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DISTREE Africa 2015 unites regional channel community

by Stuart Wilson, Friday 12 June 2015

The 2nd annual DISTREE Africa created new channel business opportunities for participating technology and consumer electronics (CE) brands. The event gathered more than 310 industry delegates. During the three-day event, hundreds of one-on-one meetings took place between delegates with many new distribution and retail deals agreed on site.

DISTREE Africa 2015 was supported by Huawei and Quantum as Platinum Sponsors; distributors Mitsumi and Redington as Gold Sponsors; plus Acer and Brother as Silver Sponsors. DISTREE Africa also included a comprehensive conference programme with a mixture of keynotes, workshops, panel discussions and awards sessions.

Farouk Hemraj, Director and Co-Founder at DISTREE Events, said: “There is an incredible energy in African channels at the moment as the speed of market development accelerates. This event gave vendors and distributors access to retailers from across the continent.”

“The event allowed delegates to discuss the major channel issues impacting the market. This included two panel discussions that provided deep insight on how vendors, distributors and retailers can improve their cooperation to drive the market forward,” he added.

The vendor panel at DISTREE Africa featured Acer, Huawei, Lenovo, Linksys, Quantum and Ricoh. The retail panel at DISTREE Africa included representatives from Fone Express, Jumia, PC World and Slot.

Speaking during the panel, Bobby Gadhia, CEO at Kenya’s PC World, said: “Most vendors are hungry for business in Africa, but the most important thing now is for them to shift from a product and price approach and to start building real channel relationships in the region.”

Major brands including AMD, Belkin, Dell and HP also participated at the event, alongside a wide variety of vendors looking to launch or expand their routes-to-market across Africa. GfK was an official Event Partner, delivering a keynote, breakfast briefing session and workshops, sharing their insight on the latest market trends. Consultancy firm Navo and Nairobi-based technology community iHub also presented as part of the conference programme.

“The initial feedback on this year’s DISTREE Africa has been overwhelmingly positive,” continued Hemraj. “We believe this event has a great future in Africa and offers unique business benefits for all attendees. We look forward to welcoming even more retailers, distributors and vendors next year. Planning is already underway for DISTREE Africa 2016.”

“As markets mature and develop we start to see the emergence of channel communities. DISTREE Africa puts delegates at the very centre of this community. As an independent trade-focused event, DISTREE Africa wants to engage more closely with all vendors, distributors and retailers operating in the region, allowing them to create mutually beneficial business opportunities,” he concluded.

The DISTREE Diamond Awards series made their debut in the region this year at DISTREE Africa 2015. The recipients of the DISTREE Diamond Awards were determined using on-site feedback from retailers and e-tailers attending the event.

Hemraj explained: “The DISTREE Diamond Awards serve as recognition for companies that offer a compelling channel proposition. Selected by retailers based on their interaction with exhibitors during the event, the DISTREE Diamond Awards are a hallmark of quality in terms of vendors’ go-to-market strategy.”

The ‘60s to Convince Awards’ also formed part of the conference programme at DISTREE Africa with retailers voting live to select overall winners in three categories. Intelligent Technologies won the Best Product Design Award for the Zoook Bullet. CTRONIQ picked up both the Best Product Innovation and Best Presentation Awards for its Wearable Kids Tracker product.

Media Partnership

We are pleased to confirm that Channel EMEA is an official Media Partner for all DISTREE events in 2015, including DISTREE Africa.

DISTREE Africa 2015, which takes place from June 10-12th in Nairobi gathers together hundreds of senior executives from the region’s leading ICT & CE e-tailers, retailers and distributors. Readers requiring more information about DISTREE events in 2015 should contact events@channelemea.com.

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