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New kid on the block

New start-up Sindoh UK & Ireland has secured exclusive distribution rights for Sindoh printers and MFPs and is looking to on-board new partners

The Coventry-based firm, a sister company of PCL Direct which remanufactures OEM polymerised toners, imaging and drum units, fuser, developer and transfer belt units, for Konica Minolta, Develop and Olivetti printers and MFPs, is actively recruiting resellers looking to add an additional printer line to their portfolio.

It’s fair to say that Sindoh is not a familiar brand within the print industry – and one which most end-users won’t have heard of. While the OEM has a long heritage manufacturing on behalf of Konica Minolta, Develop and Olivetti at its plants in Korea and China, up until now, its own brand range of A3 and A4 MFPs and printers have only been available in Europe via a distributor in Spain.

Sindoh UK & Ireland Managing Director Andrew Ellis, is a print industry veteran whose career includes 18 years working with Olivetti. He worked as a senior manager for Olivetti UK and was responsible for managing the dealer channel. In 2011 he moved to Sweden as Head of Sales for the Nordic region. Following the company’s restructure of its operations across Europe, and the creation of independent Olivetti Agencies in all regions, Ellis assumed responsibility for the Nordics as Managing Director/Owner of the agency and distribution company for Olivetti products in that region.

After moving back to the UK last year, Ellis was looking for a new investment opportunity and said the concept of bringing the Sindoh brand to the UK market came about after meeting the Spanish distributor at Paperworld. “We saw it as a great opportunity and one which complemented the PCL Direct business. We have a 140-strong customer base and that provides us with a great platform to start with,” he explained.

Product line-up
Sindoh’s product portfolio is currently limited and largely mono devices, but according to Ellis, there are plans to launch new colour models later this year. The line-up includes 30 and 45 ppm smart MFPs as well as a high end 47 ppm A4 all-in-one black and white MFP – featuring a colour touchscreen LCD. There is also a single function A4 mono laser printer with high speed duplex and network as standard features. There are currently two entry-level A3 colour MFPs in the range with speeds of 22 and 28 ppm respectively.

Ellis said that although it’s very early days, the decision to secure exclusive distribution rights in the UK and Ireland is paying off. The company has already recruited ten authorised reseller partners. “The brand provides a great opportunity for dealers to offer customers an alternative unique brand. It’s a small range but very competitively priced and some dealers will want to benefit from that,” he said.

In a market where hardware has become commoditised and with ever shrinking margins, the price point is what makes this brand an attractive alternative, according to Ellis. In addition to very competitive price points on hardware, the supplies pricing is also aggressive. “Working in partnership with our authorised Sindoh dealers our aim is to deliver high quality and innovative products at cost-effective prices. The brand provides resellers with a competitive advantage at entry level and the opportunity to win more business as well as earn more margin on transactional sales,” Ellis explained.

Dealer recruitment
Whilst partner recruitment is firmly on the agenda, Ellis stresses that there are no hard and fast targets to meet and the strategy is very much to do this in the right way. “The UK dealer channel will be limited to a small geographical number of dealers in the UK and Ireland,” he said. “We want to give our partners exclusivity and slowly grow the number of partners. We will ring fence geographical areas for authorised dealers, to ensure brand exclusivity to our partners,” he added.

Sindoh UK & Ireland holds stock in the UK, meaning partners will have easy access to products. As the business grows, the distributor will further increase its stock holding capacity.

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