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May 01, 2013 l Volume 3 Issue 01

Cover Story With its existing customer base and IT skill-sets, venturing into the physical security market is a natural progression for the IT channel. Not only is it growing at a faster rate than the IT market, but also offers significantly higher margins

18 Cover Design : Deepjyoti Bhowmik

NEWS Analyses

Channel Chief

Asus CBD targets `600 crore in 2013

8

SAP sees strong opportunities for RDS

8

Dell introduces emerging city program

11

Nvidia plans upcountry expansion 11

Nitin Hiranandani Director, Printing, PPS, HP India, speaks about the company’s new partner programs and plans for the office and consumer printing market

13 Special Focus Centers of opportunity Despite the slowdown in overall IT spends, the data center market continues to be strong thanks to technology refresh, virtualization and private cloud deployments

25 Market Focus

READ More Editorial 10 Opinion

12

Feedback

12

Channel Buzz

33

New Products

35

Shadow Ram

40

Get Personal

40

6

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Limited upside for PC assemblers While the PC building market saw a decline over the past two years, new technologies and the impending launch of Intel’s new processor suggest some positive trends ahead

Role Model Ahead of the curve Vijay Wadhi, Uttam Majumdar and Durganadh Venkata, Directors, Locuz Enterprise Solutions, share their exciting journey, future plans and growth strategies

30


CONSUMABLES ARE PRINTER’S HEART USE CANON GENUINE CARTRIDGES TO ENHANCE YOUR PRINTER’S

LIFE

1

2 Issues arising from use of Counterfeits

HOW TO IDENTIFY GENUINE CONSUMABLES

Corporate Office: CANON INDIA PVT LTD. 7th & 8th Floor, Tower B Building # 5, DLF Cyber Terraces, DLF Phase III Gurgaon – 122002. For further information Call Canon : 39010101/1800 180 3366 or visit www.canon.co.in


starting line MUST

Asus CBD targets `600 crore in 2013

SAP sees strong opportunities for RDS

n ABHIJEET MUKHERJEE

Read

SAP India is enabling its 50 SMB partners to sell its pre-packaged, templatized Rapid Deployment Solutions (RDSs) through a managed partner program. SAP is also likely to appoint a national distributor to sell its SMB-focused products to a wider channel base. “We have appointed dedicated partner managers for each of the 50 partners,and are trying to build a customized GTM strategy for each,” said Bronwyn Hastings, Senior VP, Ecosystem & Channels, APJ, SAP. An RDS is essentially a pre-packaged solution using industry best practices, templates and fixed cost implementation services, among others. The company has so far developed RDS templates for 22 micro-verticals including media, manufacturing, dairy, hatchery, retail and utilities. “Partners with strong domain skills can also develop their own RDSs and integrate their best practices and domain-specific customizations with our solutions. For other partners this is an almost-ready-toship software,” she Bronwyn Hastings said. The RDS experiment seems to be paying off in India as SAP says that the country is the largest RDS market in APAC. Another focus area for the company is HANA (High Performance Analytic Appliance), its in-memory database and business analytics solution. Hastings said that partners have been encouraged to set up PoCs for HANA and for SAP mobility solutions. “We are seeing bigger opportunities through channels in database, ERP, mobility, analytics and cloud, and will position more of our solutions through partners. We are encouraging partners to undergo certifications that would help them to sell and support better,” Hastings added. SAP India is in discussions with a national distributor to sell products such as HANA, Sybase and some of the RDS solutions to reach a wider channel base. n — Sonal Desai

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he component business division (CBD) of Asus is eying 50 percent growth in revenue in 2013. The company expects to clock `600 crore compared to the `400 crore of 2012. Informed Vinay Shetty, Country Manager, Component Business, Asus India, “To achieve the target we have formed a twopronged plan—one, to enlist partners across our product portfolio to sell components and increase marketshare; and two, to launch more SKUs in desktops, AIOs, networking products, motherboards and servers.” Despite the decline of the assembled PC market, Shetty is upbeat about boosting Asus’ motherboard and graphics cards business. “We are confident of increasing our marketshare in the motherboard segment from the current 23 percent to 25 percent in 2013. The motherboard market is currently dominated by Intel, Asus and Gigabyte who collectively have a 70 percent share. Intel’s decision to exit the desktop motherboard market will help us grab a bigger slice of the pie.” In graphics cards, Asus says it has 39 percent share and sees a healthy 15-20 percent growth on the back of its focus on overclockers, gamers and multimedia enthusiasts. In the desktop space, it aims to sell 12,000 units and 5,000 units of AIOs per quarter through LFRs and multi-brand stores respectively. “We launched AIOs in November 2012 and expect to increase our desktop and AIO marketshare from the present less-than-1 percent to 3 percent of the two million total addressable market,” Shetty said. Servers are another focus area for Asus. The company that launched 1-way and 2-way serv-

“We will focus on AIOs, servers and networking products to drive growth. In motherboard segment our aim is to increase our marketshare” Vinay Shetty

Country Manager Component Business, Asus India

ers ranging from `22,000 to `2.2 lakh in December 2012 expects to sell 11,000 units in 2013. Said Shetty, “Rashi is our national distributor, but we want to sign on four regional distributors and OEM partners. HCL, one of our OEM partners, recently executed a large project for a global university by using Asus servers. We are banking on such large deals to increase our marketshare to 3 percent.” The company also has high hopes for its networking business. “We will be working with 25 Asus Elite Club partners who have been appointed exclusively to drive the networking business. Plans are afoot to tap the 325odd Gold partners of the Asus Systems Business Division to bundle wireless routers with Asus notebooks. We hope to sell 76,000 wireless routers in 2013 vis-à-vis 54,000 in 2012,” he continued. Along with this growth plan Asus is streamlining its postsales service to reduce its TAT. Informed Shetty, “We have appointed service executives in the 20 top cities; they will work with service providers for faster warranty replacement. Our aim is to bring down the TAT for our products to 24-48 hours for all types of warranty cases.” n


edit opinion A promising market

Volume 3, Issue 01

dhaval valia

P

hysical security (PS) is a promising market for all types of IT partners. While for solution providers the opportunity lies in providing IP surveillance, access control and intelligent building management, for smaller resellers there are opportunities in providing security and safety solutions to homes, SOHOs and small businesses. The opportunities are real, and within the grasp of partners who already have a large customer base and IT skill-sets. Not to forget that it offers better margins than the IT business. Currently, only 30 percent of the PS market is IP-based while the rest is analog. But as it increasingly goes IP—by 2015 nearly 60 percent of all PS products and services will be IP-based—the opportunity for IT partners will multiply. What’s more, this would lead to CIOs making decisions regarding PS deployments because they will need to integrate these solutions with their existing IT infrastructure. PS is a natural progression for a solution provider because nearly 70 percent of the infrastructure required for the deployment of PS is IT—networking, storage, server and connectivity. For resellers and retailers targeting home and small businesses, PS can be a lucrative venture. Home users are increasingly securing their homes with door-video devices. Small shops and micro-businesses are deploying intrusion protection and IP surveillance at their premises. Microbusinesses like restaurants and small manufacturing units are deploying IP cameras to remotely monitor their work premises. Some of the large solution providers have already entered PS and vouch for the wide opportunities and better margins in the business compared to IT. Surat-based Innovative Systems has done more than 15 IBMS projects over the past three years, with the size of each in the range of `1 crore-1.5 crore. Delhi-based MK Infosystems, a networking integrator, started its PS practice three years back; today this contributes nearly 30 percent to its overall revenue. Among smaller resellers, Mumbai-based Futech began offering PS just two years ago but is already doing good business by deploying solutions for shops, micro-businesses and housing societies. Vadodara-based Maa Trading has deployed PS solutions at Skoda and Honda for their franchiseeled showrooms and service centers; it also offers PS on rental during Navratri. My recommendation to all partners reading this is to seriously explore the prospects of venturing into PS. The easiest way to start is by talking to your existing customers about their PS needs. Read our cover story to see how a few IT partners have built a successful PS practice. n E-mail CRN Executive Editor Dhaval Valia at dhaval.valia@ubm.com 10

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Managing Director Printer & Publisher Associate Publisher & Director Executive Editor Contributing Editor Assistant Editor Principal Correspondent Senior Correspondent

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Joji George Kailash Pandurang Shirodkar Anees Ahmed Dhaval Valia Ramdas S Sonal Desai Abhijeet Mukherjee (Mumbai) Amit Singh (Delhi) Deepjyoti Bhowmik Yogesh Naik Shailesh Vaidya Jinal Chheda, Sameer Surve Samta Datta Viraj Mehta Nilesh Mungekar Nitin Lahare Aditi Kanade Yogesh Mudras Satyendra Mehra Jagruti Kudalkar

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Kangkan Mahanta kangkan.mahanta@ubm.com (M) +91 8971232344

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starting line Dell introduces emerging city program n RAMDAS S

“We will appoint more distributors to expand our stock and sell model to reach small partners and smaller cities”

D

ell has identified 11 Class B cities across the country where it will appoint two strategic partners. These partners will work on mapped accounts as part of the emerging markets channel initiative of its PartnerDirect program. The 11 cities are Nashik, Lucknow, Coimbatore, Kochi, Chandigarh, Vadodara, Nagpur, Visakhapatnam, Jaipur, Mysore and Indore. The partners chosen will virtually enjoy an account-based registration model. “We are in the first phase of expanding the channel program in emerging markets in the country. We have great working relations with channels in the top cities. We want to work with a smaller set of partners in the emerging markets, and to ensure that they are able to build a critical mass with Dell we

Richard Lee

Vice President APAC & Japan, Dell GCC

are jointly identifying accounts with them,” explained Richard Lee, VP, APAC & Japan, Dell Global Commercial Channels (GCC). In the next phase Dell may add more cities to the program depending on the success of the new model. “A key message to our

partners is that Dell is flexible, and is willing to work depending on the market and the partner’s strengths as long as it’s within the broad framework of GCC,” he added. For other partners in emerging markets, Dell is betting on the stock-and-sell model through HCL Digilife. “We will appoint more distributors to expand our stock and sell model to reach small partners and smaller cities.” The biggest investments Dell is making is in channel training. “In the next few quarters commercial partners will see more momentum from Dell on training,” Lee said. Another key message from Lee was that Dell is willing to listen and change. “Recently we launched the partner advisory council in India to understand precisely what changes the channels want from us.” n

Nvidia plans upcountry expansion n ABHIJEET MUKHERJEE

“As the big markets saturate, penetration in smaller cities will drive the next phase of growth. We plan to increase our partner base by 40 percent in 2013”

N

vidia is eying channel expansion in smaller cities to tap opportunities in the consumer graphics and commercial space. The company wants to increase its presence from 35 to 67 cities through innovative campaigns and customer engagements. “As the big markets saturate, penetration in smaller cities will drive the next phase of growth. To increase coverage we have already increased our sub-distributors (Elite Partners) from 100 to 150. In addition, we have increased our channel base by almost 30 percent, and by the end of the year we plan to increase it by another 40 percent. To target the professional workstation and high performance computing (HPC) market we have already enabled 40 focused partners and plan to add another 20 during the year,” informed Vishal Dhupar, Managing Director, South Asia, Nvidia. Nvidia works with Rashi, Aditya

Vishal Dhupar

Managing Director South Asia, Nvidia

Infotech, Abacus Peripherals, TAG and Topnotch Infotronix—for its GeForce product line targeted at consumer users. For its Quadro professional range Rashi is the sole ND. To drive its professional range, Nvidia has updated its Quadro Preferred Partner program to include several new benefits for focused partners and also launched the new Tesla

Preferred Partner program for partners focused on providing HPC. Nvidia, which recently introduced Quadro K600, a new entry-level product for professionals, is planning innovative campaigns in the commercial segment. “We plan to create gaming zones in large enterprises especially in the IT-ITeS vertical where executives can take time-out to experience flight simulations or practice shadow boxing,” explained Dhupar. “We will also conduct roadshows for professionals in other sectors.” Nvidia has also refreshed its consumer range with new models such as GTX Titan and GTX 650 Ti BOOST for gamers. “To target youth we have lined up a campaign where we will have gaming competitions in educational campuses,” he said. In addition, Nvidia has updated its nTrain partner training program. “We have created separate training for partners focused on the consumer, professional and HPC segments,” Dhupar informed. n

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edit opinion Why you can’t talk about products anymore Kelley Damore

A

t the annual CRN XChange Solution Provider Conference in the US, one thing became crystal-clear: it’s not business as usual, and disruption, confusion and angst will be the new normal. If you have 5-7 years left in your career you may be able to ride the wave, tweak your model, and earn a good living. But if you need to pass your business to the next generation or sell your business for your retirement today’s typical VAR model won’t work and the valuation you get for your business will be disappointing at best. Here’s why you need to change now: The IT decisionmaker is changing, and changing fast. According to Gartner, 41 percent of the IT budget is now outside IT. The implication of this shift is two-fold. First, you need to change the conversation you are having with clients. You can’t talk about products anymore. You must talk about business outcomes. At XChange, Tiffani Bova, Distinguished Analyst at Gartner, suggested that partners need to take a few cues from the McKinseys of the world—they don’t sell technology solutions, they sell business outcomes. While most VARs got into the business for the love of technology, you will need to get out of your comfort zone and reposition the conversation around the business. This new IT buyer wants a problem solved—that’s all. You also need to get in front of this customer with whom you may not have a relationship. To reach the head of HR, or the executive who handles the supplychain, or the marketing executive, you must market your services. Traditionally, VARs have not been good at marketing, but if you want to expand your customer base and grow, you need to bring in some skills and leverage new platforms. The cloud is obviously forcing this change too, and you need to figure out where you should play. There will be lots of opportunities to provide guidance in melding public clouds and private clouds, and cloud management will be an opportunity in the future. With cloud computing comes even more skills that you will need. A recurring-revenue model will force you to think about billing differently, and you will need to bring in some expertise there. While you need to understand where the model is going, traditional vendors also must encourage the shift. In this model the vendor’s brand may be less visible, but if the industry is going to move to IT-as-a-service and to new customers, everyone needs to embrace the fact that disruption is a foregone conclusion. n

E-mail Kelley Damore at kelley.damore@ec.ubm.com 12

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Microsoft India’s new policies upset partners Starting April 1, 2013, Microsoft and its distributors have floated different price list for different states and this is bound to breed a lot of confusion and malpractices in the channels. It is really ironic that when Microsoft didn’t have an India billing office it had a single price list, but now with a sales subsidiary they have two price lists. Microsoft and its distributors should sit and sort out this issue and return to the billing and logistics practices followed earlier. There could be dire legal consequences for both Microsoft and its distributors if they don’t sort of the matter of two price lists—they can be challenged under the Competi-

tion Commission of India. Prem P Tricom Multimedia

Alok Ohrie moves to Dell Alok Ohrie’s move from IBM to Dell came a week before IBM admitted that it is in talks with Lenovo to sell its xSeries server business. This suggests that Ohrie was aware of this strategic decision before it became public and hence he decided to quit IBM. As far as I know Ohrie, he is a true-blue IBM man and he is unlikely to fit into Dell’s channel unfriendly culture. Ohrie didn’t succeed with AMD and EMC and had to return to IBM. An IBM partner via online post

Send your feedback at editor@ubmindia.com or post your views on www.crn.in

Advertiser Index Company name

Page No Web site

Sales Contact

Smartlink

1 www.digisol.com

helpdesk@digisol.com

Smartlink

2 www.digisol.com

helpdesk@digisol.com

Canon

4

1800 180 3366

HP

5 www.hp.com

in.contact@hp.com

Canon

7

1800 180 3366

Cisco

9 www.cisco.com/go/ucsbenchmarks www.cisco.in/servers

Avnet

15

www.canon.co.in

www.canon.co.in

www.ats.avnet.co.in

indu.rajeev@avnet.com

CLS

27 www.crn.in/Isummit

anees.ahmed@ubm.com

Asus Component

36

reachus@asus.com

TP-Link

37 www.tp-link.in

sales.in@tp-link.com

RDP

38

www.rdpcomputing.in

info@rdpcomputing.in

Asus System

39

www.asus.in

1800-2090-365

Biz

40 www.indiaantivirus.com

sales@indiaantivirus.com

Dell

41 www.dell.co.in

www.dell.co.in/domore

Kaspersky

42 www.kaspersky.co.in

sales@sakri.in.

www.asusservice.in


channel chief “We see huge headroom for growth” Nitin Hiranandani, Director, Printing, PPS, HP India, spoke to Dhaval Valia about the company’s new partner programs and its plans for the office and consumer printing market It’s been over six months since the integration of the PC and printer business. Have the objectives of the integrated unit been met? Post-integration there have been several benefits for partners and customers. The integrated division helps us reach customers with bundled offerings and promotions in both the consumer and commercial segments. We have launched a new program whereby partners earn additional margins for bundling PCs and printers. We first trialed this program at the HP Worlds, and having seen success we are broadening the scope to other partners. In the commercial space, organizations which were PC or printing customers are now being reached with the never-before leverage of the combined portfolio.

As the PC market shrinks, the printer market is also shrinking. What are HP’s plans for growing the printer market? I don’t think the Indian printer market is anywhere close to shrinking. In the home segment, we see huge headroom for growth because the PC-printer connect ratio in India is still very low, particularly in smaller cities where many are buying their first notebook and printer. What we are also witnessing is that more families are recognizing the value of home printing for educational needs. The other key factor driving consumer demand is the availability of technologies such as ePrint and Wireless Direct, which allow users to print from their smartphones or tablets. Our research shows that people tend to value a printer more when it is easy and convenient to print. The third factor is affordable printing, and here our Ink Advantage printers and consumables are finding strong acceptance. HP’s strategy to introduce cartridges for the Ink Advantage series costing `449 with a yield of 600 pages has brought down the cost per page to 75 paise. As a result, in just over two years, Ink Advantage printers have seen exponential growth and today they

“I don’t think the Indian printer market is anywhere close to shrinking. In the home segment, we see huge headroom for growth because the PC-printer connect ratio in India is still very low”

account for nearly 40 percent of our total India inkjet shipments. With the success of Ink Advantage our marketshare in inkjets has moved up to 60 percent.

What is your outlook for the office printing segment? From a GTM perspective, we have different strategies for SMBs and enterprises, both of which have distinct requirements and expectations. In the SMB segment we are aggressively targeting 6,000 midmarket named accounts, each with an employee strength of 100-499 users. This alone presents a total market opportunity of $70 million for HP. Last year we launched four new printing solutions targeted at SMBs that allow them to manage their printers, eliminate waste and reduce printing costs. These tools existed in our enterprise range of products and have been scaled down for SMBs. One such tool is Access Control Express, which allows SMBs to track and control printer usage by individual users or departments. We have trained nearly 20 partners to sell and implement these tools and solutions. The solutions are finding strong acceptance among SMBs because they provide instant RoI. Earlier this year we introduced the new Partner Managed Print Services program to target opportunities in SMBs. For large enterprises, while we continue to focus on MPS, we have recently launched the cloud-enabled Flow multifunction printers to increase printing efficiency. These workflow-capable MFPs aim to change the way businesses capture, digitize, manage, consume and share data. We are confident that Flow MFPs will contribute more to our enterprise business this year. From the technology perspective we see a huge opportunity in business inkjets. Recently we launched the Officejet Pro X range which offers savings of up to 50 percent on printing and energy as compared to laser printers. These printers also deliver faster printing speed and faster first-page-out compared to lasers. On the laser front, we have strengthened our position with better execution of our SMB strategy. This has given us a consistent 50 percent marketshare over the past few quarters. One of our product successes in the laser category is the LaserJet Pro M1218nfs, which is the world’s first MFP with a built-in wireless hotspot. It allows eight devices of different form factors to connect to it and access the

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channel chief Internet, and is a success among SOHOs and SMBs.

Could you elaborate on the recently launched MPS partner program aimed at SMBs? According to Gartner, the MPS market size is expected to exceed $10 billion worldwide by 2013 from around $7 billion in 2010. According to AMI Partners, currently about 18 percent of the total printing business from SMBs in India comes from MPS which is estimated to grow to almost 60 percent by 2015. Just like large enterprises, SMBs are now demanding MPS because it allows them to move from a capex to an opex model and also provides savings of up to 20 percent on printing costs. That’s why we recently launched the Partner Managed Print Services program. Under this, SMB customers will sign an MPS contract with our partners with HP-defined SLAs. We in turn will provide all the backend support to partners to meet the SLAs. We have trained and enabled 20 partners to offer MPS to SMBs.

What are the new programs launched by HP under the new PPS structure? Starting last November we have introduced linearity as a built-in rebate under PFR, our flagship partner incentive program. This has been introduced to provide those partners incentives who sustain the momentum of HP products in the market every day. Further, we have introduced extra incentives for product-specialist partners. An inkjet specialist, for instance, can earn over-riding incentives on achieving targets. With an integrated solutions portfolio, HP has made its pricing strategies easier to understand. We are placing emphasis on enabling partners to sell solutions and not just push boxes. We have also introduced a sell-out model for our inkjet printers to enable partners to deal in HP printers without having to stock them. We own the flow of material across the value chain. From tier-1 to tier-2 our area sales team manages the flow, while from tier-2 to tier-3 it is facilitated by field staff and from tier-3 to customer it is facilitated by the in-shop promoters. For the last-mile sell-out we have employed

“Just like large enterprises, SMBs are now demanding MPS to move from a capex to an opex model and also provides savings of up to 20 percent on printing costs” 80 in-shop promoters whose job it is to help the endcustomer make the right purchase decision. These 80 promoters are helping 8,000 partners every month. Starting May 2013, we are launching a renewed consumer outreach program for the Ink Advantage portfolio with Pogo, the kids’ channel. We are also partnering with The Times of India to reach out to students in hundreds of schools across six cities over six months.

Could you tell us something about HP’s geoexpansion strategies? Greater growth opportunity for printers exists in tier-2 and tier-3 cities where a lot of people are buying their first PC and a home printer together. In these cities demand is also coming from businesses which are increasingly adopting technology and need an MFP for the office. For consumer inkjets, last year we identified 22 cities where our internal analysis suggested strong growth opportunities.

Finally, what is HP doing or planning to do to fight counterfeits? The proliferation of counterfeits is growing, and is hurting the trust of our customers and partners. We are challenging the market penetration of counterfeit cartridges across customer segments through a big customer and channel education program. We recently introduced an HP Sure Supply app for mobile devices supporting Android, iOS and Windows 8 to make the ordering of original supplies convenient. With the app, customers can check for and receive alerts for low ink or toner levels, order the cartridges they need, and authenticate the cartridge received with the mobile device. Further, we have introduced products like HP Officejet Pro AIOs which offer the same cost per page as refills. We are also reviving the Original Cartridge Store program. n

Consistent Credible Clear Competent Compassionate Communicative CRN Creative CRN – the 8th C of Channel Marketing 14

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cover story

a natural

Progression

With its existing customer base and IT skill-sets, venturing into the physical security market is a natural progression for the IT channel. Not only is it growing at a faster rate than the IT market, but also offers significantly higher margins n Amit Singh

T

Technology Manager, Dax Networks, believes that he physical security and access control (PS) since the majority of PS projects are on IP, IT partners market is a good opportunity for IT partners can play a major role with expertise in networking, who are faced with declining profit margins. servers and storage. They already have As a market primarily driven a captive customer base. by government guidelines and rising inside the cover story Adds Manoj Khadkikar, Head, crime, the PS market offers twice the Channel & Distribution, Zicom margins compared to IT. † Opportunities in the 19 Electronic Security Systems, “Many According to Frost & Sullivan, the commercial segment IT partners who were earlier pushing `3,250 crore Indian PS market, which † High margins attracted CNT 20 boxes are now providing security includes video surveillance, access † MKI bets big on physical 20 solutions to customers. Small offices, control, intrusion detection and metal security banks, jewelry and mobile stores, and detectors, is expected to witness 20-22 † Innovative’s first-mover 21 housing societies can be focus areas for percent CAGR till 2016. advantage tier-2 and -3 partners.” “The video surveillance market, at † 5 tips to kick start your 22 physical security practice We present the opportunities in about `1,300 crore, constitutes about † Opportunities in home, SOHO 23 PS for both large commercial partners 40 percent of the total PS market, and, and micro-business according to Assocham, will cross who can target the midmarket and † Futech taps housing societies 23 `2,200 crore by 2015,” says Debraj large enterprises, and for smaller and shops Dam, VP, Strategic Business & Partner resellers and retailers who can target † Maa Trading Company offers 24 Alliance, Digisol. opportunities among homes, SOHO and rental services for Navratri Subhashini Ramakrishnan, Chief small businesses. Read on.

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cover story Opportunities in the commercial segment With several incidents of terrorism and rising crime, law enforcement is a major factor driving the adoption of physical security in the commercial segment, which is estimated at $500 million opportunity

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he commercial segment is leading the PS market with a growth rate of 30 percent YoY. According to industry estimates, the commercial segment accounts for the majority of the PS market estimated at $650 million. “It contributes about $500 million to the total PS market,” informs Ranjit Nambiar, Director, Sales, IAM, HID Global, India & Saarc. With several incidents of terrorist or militant strikes and rising crime, law enforcement is a major factor driving the adoption of PS solutions in the commercial segment. “While there is a general guideline for all new commercial buildings to install PS systems, the police are encouraging its adoption even by shops. The police in TN and Maharashtra are also discouraging the filing of FIRs by commercial establishments where security systems are not installed,” informs Subhashini

Ramakrishnan, Chief Technology Manager, Dax Networks. Adds Anand Navani, Country Manager, VIS, Verint, “The government is driving wider deployment of video surveillance in major cities such as Delhi, Mumbai, Pune and Bengaluru. The Surat Safe City project is a major initiative. Also, there are clear directives for highly sensitive areas like airports, sea-ports, dams, and oil & gas depots to install PS solutions.” Nambiar believes that the government will remain the single biggest spender on PS solutions. The focus now is on disaster proofing and creating a command and control center. Sectors such as public transport, hospitality, airports and BFSI will be seen investing heavily in security. Retail will also be seen investing in surveillance because it can double as a source of business intelligence.

Video getting smarter The video surveillance market is experiencing a major shift toward IP-based solutions. Although the industry is still dominated by analog solutions with IP surveillance holding about 30 percent share, the demand for IP-based solutions is growing. “We expect IP to come on par in the next 2-3 years. In fact, most of the new installations are on IP,” says Sudhindra Holla, Country Manager, Axis Communications, India. He explains that with the

“The police in TN and Maharashtra are discouraging the filing of FIRs by commercial establishments where security systems are not installed”

addition of video analytics to surveillance solutions, enterprises are adopting these solutions to get a new perspective into their businesses. “IP surveillance with high-resolution cameras and analytics is the in-thing,” informs Moin Shaikh, Director, Innovative Telecom & Softwares. “Analytics such as face recognition, people counting, motion and loitering detection, and sound detection are readily used by corporates and in verticals like IT-ITeS and gems & jewelry. Government, in its safe city projects, is utilizing face recognition, crowd management features and license-plate reading for the detection of traffic rules violations and crimes.” “Although only 7-10 percent of the customers opt for these solutions, the second level of growth will come from large campuses, factories and retail,” forecasts Ramakrishnan. “In fact, video surveillance is now becoming a productivity enhancement tool. Customers are interested in monitoring the productivity of their workforce.” Another trend picking up in video surveillance is remote monitoring. “Currently, less than 5 percent of customers opt for remote monitoring, but since the bandwidth requirement for video streaming has been reduced to as low as 64 Kbps per camera by advanced technology we expect increased uptake in the next 2-3 years,” she says. Delhi-based MK Infosystems implemented a remote monitoring solution worth `35 lakh for a project of GVK Power & Infrastructure in Srinagar (Pauri Garhwal). “The company HO in Hyderabad was having trouble with accident management and monitoring the progress of the project. We implemented eight PTZ cameras, wireless connectivity, and a central control room for them,” informs Manoj Bisht, CEO, MK. Navani says that while a few highend schools have already introduced remote monitoring of buses for the safety of their children, many other schools and universities are in the process of installing these systems.

Digital access Increased security breaches and terrorist strikes have heightened awareness about access control. A shift is taking place from proximity cards to

“The government is driving wider deployment of video surveillance in Delhi, Mumbai, Pune and Bengaluru. The Surat Safe City project is a major initiative”

Subhashini Ramakrishnan

Anand Navani

Chief Technology Manager, Dax Networks

Country Manager, VIS, Verint

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cover story “Many new offices are installing biometric solutions and two-factor authentication. Even SMBs with as few as 25 employees are opting for these solutions” Yogesh Dutta

VP, Security Business, Aditya Infotech

biometrics and two-factor authentication including both biometrics and smart cards. “SMBs and enterprises are accepting these solutions and integrating them with attendance management. Many new offices are installing biometric solutions and two-factor authentication at restricted places. Even SMBs with as few as 25 employees as well as a few SOHO customers are opting for these solutions,” says Yogesh Dutta, VP, Security Business, Aditya Infotech. “While the installed base of biometric solutions is still about 30 percent, more than 70 percent of the new installations are on smart cards and biometrics,” says

“Malls, theaters, corporate hubs and many housing societies are using addressable systems due to their ability to pin-point the origin of the fire or smoke” Vinod Bhatheja

VP, Tech Support, Geo Integrators

Nambiar. “Moreover, there is no price difference between a proximity card and a smart card solution.” The Delhi-based Computers Network & Telecom (CNT) recently implemented an access control project with two-factor authentication and smart cards for GLS Industries, a manufacturer of flexible packaging products and laminates. “The project included implementation of smart card-based access control at 18 doors, IP surveillance with 100 high-end cameras, and a data center. We also enabled remote monitoring of the plant from the HO in Gurgaon through smartphones, tablets and notebooks for 40 senior executives,” informs

High margins attracted CNT

MKI bets big on physical security

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elhi-based SI, Computers Network & Telecom (CNT) entered the PS business in 2011. “Initially, customer demand made us look at this business. Our interest increased when we saw higher margins compared to IT. Being a solution-based business which is not yet commoditized, it offers twice the margins—or even more—compared to IT,” reveals Dipesh Mangla, Director, CNT. CNT thus identified PS as a high opportunity area, started building technical skills, and formed a separate team. “We began with a team of two engineers and focused on existing customers. We also started taking up access control and surveillance assignments in our data center projects,” Mangla says. CNT currently has a team of five engineers and has completed about 20 projects in PS in the last two years. Some of its major customers include GLS Industries, Monnet Ispat and Amity University. The company recently implemented a large IP surveillance Dipesh Mangla and access control project for GLS Industries. “The project included the implementation of smart card-based access control at 18 doors, IP surveillance with 100 cameras, and a data center,” details Mangla. “Currently, the PS business contributes about 10 percent of our total revenue; we will take it to about 15 percent in the current fiscal. We are now focusing on education, manufacturing and the IT-ITeS verticals,” he says. n

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Initially, customer demand made us look at PS. Our interest increased when we saw that it offered twice the margins—or even more— compared to IT”

While PS contributed 10 percent to our business 3 years back, it accounted for 35 percent of the turnover in the last fiscal. In this fiscal we expect it to contribute 50 percent”

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uring the slowdown in 2008, Delhi-based MK Infosystems (MKI) ventured into the PS business to broaden its portfolio and leveraged its IT customer base to offer IP installations as a value-add. MKI tied up with Infinova and Pelco, and leveraged its large base of customers. “We hired two engineers for PS, identified three resources internally, and focused on training. We attended all the vendor trainings and invested about `15 lakh in training and PoCs. Creating a PoC helped us to demonstrate the effectiveness of our offerings and convinced prospects. Although it pinched in the beginning, it paid heavily later,” recalls Manoj Bisht, CEO, MKI. MKI took several small projects from existing customers. Informs Bisht, “Our initial project was from ICICI where we placed 8-10 IP cameras at few of its branches. Later the project got bigger and we implemented IP surveillance in 80 of its branches over two years.” MKI implemented a remote monitoring project worth `80 lakh with about 30 IP cameras, wireless Manoj Bisht networking and a data center at Terminal 3, Delhi Airport, which was outsourced by L&T. MKI currently has a team of 40 people focussed on PS, and projects under implementation include those at ONGC, Wipro, BEL and Parliament House. “While PS contributed about 10 percent to our business three years back, it accounted for 35 percent of the turnover in the last fiscal. In the current fiscal we expect it to contribute almost 50 percent,” says Bisht. n


cover story Dipesh Mangla, Director, CNT. The convergence of physical and logical access is an emerging trend to improve security by enabling a single smart card to support multiple authentication methods. For instance, physical access credentials can be re-used for logical access including strong desktop authentication. Conversely, logical access credentials can help drive robust identity authentication at the door. “Companies with many offices and a mobile workforce are adopting converged access solutions that let them login and logout on the PCs as well. We expect increased acceptance in a couple of years with the spread of mobility and BYOD,” states Nambiar, adding, “We are implementing such solutions at Infosys and are also looking for some large hospital chains.”

Pin-pointing fire Fire safety is seeing a move from conventional analog systems to addressable digital systems. “Conventional systems are good for small premises and are therefore adopted by small showrooms, factories and commercial buildings. However, large premises such as malls, theaters, corporate hubs and a few housing societies are using addressable systems due to their ability to pin-point the origin of the fire or smoke,” explains Vinod Bhatheja, VP, Tech Support, at the Surat-based Geo Integrators. While conventional systems can detect fire at the zone level, addressable systems can identify the zone as well as the detector that sensed the smoke or fire. Digital systems also have detectors which sense heat and trigger alarms only when the heat rises above the set temperature. “Moreover, digital systems can be integrated with access control systems whereby all the doors will automatically open in case of a fire. They can also be linked with water sprinklers in large manufacturing units with inflammable substances. In some cases, people use ATD dialers that automatically dial pre-saved numbers in case of a fire,” continues Bhatheja. However, Shaikh points out that fire safety is mainly driven by the need to comply with government guidelines. “All commercial buildings and multi-storey residential buildings are required to have fire safety measures, but most of them resort to analog solutions which have low sensitivity and cannot locate the origin of the fire. Most people install them just for the sake of compliance, and in many cases the fire safety systems are not working.”

Tracking assets The GPS market has tremendous potential for growth driven by its increasing acceptance by both government and private players for fleet management and surveillance. The police are using it to keep track of their patrolling vans, while transport departments are implementing GPS in buses and auto-rickshaws for the protection of commuters. Many schools are now using GPS for the security of students and to track school buses. Additionally, many private players are using GPS

Innovative’s first-mover advantage

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oin Shaikh and Mihir Chahwala, Directors of the Suratbased Innovative Telecom & Softwares, took the path less traveled by IT partners during the beginning of 2007. “We entered the PS business at a time when most partners treated it as a separate domain. We however identified it as an area with healthier margins compared to IT. Since IP was generating demand among the new installations we thought of leveraging our solution-based approach,” explains Shaikh. The company formed an infrastructure solutions division and invested heavily in training and PoCs. Shaikh reveals, “We created PoCs for every solution and ensured that customers did not end up making the wrong investment. In all, we made an investment of about `45 lakh in the first two years.” Innovative faced stiff competition from analog solutions but managed to bag projects from existing customers. Says Shaikh, “We educated customers about the benefits of IP. We had a large base of diamond dealers as customers Moin Shaikh who had ample money to spend, so we focused on them and initially bagged three projects.” In 2009 the company started focusing on enterprise customers in verticals such as manufacturing and hospitality. Innovative also took on large projects and started offering IBMS solutions to the diamond industry. The company has implemented 15 IBMS projects in the last two years in Surat. Innovative recently completed the implementation of the first phase of the Surat Safe City project costing `10.5 crore. This included installation of 104 CCTV cameras, a command and control center, a data center with 200 TB storage, and a physical security information management system. n

We entered the PS business at a time when most partners treated it as a separate domain. We however identified it as an area with healthier margins compared to IT” solutions for fleet management. Explains Mangla, “They are interested in the time management of their fleet so that their drivers do not waste time on their way to or from their destinations. GPS also lets them streamline their processes and plan the routes.” CNT has implemented two large GPS projects in the last six months. It implemented a GPS system in 300 taxis and established the data center valued at `48 lakh for G-Cabs in Gurgaon. “The system enables the company to locate its taxis and assign them to the incoming customer calls. We also implemented a GPS solution in 60 trailers of Baroda Freight Carriers and are operating it as a service. While we took `8,000 per vehicle for installation, we are charging `1,000 per month per vehicle for GPS services,” discloses Mangla.

Intelligent buildings There is a strong trend toward the integration of once-

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cover story tips to kick start your physical security practice

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uilding a physical security practice is not very different from building specialization within other technology domains. In fact for IT partners, this should be a logical progression to their IT solutions business. Here are five tips which can help kick start your physical security practice. Expertise to bet on A project in this domain will require skills that are complementary to some of the technology areas such as data center implementation, campus-wide structured cabling, IP security, storage and infrastructure management services. Hence most vendors are interested in talking to partners with expertise in these areas. “Infrastructure partners understand customer requirements better, and network specialists usually posses knowledge of the IP protocol which makes it easier for them to deploy effective physical security solutions,” explains Ranjit Nambiar, Director, HID India. Start with IT vendors Many IT vendors have started physical security practices or have products that can drive business. Some of the partners who have successfully set physical security practice say it’s better to leverage on IT vendors. “We started working closely with Cisco’s practice teams that address building management business. We have successfully completed half a dozen projects, where our USP was knowledge of Cisco product line and ability to integrate the same with security cameras and access control product lines of traditional PS vendors,” explains AL Srinath, CEO, Shell Networks. Vertical approach matters Since security demand of each vertical is different, it’s natural for

separate systems such as video surveillance, access control, fire safety and incident response. An intelligent building management system (IBMS) is readily taken up by large enterprises and corporate hubs which want to streamline and automate their in-house systems. “Almost all corporate hubs in metro cities are going in for IBMS solutions where they integrate temperature control and public announcements as well,” says Bisht. MK Infosystems has also bagged a project for installation of an IBMS solution for ONGC in Delhi. “We are providing installation services in this project for a bottomline of `75 lakh,” he discloses.

Services become lucrative AMC and managed services for PS is a fairly lucrative business for partners. “It contributes almost 15 percent of our PS business. As the dependence is huge, customers hesitate to move to another vendor due to security reasons. The AMC business offers an 8-10 percent increase every year. Moreover, failure rates are very low because we take up projects with end-to-end implementation for networking, server, storage and PS,” explains Bisht. A new trend which will gain prominence is video surveillance-as-a-service (VSaaS). “It will enable

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an IT partner to seek customers within the verticals they have been selling to. “Your customers would already know your implementation skills and it is easy to convince them for value addition. Also you will have an understanding of their business requirements,” shares Yogesh Dutta, Vice President, Security Business, Aditya Infotech. Cross domain engineering expertise While some IT skills are good starting points, most vendors point out that the SI should build cross-domain engineering expertise across all branches of engineering. “For example, if you are targeting customers who are looking for campus-wide surveillance, then you must have expertise to effectively design and, if needed, make alterations to existing structures to run cables. For deploying enterprise fire security systems you may require basic knowledge of hydraulics. These skill-sets are easy to acquire especially for partners who already have strong skill-sets in the IT domain,” says Sunil Sahdev, MD, Security Defense Systems, Delhi. Knowledge of laws Johnson Lopez, CEO of Bengaluru-based Futuristik Control Networks, has made a successful transition from a purely IT channel player to a fire security solutions provider over the past decade. “We have learnt the hard way that sometimes lack of knowledge of several laws laid out by various bodies such as local police, civic bodies, and electricity departments can get you into trouble, or even disqualify you from tenders. Any solutions provider in the space need to have an understanding of these rules and bye-laws,” says Lopez. n

customers to use surveillance solutions for their homes and businesses just the way they use telephones and electricity. It enables users to limit their capital expenditure and allows security departments to focus on their core competencies,” says Holla. VSaaS is in a nascent stage, with opportunities for very large players and telecom service providers. “Hosted video solutions will become a trend that can be leveraged by small cloud service providers,” predicts Anant Deshpande, Business Development Manager, Enterprise, Cisco, India & Saarc. “A hosted solution limits the investment to a network camera and an Internet connection instead of having to maintain a recording and monitoring system locally.”

Conclusion Besides the market leading trends in remote monitoring, analytics, smart card-based access, fire safety, GPS, IBMS and managed services, the PS market offers the tempting proposition of double-digit margins. “The PS business is unique in terms of its number of untapped opportunities as well as high margins. Being a solutionbased business which is not yet commoditized, it offers twice the margins (or even more) compared to IT,” according to Mangla. n


cover story Opportunities in home, SOHO and micro-business Small resellers can tap several opportunities in these segments which are estimated at `750 crore and growing at 35 percent CAGR

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ccording to an industry estimate, the Indian home and SOHO safety and security market— which includes video surveillance, video phone devices, fingerprint locks, fire & gas detection systems and intrusion alarm systems— was worth around `750 crore in 2012. The segment is expected to grow at a CAGR of 35 percent for the next four years. PS adoption in the SOHO segment is witnessing high growth due to the business benefits of video surveillance, especially remote monitoring which has been identified as a productivity enhancement tool by shop owners. Adoption in the home segment is driven by increasing crime, especially against elders and children. “The home segment has seen the adoption of fire safety measures, and video surveillance has become mandatory in certain housing societies. Moreover, many housing societies and real estate players are adopting access control and apartment-level surveillance,” says Sanjay Sehgal, VP, Enterprise & Project Business, D-Link India.

“Video surveillance has become mandatory in certain housing societies, and real estate players are adopting access control and apartment-level surveillance” Sanjay Sehgal

VP, Enterprise & Project Business, D-Link

Zicom, Dax, Axis, Digisol and D-Link are some of the companies riding this bandwagon.

Moving to IP A major trend in the home safety and security market is that consumers are moving from analog to IP cameras. “The pace is slow because of the cost difference, but the advantages of IP are many,” says Subhashini Ramakrishnan, Chief Technology Manager, Dax Networks. Manoj Khadkikar, Head, Channels & Distribution, Zicom, says that although the price difference is now three times when compared to analog, as the demand for IP solutions grows there will be economies of scale and the cost of IP cameras may even come down. Parag Shah, CEO, Futech Computers, says that “Statutory compliance and general security concerns are forcing jewelers and other shop owners to buy IP cameras. Even housing societies and independent homes are buying CCTVs and intrusion prevention solutions to protect against theft.” The company recently installed IP cameras for a large housing society comprising 10 buildings at Mahavir Nagar, Kandivli, a north Mumbai suburb. Some consumers are seeking wireless devices to avoid clutter and also because these devices have low maintenance. Remote monitoring of the kids’ room is a trend picking up among mid- and high-income families where both parents are working. “Remote monitoring is finding higher acceptance

Futech taps housing societies and shops

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umbai-based Futech Computers, which retails require every shop to have surveillance cameras notebooks, components and peripherals, or face penalties. Security and safety concerns ventured into physical security (PS) in 2011. In just are also forcing housing societies to deploy PS solutions,” informs Shah. over two years, PS accounted for 20 percent of the Futech recently installed IP surveillance for a company’s total revenues in FY2012-13. Futech has signed up with brands like CP Plus, large housing society comprising ten buildings, in Avik Technologies, Hikvision, Dahua and Autocop Mahavir Nagar, Kandivali, a north Mumbai suburb. for video surveillance, fire security and intrusion “Using this as reference we are pitching to other neighboring societies and will soon close couple of prevention. deals,” says Shah. Parag Shah, CEO, Futech, says, “Many of our small business and home customers started asking The company expects to double its revenue from for help to install surveillance devices. We did a PS business during this fiscal. “Over the next 3-4 Parag Shah couple of such installations on an experimental basis years, our PS business would be of the same size as but soon word-of-mouth spread and hence we decided to start a the IT business. It offers wider opportunity and margins than the separate PS practice.” IT business where unhealthy competition and market saturation Futech’s customers range from small shops, housing is limiting growth,” concludes Shah. n societies to small offices. “Today, the compliance procedures

Over the next 3-4 years, our PS business will be the same size as the IT business. It offers wider opportunity and better margins than the IT business”

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cover story MTC offers rental services for Navratri

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adodara-based Maa Trading Company (MTC) has come a long way since starting a physical security (PS) business four years back. Says Paurav Chokshi, CEO, MTC, “When I ventured into the business, it contributed only 5 percent to the turnover. However, we closed FY2012-13 at `8 crore, and PS business was the main contributor at 25 percent.” PS business was a natural progression to MTC’s networking business. “We were providing networking solutions to small businesses who began asking for PS due to statutory requirements,” says Chokshi. MTC has tie-ups with various vendors like Dahua, Hikvision, CP Plus, D-Link, and have recently signed on Cheetah Networks that offer server cabinets to prevent unauthorized access to critical IT equipment. MTC’s customers range from small shops to even large companies. “Last year, we deployed 200 IP cameras across 200 showrooms of Honda City for a project worth `12 lakh. Soon we got a similar order from Skoda. We are now targeting companies that have large franchise footprint,” opines Paurav Chokshi Chokshi. MTC also works with resellers and pays them referral fee if they help them win business. “We work with 60 resellers who give us qualified leads. Once the lead becomes a deal, we give them 5 percent of contract value. Nearly 60 percent of our PS business came from reseller-driven references,” Chokshi informs. He says that other seasonal but big business is providing PS on rentals during Navratri. “Last year, we offered PS on rental to many mandals for surveillance solutions during the nine days.” Besides a dedicated team of six persons, MTC has invested in a van which commutes the team across project sites. With IP surveillance being supported on smartphones, Chokshi says that the demand for surveillance is increasing. “In the past six months we have sold several solutions to small business, shops and homes showing them the benefits of remote monitoring.” The company is targeting revenue of `3 crore from the PS business in the current fiscal. n

We recently deployed 200 IP cams across 200 showrooms of Honda City. We are now targeting companies that have large franchise footprint” among SOHO customers and shop owners who monitor their multiple shops remotely through smartphones and tablets. We have done many such implementations through the MyDlink service,” informs Paurav Chokshi, CEO, Maa Trading Company, Vadodra.

Intelligent homes Locking the entrance door is no longer limited to the physical lock and key. People are opting for biometric

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“Smoke and gas detectors are becoming popular because of several fire incidents. The detectors have the ability to send SMSs and place calls to customers” Manoj Khadkikar

Head, Channel & Distribution, Zicom

or sensor-enabled locking systems. “Customers are now demanding video, fingerprint and card-based access. A few of them are moving toward remote monitoring. As soon as somebody knocks on the door or rings the bell the customer gets an SMS or a call on the smartphone and can instantly view who is at the door. This is beneficial in cases where there are children and/or elders at home,” says Ramakrishnan. Some consumers are also opting for intrusion detectors and alarm systems. “People are deploying ultrasonic and vibration sensors at every entry point, including windows. Smoke and gas detectors are also becoming popular because of several fire incidents at home. The detectors have the ability to send SMSs and place calls to pre-defined numbers,” informs Khadkikar. Although the home segment is still lagging in the adoption of intelligent home solutions—it is presently limited to a few high-income families—demand is coming from real estate players offering premium apartments. While intercom solutions are always there in multistorey buildings, the Wadhwa Group has installed Zicom multi-apartment video door phone (VDP) and intrusion and fire alarm systems at its 1,100 premium apartments across India. “There are other companies as well, like the Pune-based Puranik Builders, which have installed similar VDP solutions in their projects. The spending on such technology can start at `3 lakh depending on the number of devices attached,” informs Akshay Sawant, Director, Siddh Tech, a Mumbai-based distributor. A few vendors are offering security solutions as a service to housing societies. Says Khadkikar, “We are creating awareness about the need for security and installing security solutions in housing societies in an opex model. We have secured more than 1,000 societies in Mumbai, and are now also focusing on Navi Mumbai and Pune. We ensure that the products are working 24x7.”

Conclusion The fact that the home and SOHO market for PS is growing at the highest rate (though with a small base) presents a huge opportunity for IT partners. “Tier-3 partners like retailers and resellers can leverage their base of customers buying PCs and peripherals. They can also package surveillance and access products with their PC sales. The need is to gain competency in smallscale deployments. The solution-focused approach always offers healthier margins than box selling,” asserts Sawant. n — Inputs from Sonal Desai & Ramdas S


special focus Centers of opportunity Despite the slowdown in overall IT spends, the data center market continues to be strong thanks to technology refresh, virtualization and private cloud deployments n SONAL DESAI & RAMDAS S

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rapid revolution has been taking place in the data center (DC) market that spells newer opportunities for partners. DC customers are seeking more efficiency in running their DCs, and are trying to optimize usage and deploy newer technology. “Energy-efficient DCs will be a major focus for companies in the future. With IT costs spiraling down, most companies look for solutions that can help them fulfill their IT needs with minimum budgets,” says Amit Luthra, National Manager, Storage & Networking, Dell India.

Technology refresh Some of the biggest partner opportunities are the technology refresh cycles emerging inside DCs which were set up around 3-5 years back. Also, many customers who skipped investing in technology refresh over the past few years because of the slowdown see that technology refresh is imperative over the next 12 months. “We are going after several of our existing customers who have an old DC infrastructure. For a customer who is running a DC based on equipment purchased in 2008, upgrading to the latest hardware would result in RoI within a year in operational cost savings,” explains KV Jagannath, CEO, Choice Solutions. Upgrading power and cooling equipment has a direct impact on the running cost of a DC. According to a report by US environmental protection agency Energy Star, the average loss of energy efficiency for power systems is between 11 and 35 percent every year. This has prompted vendors such as Emerson, Schneider, Numeric, IBM and Eaton to set up teams and even practices around DC efficiency. Jayabalan Velayudhan, Director, IT Business India, APC by Schneider Electric, explains, “Some of our partners have been trained to consult specifically on energy and cooling efficiencies. Their teams can provide customers specific reports that would give customers a bird’s-eye view of energy utilization, and also advise on strategies for reducing energy waste.” “We had recently proved to a customer that he would get a RoI within a year if he upgraded his five-year-old

“We are going after existing customers who have old DC infrastructure promising them that upgrading to the latest hardware will result in RoI within a year” KV Jagannath

CEO, Choice Solutions

batteries and UPS systems. In the DC business to stay relevant you need to keep upgrading, and this presents the biggest opportunity for a partner,” says AS Rajgopal, MD, NxtGen Datacenter & Cloud Services. Technology refresh is not only limited to power and cooling. “Upgrading older racks to newer blades saves real estate and power consumption; besides, newer processors are able to virtualize better, spawning more virtual machines per blade,” explains Luthra. Many partners lost out in grabbing large DCs especially from the government deals earlier. However, since customers are improving DC efficiency through a series of smaller projects, smaller partners are benefiting. “Existing DC customers are looking at smarter partners like us when it comes to upgrading infrastructure,” says Jeyalakshmi Venkatanarayanan, CEO, Universe Power Systems, Bengaluru. “They are also talking to us for implementing alternate energy solutions in alternative energy sources such as solar.”

Server rooms The biggest opportunity, especially for tier-2 channels, has been the 1,00,000+ server rooms spread across SMBs, governments and even enterprise customers. These server rooms are estimated to be between 30 and 500 square feet of area that are designated as server rooms. “Unlike proper DCs, most server rooms are not more than a designated room to consolidate infrastructure. They are cluttered, under-utilized and use inefficient power and cooling including traditional ACs instead of precision cooling,” explains Gurudutt M, Director, Transaction Business, Schneider Electric. APC by Schneider has recently launched a DC-in-a-box called InfraStruxure (ISX) which consists of pre-cabled

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special focus “Virtualization-led consolidation is a common thread across most DCs, as CIOs are becoming increasingly concerned about cost optimization and business continuity”

“Solar panel costs are coming down, and we will soon see an inflection point where the capex associated with solar power will be meaningful to IT customers”

Naresh Singh

L Ashok

Principal Research Analyst, Gartner

racks, modular cooling and UPS. APC estimates a market size of `1,000 crore this year for DC-in-a-box solutions. Meanwhile, Emerson is also expected to launch its answer to ISX in June this year. At the same time, several channel partners are taking up the concept and developing similar solutions. “We offer custom solutions for which we source best-of-breed products from Eaton and others which are cheaper than competing brands,” says Jaya Shetty, Director, Grid Power Conversion. Partners are able to gain space for customers as some of these integrated units occupy floor space of just eight square feet.

Virtualization and cloud The biggest trend in DCs is the demand to virtualize infrastructure and the rush toward the cloud. “A virtualization-led consolidation strategy seems to be the common thread across most DCs, and Indian DC managers are becoming increasingly concerned about cost optimization and business continuity,” says Naresh Singh, Principal Research Analyst, Gartner. Virtualization is not just happening on servers. Storage, security and networking elements are also increasingly getting virtualized. VMware has already been touting the concept of software defined DCs (SDDCs) as the future of DCs. “Rather than mask the inherent rigidity of specialized hardware, our SDDC strategy ensures that virtualization principles of pooling, abstraction and automation are applied to storage, networking, security and availability,” explains Ganesan Arumugam, Director, Channels & Alliances, VMware India. Software defined networking, which offers programmatic interfaces to network hardware through software APIs, is also taking center place. “Today we can enable automated provisioning on switches through software, and our Cisco Open Net Environment is being used by partners while automating DCs,” explains Ashok Shenoy, VP, Data Center, Cisco India. Another trend that’s revolutionizing the DC is desktop virtualization and BYOD. “Studies reveal that most customers implementing BYOD or VDI are revamping DCs or are opting for technology refresh,” Shenoy adds. For SIs specialized in different areas of virtualization, this means revenue from both consulting services as well as selling new solutions to existing DCs. Explains Ashwin Waknis, Senior Solution Strategist, CA Technologies, “Indian customers do not want to scrap existing DCs while migrating to the cloud. They are looking to build efficiencies, and optimize. Partners who

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CEO, Futurenet Group

can help them on their path with consulting will grab business.”

Low power compute “I believe the biggest revolution happening in DCs is also on the compute side as vendors are figuring out innovative ways to bring down the power consumption of hardware,” explains Vasudevan Subramanian, MD, NewWave Computing, Bengaluru. AMD is expected to launch SeaMicro, its high density server solution, later this year in the country. The chip vendor is also expected to launch new Opteron chips in 2014 based on low power ARM cores. Meanwhile, HP has launched Project Moonshot, shipping its first 4.3 U rack with 45 Intel Atom S1200 processors with a thermal footprint of less than 3 KW. Says Abhijit Kotnis, Director, Technology Solutions, EMC, “We are bringing down infrastructure costs by switching to both green drives in large storage boxes and flash drives for high performance storage.”

Renewable energy The biggest trend globally in the DC market is the search for cheaper and cleaner energy sources. “There will be a consulting and brokering practice around providing electricity from green resources that partners can specialize in,” explains Rajagopal of NxtGen. With traditional power through government agencies, many DCs are negotiating with private power companies. UPS vendors have already started shipping solar power products. Many partners have set up renewable energy consulting ventures. Chennai-based Futurenet Technologies has recently set up a subsidiary to consult on solar projects. “Many DCs will come up in remote locations where resources are cheaper. Solar power panel costs are coming down, and we will soon see an inflection point where the capex associated with solar power will actually be meaningful to our IT customers,” explains L Ashok, CEO, Futurenet.

Road ahead The DC market so far has offered limited opportunities to the majority of tier-2 channels. But with technology refresh and the need for compact micro DC solutions the market has opened. With cloud and virtualization taking center-stage, specialists in these domains have bigger scope. Finally, there are expectations of major upgrades on the compute infrastructure side which will throw in more opportunities. Renewable energy and green IT will widen the scope for channels in the space. n


22-24 AUGUST 2013 THE LEELA, KOVALAM

TRANSFORM YOUR BUSINESS THROUGH CRN LEADERSHIP SUMMIT Best platform to interact & network with India’s leading tier-2 systems integrators and enterprise VARs.

The 3 day summit is strategically planned to create multiple networking and interactive opportunities.

CXOs of the leading enterprise VAR organizations are handpicked through a comprehensive awards nomination process, from across 15 cities.

The most coveted awards in the channel industry. Nominations Open

To know about CRN Leadership Summit, log on to www.crn.in/lsummit For partnership opportunities: Anees Ahmed +91 9845032170 North: Sanjay Khandelwal +91 9811764515 | South: Kangkan Mahanta +91 89712 32344 West: Ranabir Das +91 98200 97606 | Marvin Dalmeida +91 88980 22365 Powered by

Organised by


market focus Limited upside for PC assemblers While the PC building market experienced a sharp decline over the past two years, new technologies and the impending launch of Intel’s new processor suggest some positive trends ahead n ABHIJEET MUKHERJEE & RAMDAS S

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artner India says that the system builder market declined from 3.06 million units in 2011 to 2.33 million units in 2012. While Gartner does not track the individual components which are used to build a PC, Vishal Tripathi, Principal Analyst, Gartner India estimates that the PC building block market has seen a similar decline in growth rates. The projections for the assembled PC market for 2013 are around 2 million units. With an estimated upgrade market of around 15 percent, the component market is estimated to be around the size of 2.3 million assembled PCs. Experts put the total size of the component market at `4,600 crore-5,500 crore. “In terms of absolute numbers, the market still offers ample opportunities for thousands of resellers,” says Tripathi. “However, the overall size of the market has shrunk by 40-60 percent over the past 3-4 years.”

Microprocessors The major hope for a revival of the desktop market is the launch of Intel’s fourth-generation Core i architecture code-named Haswell which is expected to be launched in June this year. Intel is driving its white-box PC system builder market ecosystem to focus on two markets, the ultra compact form factor and the PC-like embedded market. For the former space the chip major has announced a new form factor called Next Unit of Computing, and has started shipping the product to partners. “We are committed to ensuring that the system builder market stays alive and thriving. We are also investing in ensuring that new exciting form factors are developed, and are rallying behind OEM suppliers to make technology available faster to our partners,” says B Suryanarayanan, Director, Sales & Marketing, Intel, South Asia. “Apart from small form factors, we are urging channels to look into opportunities in areas such as digital signage, surveillance, PoS and gaming where growth is forecast for white-box PCs.”

Disk drives The disk drive shortage following the floods in Thailand

“We are committed to ensuring that the system builder market stays alive. We are also rallying behind OEMs to make technology available faster to our partners”

“Component markets would not have taken a beating if drive prices had not gone up. While OEMs got supplies at right prices, assemblers had to pay heavily”

B SuryanarayanaN

Sampath Kumar MP

Director, Sales & Marketing, Intel, South Asia

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has been blamed for half the issues in the component market. “I believe that the component markets would not have taken such a beating if drive prices had not gone up. OEMs managed to get supplies at the right prices while assemblers had to pay heavy prices for getting stocks,” points out Sampath Kumar MP, CEO, Positive Systems, Kochi. IHS iSuppli has predicted a decline of 11.8 percent in HDD revenue to $32.7 billion worldwide in 2013 compared to 2012. It further states that the HDD revenue will remain flat in 2014 at $32 billion. The best hope for the disk drive market is the expected demand for SSD drives as SSD prices drop further. “Many customers would prefer to upgrade their drives to SSD which would ensure that their PCs or notebooks run much faster, hence we are urging our channels to sell SSDs as an upgrade option,” says MA Mannan, Country Manager, Corsair Memory, India & Saarc. IHS iSuppli predicts that the average selling price of hard drives will decrease by 7 percent in 2013. At the same time it expect SSD prices to fall by over 60 percent through the year.

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CEO, Positive Systems


market focus “The explosion of digital content is driving the need for storage and flash memory irrespective of whether a person is using a mobile, tablet or notebook”

“As the market matures there will be opportunities in gaming PCs, workstations and other embedded devices. System builders need to find their niche in these areas”

Manisha Sood

Sushmita Das

Country Manager, Sandisk India

Both Seagate and Western Digital have been shipping hybrid drives which use a small capacity SSD for either caching or storing critical data such as the operating system and traditional spinning disks to create larger capacities. While these drives are typically 40-100 percent more expensive than traditional drives, the performance is almost comparable with low-end SSD drives.

Motherboards The biggest news last year was Intel’s announcement of its plans to quit the desktop motherboard market by 2016; this has given hope to many motherboard makers. “Intel dropping out of the motherboard business will help us to grab a bigger share of the market. Going forward we aim to increase our motherboard marketshare from the present 23 percent to 30 percent by 2013-end,” informs Vinay Shetty, Country Manager, Component Business, Asus India. In H22013, the big bet is a transition to the new LGA1150 socket as Haswell processors hit the market. Many partners also expect Intel to cut its production of previous-generation processors to ramp up volumes and accelerate the transition to the new processors by yearend; this would get the motherboard upgrade market moving. Some motherboard vendors are optimistic. Says Rajan Sharma, VP, Sales, Motherboard, Digilite, “We are expecting above-average growth in FY2013-14 if the corporate and SMB segment turn around. Increasing focus on small form factor PCs and penetration into Class B- & C cities will drive the segment.”

Graphics cards According to AMD India, the independent graphics card market is hovering between 1,50,000 to 2,00,000 units, and growing. Says Vikas Gupta, MD, Technology & Gadgets, a Mumbai-based authorized distributor of AMD and Nvidia graphics cards, “We have witnessed a 50 percent increase in our sales compared to early 2012. We used to sell 5,000 units per month, but now, for the last five months, we are selling 7,500 units. The demand is more because of the enriched content from social media sites, YouTube and movie watching, as well as professional use by design and animation studios.” Adds Rajesh Gupta, Country Manager, India, Zotac, “The demand for professional graphics cards is quite high because India is slowly emerging as a destination for creative outsourcing services.”

Memory According to IDC, after an increase of 21.4 percent in

Country Manager, Kobian India

2012, the average growth of DRAM content per PC is expected to decline to a record low of 17.4 percent in 2013. Opportunities in the memory market will be limited to opportunistic players because prices are expected to keep fluctuating. “We do not expect any major transition to happen in the next few quarters as it will be DDR3 only. Opportunities for upgrades remain good, with costs being low especially for notebooks,” says Piyush Pandey, Marketing Manager, Strontium India.

Removable storage The removable storage market is expected to be healthy. “The explosion of digital content is driving the need for more storage and flash memory irrespective of whether a person is using a mobile, tablet or notebook. We see new technologies such as 3-bit-per-cell (X3) also improving the overall reliability of the solution,” says Manisha Sood, Country Manager, SanDisk India. With USB 3.0 slowly becoming a standard option in newer motherboards, PCs and notebooks, Sood expects many users to scrap older USB 2.0 drives and buy new USB 3.0 drives.

ODDs With a shift toward smaller form factors and with the proliferation of Internet broadband, the optical drive market is declining rapidly. The average prices of DVD writers fell to less than `1,000 last year. While further price drops are not expected, channels do not see demand for optical drives as a standard option with PCs. With the faster USB 3.0 media being preferred even for installation of software, the days of optical drives are numbered.

Outlook While the assembled desktop market which fuels the building blocks segment has declined rapidly over the past two years, most vendors are optimistic that the decline will be arrested, and that the next two years may see a flat market, which seems to be the best news for them. “Growth will be flat, but the market size will remain stable for the next two years, following which the size may reduce with the changes in technology. However, as the market matures, there will be significant opportunities for assemblers in gaming PCs, workstations and other embedded devices. System builders will need to find their niche to leverage these opportunities,” says Sushmita Das, Country Manager, Kobian India. n

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role model

Ahead of the curve

Executing large and innovative projects is what has made Locuz Enterprise Solutions a systems integrator par excellence. The company’s three directors, Vijay Wadhi, Uttam Majumdar and Durganadh Venkata, share their exciting journey, future plans and growth strategies n CRN network

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he `190 crore Hyderabad-based Locuz Enterprise solutions stands tall among its systems integrator peers as a company that has industry-best competencies, management and business practices. The three pillars of the success of the company are Vijay Wadhi, Uttam Majumdar and Durganadh Venkata who have positioned the 277-employee Locuz as one of the large enterprise IT infrastructure solutions company in the country with strengths in high performance computing (HPC), data center and networking. “We have created such a strong brand around HPC, data center and networking competencies that customers explicitly tell vendors that they will work only with us,” says a proud Vijay Wadhi, MD & CEO, Locuz.

The beginning Locuz was set up in 1999 by Wadhi and Majumdar. “I began my career in 1988 by starting a company called Silicon Systems where initially I used to sell Hinditron instrumentation products and later Wipro PCs and servers. Majumdar joined me in 1994,” recalls Wadhi. Wadhi, an MBA, comes from a family of restaurateurs, but chose to venture into technology. Majumdar, who did his BTech in Electronics & Communications, joined Wadhi as a sales executive at Silicon but soon became a partner. The duo were compelled to incept Locuz in 1999. “By then Silicon had become one of the largest Wipro corporate resellers. However, we wanted to move into enterprise solutions and were planning to sign up with Sun, but Wipro objected to this. We therefore decided to float Locuz as a Sun and Cisco partner. Silicon continues to operate as a separate company selling PCs and entrylevel servers,” informs Majumdar, Founder & President, Consulting and Services, Locuz.

The journey When the Internet boom was underway, the demand for data centers and network infrastructure was emerging, and hence Locuz decided to focus on these two domains. From 2000 to 2005 Locuz established its reputation as a strong HPC, core data center and network solutions company by executing several prestigious projects. “We

“We wanted to get into enterprise solutions and were planning to sign up with Sun, but Wipro objected. We therefore decided to float Locuz as a Sun and Cisco partner” 30

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Durganadh Venkata, Vijay Wadhi and Uttam Majumdar

deployed India’s first-ever digital library, and set up a center of excellence for the Center for DNA Fingerprinting and Diagnostics in Hyderabad,” says Wadhi. It was in 2005 that the third pillar of Locuz, Durganadh Venkata—a school mate of Majumdar—joined the company. “While Uttam joined Vijay soon after his BTech, I went on to do my MBA in international business and worked for 10 years in different companies, including the IT team of Tata Steel and IBM, before joining Locuz,” informs Venkata who is now Senior VP, Business Development and Operations. With its focus on data centers, HPC and networking, Locuz soon began bagging large projects. One project that Locuz is extremely proud of being a part of is Chandrayaan, India’s first unmanned satellite mission, for which it deployed 230 TB of storage capacity with ILM which earned the company `8.2 crore. By 2008, Locuz had reached a turnover of `73 crore, and was looking at ways to scale up. That’s when it worked out a deal to be acquired by 3i Infotech with the condition that Locuz would continue to operate independently and that its leadership would not change. “Size matters when you want to participate in larger accounts where customers look at your balance sheet,” explains Venkata. “One also requires a larger base of working capital. The merger did exactly that, and from the time we became a part of 3i Infotech, our average project size has been increasing.” In the past three fiscals Locuz has bagged several million dollar projects, with a few in excess of $2 million.

Current business Despite the slowdown over the past couple of years, the company grew from `132 crore in FY2010-11 to


Role model

2013

2012

2011

2010

2008

2007

2004

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the IT transformation consulting `175 crore in FY2011-12 to `190 MILESTONES practice to help customers prepare crore in the last fiscal. This the a roadmap for transforming their IT company attributes to its focus on in keeping with the concepts of the large projects. “In the last two years Incorporated Locuz Enterprise cloud and BYOD. We did a couple our goal was to grow without job Solutions of interesting projects which has additions. To achieve this, in 2010 we launched an initiative called FLASH, Deployed CoE for Center for DNA given us the base to take up large assignments,” informs Majumdar. which stands for ‘Fewer, Larger, Fingerprinting and Diagnostics For its managed services Locuz Stronger & Happier’ customers,” acquired its first customer outside explains Wadhi. Deployed storage and ILM India, an American company, with Under FLASH, each salesperson solution for Chandrayaan for which it signed a multi-year contract had to address fewer but larger `8.2 crore for annual accruals of `1 crore. accounts. The outcome of FLASH is that over the past two years 3i Infotech acquired Locuz has increased the average Outlook 74 percent stake size of its projects manifold. Says Locuz expects to grow at a CAGR Venkata, “For example, in the last of 23 percent to reach `400 crore by Launched an initiative called fiscal, we implemented more than FY2015-16. Geographical expansion FLASH—Fewer, Larger, 20 contracts of `1 crore, 5 customers is a key strategy; this includes setting who contributed $1.5 million each, up an office in Kolkata and tapping Stronger & Happier customers and 3 accounts that contributed $4 international markets. million each.” “In data centers, HPC and nextExecuted `20-crore project for However, its largest deal came in generation networking we have the Department of Space 2012 when Locuz bagged a `40 crore world-class competencies, hence project for the Indian Navy to set up leveraging 3i’s international presence Executed `40-crore Indian a countrywide communications and and other routes we want to take up Navy project for countrywide networking backbone. projects in international markets,” networking backbone Details Venkata, “This is a massays Venkata. sive project for the video surveilLocuz has also developed HPC Reached turnover of lance of the country’s coastline. and cloud migration and management `190 crore Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL) tools, and believes would give it is executing the project, and outgood leverage. Explains Majumdar, sourced to us a part of the work which involved setting “These tools are Locuz’s IP, and help in cloud migration, up the core backbone network that connects all remote remote monitoring, managing HPC and data center monitoring stations to the command center in Delhi, and infrastructure.” deploying HD video across 50 stations.” As a result, in Locuz also plans to work with BEL for large projects FY2012-13, Locuz’s Cisco business reached `75 crore, in the government sector. Services will continue to and it is now on its way to graduating from a Silver to a be a big focus area, and they expect this business to Gold partnership. grow at a CAGR of more than 50 percent to reach `90 The HPC business contributed `52 crore as the crore within the next three years. The company is also company bagged three $2 million -4 million projects in planning to offer a bouquet of infrastructure services the science and research segments. Locuz is also proud including desktop-as-a -service, HPC-as-a-service, and of the fact that it won three of the four peta scale-storage security-as-a-service. projects floated in the country during the last fiscal. The other big tech practice turned out to be identity On a personal note and access management, where Locuz bagged projects Wadhi likes Indian food, reads non-fiction books, and from five large companies including HDFC Life, likes to vacation at hill stations. collectively raking in `25 crore, where it provided the Majumdar, a strict non-vegetarian, loves new cuisine, solution for 12,000 users. but chicken is a must-have. He likes to read business Its revenue from services grew 50 percent to `25 crore. and technology books, and packs-off to Switzerland, his “While post-sales support dominated with `17 crore, we favorite holiday destination. saw an almost 100 percent growth in professional services Venkata, a vegetarian, is fond of south Indian cuisine, and the remote management business. Last year we started but also enjoys Thai and Italian food. He loves to travel, and is a voracious reader of fiction. His favorite remains The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini. “All three of us have very different tastes, Wadhi sums things up nicely. “All three of us have very different tastes, but at work we gel beautifully, but at work we gel beautifully. Add to that complementing each other without any duplication or our strong team of 277, and you know what difference. Add to that our strong team of 277, and you know what makes Locuz special.” n makes Locuz special”

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tech focus Versatile printer

for small businesses For the small office, the Canon Pixma MX892 Wireless Inkjet all-in-one printer is versatile enough, but its cost-per-page is a bit high n EDWARD J CORREIA

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or small-office situations where good-quality color printing trumps high-speed output, the Canon Pixma MX892 Wireless Inkjet all-in-one printer is worth considering. For $199 (listed price) the MX892 delivers two-sided color scanning, copying and printing; wireless and remote printing from mobile devices; and brilliant edge-to-edge color output rivaling much higherend equipment. But with a relatively low paper capacity and cost-per-black-page north of 5 cents, this Pixma model is clearly not for every situation. Out of the box the glossy, black finish of the MX892 makes an impression, as does its multipurpose control panel buttons. Thanks to clever backlighting, the buttons appear as arrow keys for controlling some printer functions and as number keys for performing numerical functions such as dialing a fax. Impressions continue when the printer’s front door automatically opens to reveal output as it enters the lower tray. The unit occupies about 18-inch by 19-inch of desktop space and stands less than 9-inch tall, but with its rear feeder and front door open will require about 13-inch of vertical clearance and about two feet from front to back. Constructed like a layer cake with rear hinges, the unit’s sheet feeder assembly lifts on a spring hinge to reveal a flatbed scanner and copier glass, on to which as many as 35 originals can be fed, flipped over and copied on their reverse side. With the feeder closed, the scanner bed can be lifted and remains up with a plastic bar that’s hinged on one side. This reveals the ink heads and cartridge assembly, which moves to maintenance position for installing or swapping out any of its five ink cartridges. To close the scanner bed simply push the bar aside and it retracts automatically as the assembly gently lowers on its dampened hinges. After unpacking, the printer was set up and ready to use in about five minutes. Being fans of Canon’s line of digital SLR cameras,

In addition to its dye-based inks for CMYK, Canon employs a second pigment-based black ink cartridge for black-only printing to improve cost-effectiveness 32

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testers were most interested in evaluating the Pixma MX892’s adeptness at printing digital images. With its 4,096 color nozzles, the MX892 can produce a maximum resolution of 9,600x2,400. We were not disappointed. When printing a series of high-resolution test images, color gradations were continuous and there were absolutely no signs of pixelation or dithering. But it certainly took its time. 4-inch by 6-inch printouts took about a minute on average, and about twice that for 8x11 images. Canon estimates the cost of color printing with the MX892 at about 13 cents per page and rates color print speed at 9.3 pages per minute. In addition to its dye-based inks for CMYK, Canon employs a second pigment-based black ink cartridge for black-only printing to improve cost-effectiveness. Its 512-nozzle black-only nozzle spits out a maximum resolution of 600x600 dpi at a rated speed of 12.5 ppm. In addition to support for Apple’s AirPrint for printing from iPads and such and Google Cloud Print for direct printing of Google Docs, Canon also includes the Pixma Cloud Link which permits printing through Google Cloud Print to the MX892 or any other Pixma Cloud Link-enabled printer from any Internet-connected device. The feature works with Picasa and other Webbased picture services and templates for printing directly to the MX892 without a computer. Other software permits sharing the printer with anyone anywhere, as well as the printing of pictures and movie frames from Canon cameras directly or through a series of photo filter effects such as miniature, fish-eye and soft focus. The MX892 also can print from or scan to just about any type of memory card or stick including USB, SD, microSD, miniSD, SDHC, xD-Picture Card, memory stick (all types), MMC and even CompactFlash. For the small office, the Canon Pixma MX892 Wireless Inkjet all-in-one printer with its Ethernet, USB and Wi-Fi interfaces plus a Bluetooth option is versatile enough, but its cost-per-page is a bit high and its paper capacity is a bit scant. It holds 150 sheets in the main cassette plus another 150 in the multipurpose feeder. But for $199, the MX892 delivers great quality color printing and would be a good MFP choice for organizations that don’t rely too heavily on large volumes of printed materials. n


channel buzz Confed-ITA’s big-bang annual summit

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he confederation of channel associations of TN and Puducherry, Confed-ITA (Confederation of Information Technology Associations), which has 25 associations as its members, conducted its 6th annual summit titled Puthiya Paathai (Innovative Path) on April 6-7, 2013 at Hotel Le Meridien, Coimbatore. Apart from 600 channel partners from ConfedITA associations, around 50 members from other associations across south India took part in the summit. The chief guest at the function was Anton Prakash, an entrepreneur based in California. Informed B Kuberan, President, Confed-ITA, “During the past 12 months Confed-ITA has been a hotbed of activity. We have improved the coordination between associations, and have acted maturely in resolving channel conflicts as well as conflicts with vendors and distributors.” The various initiatives by the association include setting up a closed user group network for members of the association to communicate cost-effectively. To ensure partners make healthy margins, Confed-ITA introduced campaigns such as Quote MRP, and also introduced a uniform rate card for all AMC and repair services. R Muthiah Pillai, President Elect, Confed-ITA, and Chairman, Puthiya Paathai summit, explained how Confed-ITA employed a unique scheme to raise money for organizing the summit. “To raise funds all the members united to place orders with a single vendor.

We invited bids from PC vendors for the supply of 1,000 notebooks. HP won the bid, and all the 1,000 notebooks were supplied by its re-distributor. For every notebook billed the re-distributors gave Confed-ITA a commission of `1,000. It is a better way of raising funds than asking for sponsorships because the vendor gets guaranteed business and we get the funds.” Through different contributions, membership fees and sponsorship deals, the association has raised a corpus of `1 crore which it will spend for extending social benefits to its members. “We are planning to spend nearly `40 lakh this year in health insurance policies for not just the members and their employees but also the immediate families of the members’ staff,” stated Pillai. During one of the open forums, plans were laid out to set up a South India Information Technology Association (SIITA). “We hope to formally launch SIITA once the state-wide integration of associations in AP and Karnataka is completed,” informed S Karthikeyan, MD, Bloom Computers, who is currently chairing the initiative to integrate all associations. The event also had its share of fun and frolic. While professionals entertained the audience with a mimicry show, amateur actors from the different associations displayed their histrionic skills in a stage play. n

n Members presenting a skit depicting the life of an IT partner

n An engrossed audience viewing performance by TV artists

— By Ramdas S He attended the summit in Coimbatore

n R Muthiah Pillai, President Elect, Confed-ITA, welcoming the audience at the event

n Chief Guest Anton Prakash, a Silicon Valley entrepreneur, delivering the keynote

n R Muthiah Pillai, President Elect, taking over from B Kuberan, Outgoing President, Confed-ITA

n B Kuberan, presenting a memento to Nalin Patel, President, AIT, Bengaluru

n Partners discussing the creation of SIITA with representatives of various channel associations

To feature your company’s events in CRN, send write-ups with photographs to editor@ubmindia.com

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channel buzz

n Som Satsangi, VP, Sales, Enterprise Group, HP India, Parag

Khurana, Country Head, F5 Networks, Neelam Dhawan, MD, HP India, Pradeep Gupta, MD, CyberMedia with Devendra Taneja, MD, PC Solutions

PC Solutions celebrates silver jubilee Delhi-based PC Solutions, a leading SI, recently celebrated its silver jubilee in New Delhi which was attended by the likes of Neelam Dhawan, MD, HP India; Som Satsangi, VP, Sales, Enterprise Group, HP India; and Pradeep Gupta, MD, CyberMedia. On the occasion, Devendra Taneja, MD, PC Solutions, said, “Over the last 25 years we have grown from strength to strength following the basic theme of We Care, We Nurture as symbolized by our logo. This is what we have tried to practice with our customers, employees and business associates.” According to Taneja, the company implemented more than 2,500 projects in the last three years and successfully expanded its presence outside India in Africa, Latin America, Australia and the US. PC Solutions closed FY2012-13 at `181 crore. n

n Rajesh Goenka, VP, Sales & Marketing, Rashi, Susan

Hansen, VP, Sales and Marketing, Asia Pacific and Middle East, Plantronics, Bobby Joseph, Country Director, Middle East, Plantronics, and Navin Mishra, Product Manager, Rashi

Plantronics honors Rashi At a partner meet in Colombo from April 10-12, 2013, Plantronics recognized Rashi Peripherals as its Retail Partner of the Year. Rashi was chosen from distributors from various countries such as Sri Lanka, UAE and Pakistan. Said Bobby Joseph, Country Director, India & Middle East, Plantronics, “Rashi has a passionate and dedicated team which is instrumental in achieving our goals. We are very proud of Rashi for this achievement and hope for an even better performance next year.” n

Dell conducts regional partner summits Building on the success of its first national partner summit, Dell connected with more than 250 tier-2 partners at its recently concluded regional partner summits in Bengaluru, Delhi, Hyderabad and Mumbai. Themed Better Together, the summits saw a representation of partners across verticals such as midmarket, government, healthcare, n Diky Wang, Manager, GCC, APJ, education and large Dell, Manoj Singh, Branch Manager, enterprise. Wizertech, and Rohit Oberoi, RM, Dell According to India Piyush Pushkal, Country Lead, Marketing & Programs, GCC, Dell India, “These summits helped us understand our partners at a personal level and what we can do to further increase partner profitability. We shared best practices and industry tips on how to productively reach out to potential customers.” nw

n Vittorio Boero, CIO, Ferrari, with Nikolay Grebennikov, CTO,

Kaspersky Lab, during the signing of the commercial agreement

Kaspersky is Ferrari’s choice Kaspersky Lab, which has been an official sponsor of Ferrari’s F1 racing team since 2010, has extended the relationship by becoming the IT security provider of choice, for the brand. Kaspersky has entered into a 5-year commercial agreement whereby it will take care of Ferrari’s complete endpoint security needs. Its solutions will be installed not only on office PCs but also on PCs controlling production lines and on employees’ tablets and smartphones. In addition, the two companies have released a co-branded product called Kaspersky Internet Security Special Ferrari Edition. This product will come with a Ferrari-style user interface and the Ferrari Virtual Academy video simulator game. n

To feature your company’s events in CRN, send write-ups with photographs to editor@ubmindia.com 34

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new products Asus Fonepad phablet

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sus has launched its phablet called the Asus Fonepad. It sports an Intel Atom processor, Z2420, comes with Android 4.1 OS and has voice calling. It features a 7-inch, 10-point, multi-touch HD display with IPS technology that allows 178-degree viewing. The phablet features a 1.2 MP front-facing camera and a 3 MP autofocus rear camera with HD video recording capability. It has 8 GB of internal storage via an SD card slot which is expandable to 32 GB. For connectivity the phablet offers 2G, 3G, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 3.0 and microUSB 2.0. The phablet is 10.4 mm thick, weighs 340 gm, and comes with a 4,270 mAh lithium polymer battery that provides nine hours of battery life. The device also features Asus SonicMaster audio and MaxxAudio 3 technology. The Asus Fonepad is priced at an MRP of `15,999 and carries a 1-year warranty. n

Lenovo IdeaPad tablet

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enovo has launched its new hybrid Windows 8 tablet called the IdeaPad Lynx K3011 with an Intel Clover Trail-W dual core 1.8 GHz processor and 2 GB RAM. It features a 11.6-inch, 10-point, multi-touch HD display with IPS technology. The tablet has a 2 MP front-facing camera for video chat but no rear camera. It has 32 GB storage via microSD card expandable up to 64 GB. The device comes with micro USB, microHDMI port, 3.5 mm audio jack and dual speakers. The tablet provides connectivity via WLAN 802.11 b/g/n, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.0. It comes with a 6,800 mAh lithium polymer battery that provides 16 hours of battery life. The product is priced at an MRP of `51,990 and carries a 1-year warranty. n

HP Officejet Pro inkjet eprinters

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P recently launched its monochrome all-in-one inkjet eprinters, Officejet Pro 3610 and 3620. The company says that the printers can print at ISO speed up to 19 pages per minute with a standard-sized cartridge that can print up to 1,600 pages. The printers save up to 50 percent energy compared to mono lasers. They feature auto-duplex printing, and built-in Ethernet that enables Apple AirPrint on the iPad and iPhone, embedded printing on Samsung Galaxy S 4, and HP ePrint. While the HP Officejet Pro 3610 comes with print, scan and copy capabilities, the 3620 has additional features such as fax and automatic document feeder. The 3610 and 3620 are priced at an MRP of `7,999 and `11,999 respectively. n

Kaspersky Pure 3.0 security

K

aspersky Lab has launched the Kaspersky Pure 3.0 Total Security special edition that features online banking security, password management and backup. The Kaspersky Safe Money feature verifies a site’s authenticity. The product includes a secure keyboard which ensures that login information is not recorded by anyone using key logging software. Its online password vault allows users to store their login information in a single, secure vault which can be synced with multiple PCs. Kaspersky Pure 3.0 also helps users to create secure passwords using the Kaspersky Password Manager. It also offers an integrated online backup feature that allows users to automatically backup their files online by using preconfigured Dropbox. The product comes with a split key option in 3-user and 5-user packs, each with a separate media and different activation codes, thus allowing partners to sell each key separately. The Kaspersky Pure 3.0 1-user pack for a year is available for `1,995, while the 3-user and 5-user packs for a year are available for `3,295 and `4,195 respectively. n

The products featured here have not undergone any benchmarking or testing. The trailers contain information provided by vendors and distributors. To feature your company’s products in CRN, send write-ups with photos to editor@ubmindia.com

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01/05/2013

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shadow ram Many IBM and Dell senior managers looking for jobs

T

he decision by IBM to sell off its x-series business and the recent move by Alok Ohrie to Dell is creating a stir in the IT job market. Ohrie has taken seven senior IBM executives with him to Dell, and a few more are expected to join soon. Many other IBMers from the x-series team have floated their CVs in the market because there is a strong feeling among them that Lenovo will hire only a few from the team. At Dell, the influx of IBMers is expected to result in some of the existing Dell senior executives quitting or getting fired, hence many Dell senior managers are also on the look-out. According to a Bengaluru-based senior HR executive, “For several months many high-profile vacancies in the industry—such as a head for Microsoft’s OEM business— have not been filled because of the non-availability of good candidates. Now suddenly we have many resumes, so be ready for a churn in the senior management of IT vendors.” n

GET

Personal

“I want to direct a movie” Shrinivas Chebbi is currently VP, Building Business, India & Saarc, Schneider Electric. Chebbi has 25 years experience in the power electronics industry. He joined Schneider in 1998 and was earlier responsible for the operational marketing of industrial control products in the Gulf countries

Shrinivas Chebbi

If not in the IT industry: I would have been into movie making.

Biggest passion: Discovering the world through travel and movies. Gadget I can’t live without: My iPad. Weekends are for: Family, friends and movies. Favorite holiday destination: Cape Town in South Africa. Hate the most: Arrogant and fake people. Favorite movies: Shakti and In The Line of Fire. Favorite stars: Kevin Costner, Clint Eastwood, Amitabh Bachchan, Aamir Khan and Kareena Kapoor. Role model: Steve Jobs. Ultimate ambition: To direct an award-winning film. Wildest thing I have ever done: Flying in a microlite with a trainee pilot and a friend. Thing I most want to do in life: Follow my passion and conviction. If I became the PM: I would ensure basic education and free primary health-care for all, and a ban on child labor. Celebrity I would like to spend a day with: Amitabh Bachchan. One person I would like to meet and why: Nelson Mandela. I want to know how he retained his sanity, fighting spirit and hope despite being jailed for 27 years in an 8 x 8 sq ft cell. Deepest and darkest fear: Loss of peace. n — CRN Network

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Computer Reseller News

01/05/2013 www.crn.in


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CRN 01 May 2013 issue