vote, EMEA distributors selected Microsoft as their preferred vendor in this category. Eric Thijssen accepted the Microsoft award.

"The ’EMEA Channel Academy: 2009 Awards’ combined the glamour of Monte Carlo with the excitement of live voting. These awards are neutral and independent - and the channel itself picked the winners. It was our mission to make the ’EMEA Channel Academy: 2009 Awards’ as open and transparent as possible," added Hemraj.

Prior to the live voting session during the ’EMEA Channel Academy: 2009 Awards’ Gala Dinner, thousands of distributors from across the region were asked to pick their five preferred candidates for each award. In addition, media partners of the event established Local Selection Committees to canvass the opinion of channel partners in their country or region.

All of this information was collected and counted to determine the final five nominees for each award. These five nominees went through to the live voting session during the Gala Dinner.

Vendors were assessed on a number of criteria including partner engagement, channel strategy, pricing, stock management, product evolution, margin potential, channel management and overall partner programmes. The ‘EMEA Channel Academy: 2009 Awards’ was held in conjunction with DISTREE XXL, EMEA’s premier event for the distribution channel.

Planning for the ’EMEA Channel Academy: 2010 Awards’ is already underway.

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.

Find out more at www.distree.com/xxl

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