As Samsung aims to recruit 200 new partners and significantly increase its B2B market share,Paul Birkett, Sales and Marketing
Director for Samsung European Printing Division, tells Print IT Reseller about the company’s brand new channel MPS programme, Samsung Print+ MPS.
Samsung claims that the new Samsung Print+ MPS provides the channel with a comprehensive, easy access, low risk opportunity to deliver managed print services to small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs). Being web-based, the platform is easy to use and removes the cost, resource and capability barriers traditionally associated with selling and implementing MPS solutions.
Designed to provide resellers with the tools, knowledge and support to sell and implement managed print services without committing capital investment in operations or a service infrastructure, Samsung Print+ MPS will enable accredited partners to protect their MIF, capture more print-related spend and create a new revenue stream by adding print-related services and solutions under a managed print service.
Samsung sees a huge growth opportunity for channel partners in providing services beyond print – and not just within the traditional print channel. Birkett told Print IT Reseller that as well as expanding its printer channel base, the company is looking to develop new partnerships with IT resellers, systems integrators and VARs.
He hopes that Samsung Print+ MPS will also encourage more printer dealers to take on Samsung. “Within the traditional print channel, switching vendors has a high cost and the ROI cycle can be long. In the past that’s put many single-line dealers off. We want to make it easier for dealerships interested in taking on Samsung as a second brand to do so,” he said.
Risk-free, simple and secure
Designed for the SMB market, Samsung Print+ MPS is optimised for up to 50 devices per contract. “But there’s no reason why we can’t go larger,” Birkett said.
It has no-cost entry and provides a risk-free, simple, secure way for accredited partners to design, price, propose, contract and
manage MPS solutions. “Through a fully integrated cloud platform we have made contract set-up faster and maintenance and customer support smarter, all of which makes it easier for dealers to manage a profitable business,” explained Birkett.
The Print+ MPS Portal streamlines every aspect of the reseller’s printing business, from sales prospecting through to contract management and renewal, including deal configuration, pricing, proposal creation, contract generation, equipment order, contract activation, supplies automation, maintenance management, billing and contract management.
With or without service
Partners can sign up to Samsung Print+ With Service, under which Samsung manages the maintenance provision on the dealers’ behalf, or Samsung Print+ Without Service if a dealer prefers to use its own engineers to fulfil customer service requirements.
“It’s an excellent business proposition as it allows dealers to migrate over time,” Birkett said. “They can initially take devices with service included, meaning they don’t have to have engineers fully trained from day one, and then, as time goes on, add in further machines with no service. This removes the requirement for up-front investment in training and resource.”
“The other upside of this flexible offer,” explained Birkett, “is that it enables dealerships to service national accounts from day one. They can mix and match the ‘with’ and ‘without’ service packages as they need to, with the reassurance that they can access service from Samsung in areas outside of their geographical reach.”
There is also the potential for dealers to win multi-national accounts, as Samsung Print+ MPS will be a global offering. Following a two-month pilot with selected partners, starting in June, Samsung will begin partner recruitment in the UK and Belgium. The programme will then be rolled out across most other European countries later in the year. In 2017, Samsung plans to extend it to the USA and Asia Pacific regions.
“The pilot will be key in shaping the service,” explained Birkett. “We will start to train our first partners in June and have already engaged with a number of our resellers and have two national partners in place. The pilot will involve a total of about ten partners and, once that’s complete, we will proactively begin to work with other resellers.”
Samsung is also targeting growth within the IT channel and has shaped its MPS offer to appeal to IT resellers, systems integrators and VARs. “SIs will typically only transact print hardware as part of a larger solution. We’re confident that by offering them push button contract set-up and management, we will gain traction in this sector too,” Birkett said.
Samsung is aiming to sign up 200 partners to the programme in Europe this year and to double that number next year. “Our expectations are that 60% of those that sign up will be new customers or dealerships that have previously transacted with us in small quantities,” said Birkett.
“We’re expecting to have 400 new partners by 2018. It’s a conservative target, and if we only hit those numbers I will be disappointed. I’m very much of the mindset that we underestimate and over-deliver. Samsung Print+ MPS is simple to sell and manage; it delivers strong service reporting and data; is no-risk, no-cost; and offers strong revenue and profit potential,” he said.
Samsung Print+ MPS builds on Samsung’s existing MPS offer, which uses a softwarebased tool to provide partners with visibility over their customers’ printing devices, whether standalone or as part of a fleet, and a simple way to remotely monitor and manage multiple machines, via a single, user-friendly web-based interface.
“What we’ve done is to create a heavily customised portal that’s integrated with our pan-European supply chain for hardware, consumables and maintenance provision, in real-time,” Birkett said. “We wanted it to be incredibly simple, with partners simply having to push a button to get an MPS contract up and running.
“One of the most exciting things about it is how it links to our technology. We have embedded a Data Collection Agent (DCA) into our hardware so dealers don’t have to install any software on the client’s network to get an MPS contract up and running. If a dealer installs one printer with XOA-E capability, the DCA will detect other devices [mid-range and A3 only]. This software will enable the reseller to monitor all devices on the client network and track consumables status, service status, meter reads and device settings remotely.”
Birkett added: “We’re very excited about the embedded DCA, as after the pilot we expect that this will enable mixed fleet monitoring. We’ve already had interest in this from some of our bigger dealerships.”
The Samsung Print+ MPS programme’s proprietary in-built remote monitoring tool delivers complete visibility of customers’ printing devices, providing resellers with the ability to remotely monitor and manage multiple machines even in complex network environments, via a single, secure and user-friendly web portal.
Reports are automatically generated to provide relevant information regarding the efficiency and effectiveness of a fleet of devices. Data on toner levels, service status, meter readings and device settings can be collected by customer, location, building or floor. In addition, time-intensive, errorprone processes, such as meter readings, invoicing, supplies replenishment and service fulfilment, can be automated, simplifying and streamlining the after-sales service delivery process.
Resellers’ customers can also access the portal to request support, track service status or view reports and review fleet performance.
All data from the Print+MPS Portal is securely stored and processed in the Print+MPS Cloud, with resellers’ customer account information, pricing, service data and billing remaining confidential.
“It’s a really simple premise, but incredibly clever,” said Birkett. “There’s nothing to do except buy the hardware and add the MPS contract – with or without service – to enable automated supplies replenishment and service. There’s no manual intervention and a dealer can take an MPS contract live in about twenty minutes.”
Samsung partners wishing to provide Samsung Print+ MPS must attend a oneday training programme in order to receive certification as an accredited partner. The programme is available to dealers who wish to leverage the benefits of the OEMsupported nationwide service support, as well as those with an established in-house service operation.