Page 1

June 2021

Issue 311

Going green for the next generation Sustainability and environmental concerns are a priority for schoolchildren and schools alike – and dealers are there to help

inspiring success

THE ULTRACLEAN OFFICE Dealers can ensure safe working spaces – and see sales soar SECURITY FOR EDUCATION Keeping data secure when it’s being used, stored or disposed of PRODUCT LIFECYCLE How can being aware of the ‘product lifecycle’ be of benefit to a dealer?

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An opportunity that is too good to miss for your sales team. Cash rewards for your first training session and every sale made.* Keep checking your inbox. Or email salesadmin@fellowes.com

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We’ve finally arrived. It’s been a long old journey, but we’ve made it to June 2021 - the month when all restrictions *might* be lifted, and we get back to some sort of normality! Going green for the next It’s been over a year since our lives as we knew them were generation thrown into disarray, but now there is hope that, after June 21st, we could be throwing a few shapes in a nightclub, or heading to a foreign beach for a well-deserved holiday. Even if worst case scenario does occur, and restrictions aren’t fully lifted, I think we can all agree that the last few weeks of seeing our friends and family again in some capacity has been much needed and much appreciated. Some of the biggest changes due to COVID over the last year have been in our schools. With this in mind, we look at the areas where dealers can help schools, and what opportunities these changes in education could provide. This includes looking at how dealers can help schools think green, and become more sustainable, exploring what products can help schools keep their data secure and the solutions dealers can provide when it comes to education and technology. Moving on, we speak to long-established dealer Egan Reid about how, after 45 years in the business, they still continue to evolve. Our BIG ASK invites the industry to give their thoughts on the product lifecycle, and when dealers should start to diversify. Carrying on the theme of evolving, Langstone Press tells us that, despite 74 years’ trading, and constant evolution, core values are still key. Our LIVE IT section tests your brain with a quiz and a caption competition and the good Father lets us in on his top weight-loss secrets! Finally, Old Friends Steve Harrop, Steve Robinson and Ian Buckley draw this issue to an optimistic close. As always, don’t forget to chat to us on Twitter and let us know your thoughts and opinions: @dealersupport. June 2021

Issue 311

Sustainability and environmental concerns are a priority for schoolchildren and schools alike – and dealers are there to help

inspiring success

THE ULTRACLEAN OFFICE Dealers can ensure safe working spaces – and see sales soar

SECURITY FOR EDUCATION Keeping data secure when it’s being used, stored or disposed of

PRODUCT LIFECYCLE How can being aware of the ‘product lifecycle’ be of benefit to a dealer?

Ellie Potter Acting editor

EDITOR Ellie Potter

CREATIVE TEAM Amanda Lancaster

HEAD OF SALES Matthew Moore

DIRECTOR Vicki Baloch

Dealer Support is the leading monthly publication for dealers in the business supplies industry. It provides information on the industry (both in the UK and overseas), information for and about the UK’s independent dealers, as well as information and advice on running a small business. The views expressed in this magazine are not necessarily the views of the publishers. Copyright of all the material published remains with Intelligent Media Solutions Limited. No part of this magazine may be reproduced, copied, stored in an electronic retrieval or transmitted, save with written permission or in accordance with provision of the copyright designs and patent act of 1988. Printed in the UK by Buxton Press www.buxtonpress.co.uk

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THE independent event for UK dealers PUT THIS IN YOUR DIARY! Thursday 21st October 2021 Ricoh Arena, Coventry

JUNE 2021

Contents INDUSTRY 10 EVOLUTION, NOT REVOLUTION, KEY FOR EGAN REID Why after 45 years evolution is still crucial


How dealers can help schools enhance their green credentials


How can being aware of the ‘product lifecycle’ be of benefit to a dealer?



A new name but an old hand at creating opportunities


Langstane Press on never losing sight of its core values




Keeping data secure when it’s being used, stored or disposed of


Dealers can ensure safe working spaces – and see sales soar

40 PRESENTING NEW SOLUTIONS FOR EDUCATORS An increase in the use of technology presents opportunities for dealers


Take a break and enjoy some lighthearted fun


Put on the pounds this year? You’re not alone

38 “Pick a handful of innovative products from a newly launched catalogue and introduce them to your customers”



Speaking with old friends



THE MONTH THAT WAS Derek Neil joins Data Direct Derek Neil has joined Data Direct as business development manager, moving from Olivetti, where he spent 15 years, most recently in a role supporting its dealer business partners with account, sales and product management. “Having supported the Olivetti dealers for the past 15 years with account management and product support, I am excited to be joining the business as it goes from strength-to-strength, allowing firstly

Advantia and Exertis launch ValueX Advantia and Exertis have launched ValueX, which the companies claim is a

the joint Olivetti and Data Direct dealers continuity through the Olivetti change of business model, and, secondly, maximising the Data Direct portfolio within these dealers,” said Derek. Marianne Chamberlain, Data Direct’s sales

unique concept for competing against private label ranges, offering dealers

director, added: “It’s great to have Derek

the opportunity to supply quality branded products at competitive prices.

on board as we look to add more choice

The Advantia and Exertis teams have worked closely together to help

with products and solutions to support our

determine the correct products to be included in the ValueX range. Exertis has

marketplace. Derek comes with excellent

sourced products from established branded suppliers, creating a range that

experience with the Olivetti brand, and his

can compete against private label and contract lines.

appointment demonstrates our commitment

The full ValueX range will include 900+ product lines across general office products, packaging, archiving and business machine consumables. The benefits to dealers include transparent pricing and savings, consistent quality products from specialist branded suppliers and a product offer that adds true value to the dealer’s proposition - all from a supplier partner that does not compete with the dealer by selling direct to consumers. Meanwhile, the benefits to the consumer include a cost-effective range and the offer of quality, everyday essentials in one place sourced from branded suppliers – trusted consistent quality at consistent prices. “By pooling the wealth of knowledge and experience available within the Advantia and Exertis management teams, we have built this exciting new range of products,” said Steve Carter, Advantia MD. “When you work together you can achieve great things; the ValueX range is testament that collaborative approach works.”

[06] JUNE 2021


to deliver a seamless transition with the change in the UK Olivetti business model.”


Nectere announces partnership with EvolutionX and FusionPlus Data Nectere has announced a new partnership with online trading platform EvolutionX and FusionPlus, a data enhancement service provider. The announcement came as Nectere implemented several key strategic changes to the company in line with its expansion and dealer portfolio. The upgrade from its current website will give their dealers improved functionality and enhance their customers’ shopping experience online. The data capabilities of FusionPlus Data, combined with the functionality of the platform, allows Nectere to continue its range expansion, opening up the opportunity to trade with all of the certified vendors currently working with FusionPlus. It also allows Nectere to create its own, bespoke, product catalogues within the FusionPlus database, giving their dealers access to enhanced product ranges such as personalised clothing, workwear, PPE, medical and catering supplies. This additional functionality will boost Nectere’s marketing capabilities and target their dealers’ customers based on their product requirements, online shopping trends and trading patterns.

Integra announces Mark Hinckley has passed away With great sadness, Integra has announced the passing of purchasing

sense of humour. Allison Fishlock, Integra’s

manager, Mark Hinckley, following a

purchasing director, who worked with

period of illness.

Mark for more than 17 years, added:

Mark’s wife and three children

“Mark was a very private person

were with him when he peacefully

with strong connections and a high

slipped away on 28 April.

regard for his local church and local

Since joining Integra in 2012, Mark

community. When you truly got to

had been a highly respected and

know Mark, you would discover his

valuable member of the team, and will

fantastic sense of humour, his kind

be greatly missed by everyone, said

heart and the true professionalism

Integra in a statement. He will also

with which he went about his work

be a great loss to the industry, having

life. He played a pivotal role within

worked within it for over 35 years and

the purchasing team and we will miss

having built many, many friendships

him dearly. Our thoughts are with

based on his integrity, gentleness

his wife and children who we will be

and kindness, together with his dry

supporting during this difficult time.”


Helix launches 100% recycled plastic ruler Stationery manufacturer Maped Helix has launched an environmentally friendly Helix 30cm ruler made from 100% recycled plastic. The new Helix Recycled Ruler is a classic design black ruler with contrasting white print for easy and accurate measuring. and comes in recycled card packaging. With increasing demand from consumers for environmentally-friendly products, developing new cardboard plastic free packaging alternatives has been a priority for Maped Helix, while striving to eradicate single-use plastics and minimise packaging for all products. Future products are being developed using greener materials for easier recycling, materials from sustainable sources, and recycled materials. Since launching their Helix Oxford Writing range in cardboard, plastic-free packaging in 2019, this has become a key feature of many of their ranges including Maped Creativ and Colouring. It is also available in a printed show box of 50 for retailers or schools to purchase in bulk. For further information please contact customerservices@ mapedhelix.co.uk or call 01384 286860.

www.dealersupport.co.uk JUNE 2021 [07]



NEWS REPORT Regulations set to put pressure on packing efficiency Forthcoming packaging and waste regulations are set to add to pressures for greater packing efficiency


he cardboard supply market is under

She goes on to explain that this proposed change could

stress, and forthcoming changes to the

affect users of cardboard boxes in several ways. Firstly,

regime around packaging and waste

there will be an incentive to maximise the productive use of

will create further impact. Retailers and

material by, for example, not using over-size boxes. Secondly,

shippers need to act now to optimise

because board is already fairly easy to recycle, it is likely to be

their use of an increasingly valuable

treated more favourably than other packaging materials, so

commodity, according to Jo Bradley, business development

users are likely to switch towards board for many purposes,

manager for packaging solutions at Quadient.

increasing demand and, therefore, price for new and recycled

Two separate developments in packaging waste regulations are set to put further pressure on the board market.

pulp as well as all paper and board products. The third change is that users will have to consider not

The first, to be implemented from 1 April 2022, is a

only the cardboard box but any void fill - from air bags to

new plastic packaging tax of £200 per tonne on all plastic

polystyrene beads – again emphasising the need to ‘right-

packaging materials made in, or imported to, the UK that

size’ boxes and cartons.

contain less than 30% recyclate. In order to meet the 30% recyclate target across the

Traditionally, packing lines use box preforms in one or several standard sizes. An automated line may use just one

board, the capacity of the plastic recycling industry would

size, regardless of the volume of goods to be packed. A

have to increase by 100% - which means many packaging

manual packer will try to use the most appropriate size but,

users will either pay the tax or switch to cardboard.

given the difficulty of predicting need in a complex fulfilment

The second change is still in the consultation stage

operation, may have to use a box that is ‘too big’ along with

but proposes to introduce, in phases from 2023, ‘extended

additional materials as dunnage. This is inherently wasteful,

producer responsibility’ (EPR) for packaging. Under EPR,

unnecessarily expensive in shipping charges, and very

producers – packers, shippers and retailers, as well as

unpopular with consumers.

material manufacturers – pay the full costs of dealing with the waste they produce. Under existing producer responsibility regulations, while

The government expects EPR to cost business £2.7 billion in its first year if firms don’t take the desired mitigating actions. Automated packaging systems, which can make right-

packaging waste recycling rates have improved markedly,

sized cardboard boxes for each individual order, could be an

the costs of waste-handling are largely picked up by local

answer as they can reduce the number of boxes shipped and

authorities and others, Bradley says.

reduce packaging material usage, says Bradley.

[08] JUNE 2021



get organised today with tomorrow in mind The colourful filing range made from 100% recycled plastics.

www.dealersupport.co.uk JUNE 2021 [09]

For more details please visit www.exaclairlimited.com or call 01553 696600



Evolution, not revolution, key for Egan Reid Long-established dealer EGAN REID has been a name in the sector for more than 45 years, and that’s down to a willingness to continually evolve the business


gan Reid has come a long way

staff and, by 1990, needed to relocate to somewhere

since the business was started by

bigger; they moved into the purpose-built premises

Jack Reid and Jim Egan in 1957 as

in Stockport where the company is still based.

a letterpress printing business; it

“This move was a big step. It allowed us to

has proved that a business must

grow, as the previous building was far too small for

continually evolve if it is to remain successful.

us,” says Martin.

Perhaps the first example of this is when the

But the business’s growth hasn’t just been organic;

company got out of the printing business in 1976 –

over the past 15 years, Egan Reid has regularly acquired

around the time the print unions were very militant

businesses, including Lincoln-based Todds Group in

– and bought two new businesses; an office supplies

2019, which expanded the company into the office fit-

company in Stockport called Office

out sector; Martin says the company is now much more

Supplies Manufacturing, and an office furniture

than just an office supplies and furniture business; it

company, B&H Commercial.

caters for the entire building.

This was the beginning of Egan Reid in its current

This willingness to expand into new markets, either

form – 2021 managing director Martin Reid joined the

by acquisition or organically, ensured that, when the

business as a fresh-faced 18-year-old the year after.

pandemic hit last year, Egan Reid was able to weather

The company grew quite quickly to 25 members of

[10] JUNE 2021


the storm.




“The way we work will

“The past 18 months have been very challenging,” he

change, long-term, and more

says. He’s not exaggerating. In April 2020, sales were

people will work from home.

down 53% year-on-year. May was even worse – 73%

Likewise, more people are

down on the 2019 figures. “We had to do something

ordering off the internet, which

about that,” he says. “So we entered new markets,

has allowed companies like

including selling more than £1 million of PPE.”

Amazon to get stronger.”

He adds that Egan Reid’s in-house marketing team

Click here to hear more from Martin in the latest tuned in podcast, hosted by Steve Harrop

also played their part here. “That’s how we did so well


with PPE – we created some literature very quickly.”

These factors mean that, once

This was sent out to customers, who, at the time, were

again, Egan Reid will have to

desperate for masks, sanitiser and the like.

evolve how the business works, connecting directly with customers at home, and also with a greater emphasis on online sales. However, the company

You have to be different, and have to have that unique selling point

will continue to hold stock. “We have stock worth more than £500,000 across our three sites,” he says. “Carrying stock is important to us, especially with the demise of Spicers, as the level of service has declined since.” Nevertheless, he is positive about the future for

Martin adds that the company also made use of the

Egan Reid, with an attitude of “If you need it, we

government furlough scheme. “We found the system

can supply it” and plans to open up supply chains in

advantageous and, at one stage, had 50 people on

more new markets, hoping to replicate the success

furlough. Now we have only one, which shows how

of the PPE lines from last year.

things have turned around, and we have got things going in the right direction.” He adds that a positive aspect of the pandemic

Again, it goes back to constant evolution. “If you have a winning formula, it goes so far, so you have to keep refining it and changing it,” he says. “You have

was seeing his staff rise to the challenge; many

to be different, and have to have that unique selling

of them have been with the company for several

point. We just want to be unique, and sell something

decades. “I have seen some of my staff rise way above

different, as a lot of the market is the same.”

expectations,” he says. “People have become all-

For instance, acquiring Todds has helped the

rounders. There have been people staying late at night

company into new markets. “We supplied all the office

answering the ‘phone, and delivering next day. For a

furnishings but now we are getting involved in fit-out

football analogy, think of Paul Madeley [Leeds United

as well. We are doing mezzanine floors, partitioning,

and England utility player during the 1970s] – play him

air-conditioning, lighting, plumbing - this has added

anywhere, and he’ll do a job.”

another string to our bow and, with our large database,

As lockdown measures lift, Egan Reid’s sales are improving once again. April 2021’s figures were

we can exploit this. It is working well.” With the third generation of the Reid family,

70% up on last year, for instance, although Martin

Charlie, making his way in the business, Martin is

acknowledges that the next year will still be difficult

confident that the company has a sound grounding,

in many ways.

and will be around for many years to come.

www.dealersupport.co.uk JUNE 2021 [11]



Going green for the next generation Sustainability and environmental concerns are a priority for schoolchildren and schools alike – and dealers are there to help


nvironmental issues have climbed the news agenda in recent years, and young people today are more concerned about climate change than their predecessors. Indeed,

54% of students see climate breakdown as the second biggest threat to the UK, just behind the quality of the NHS, according to a September 2020 study by the University of Winchester. This means that schools, colleges and universities need to be alive to young people’s concerns. As Lawrence Savage, marketing manager at ExaClair, notes: “With the UK government recently pledging £1 billion to build new schools, and a further £560 million for repairs and upgrades to accommodate the growing pupil population – an estimated 640 new schools are needed in England – many governing bodies are seeing this as an opportunity to invest in green schools and thus help the UK meet its commitment to net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.”

[12] JUNE 2021


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Lawrence adds that a growing number of schools are

innovations in relation to sustainable products over the

now taking part in eco-friendly projects that involve not

past few years and, with this in mind, suppliers should

just pupils, but other elements of their local communities,

now be offering office equipment that adheres to

so it is important that educational establishments continue

environmentally-orientated standards. “By highlighting

to focus upon green equipment and supplies.

these specific environmental credentials, dealers can help

“The Carbon Trust has outlined the main components that can contribute to energy reductions,

educate their customers, guiding them towards suitable product recommendations.”

with heating, lighting and water usage naturally at the top of the list,” he says. “However, by installing

EDUCATION IS KEY Brad Goldsmith, marketing services manager at Premier Paper Group, agrees that education is key. “Fortunately, now, more than ever, there is a wealth

Many governing bodies are seeing this as an opportunity to invest in green schools

of information regarding products, their environmental credentials and traceability available on the internet, as well as through suppliers,” he says. “It’s vital that suppliers make this information as readily available as possible to help customers such as schools make well-informed decisions, ensuring that their product mix meets their CSR [corporate social

other sustainable equipment around the school, they can promote sustainability across various locations,

responsibility] standards. “Dealers play an important role in the supply chain.

including canteens, break time areas and classrooms.

By ensuring that they offer the best choice of products

“In terms of stationery, notebooks that feature

and services, based on their customers’ requirements,

recycled paper, as well as writing instruments made

as well as sharing important information such as

from recycled and recyclable materials, are popular;

environmental credentials, they are, in turn, enabling

pencil cases and other organisational products made

their clients to make educated and informed decisions

from sustainable materials also do well. In addition,

on their paper purchases.”

demand has also been increasing for green cleaning

Brad notes that most brands of paper today are

products and reusable water bottles, particularly

sourced from sustainable manufacturers, where trees

during the pandemic.”

are treated more like crops, and rotated, with many

Lawrence points out that there have been many

[14] JUNE 2021


more being planted by the mill. “Most of today’s paper

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Order Code

Order Code

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is produced to high environmental standards and

“In contrast, many dealers are insisting on green

carry certifications such as FSC®, PEFC, ECF, TCF, EU

product documentation from their suppliers - so much

Ecolabel, Nordic Swan and many more,” he says. “There

so that several are refusing to consider selecting items

are also growing efforts to reduce the CO2 emissions

that cannot be proven to be ‘green’.

from paper manufacturing and distribution processes, and also the use of PVC-based plastics in the packaging. “Brands such as Woodland Trust Printer Paper

“The challenge for dealers is to get schools to do the same and demonstrate that green products are already available and affordable without the ‘eco cost premium’.

and Multicopy are popular; both are produced using

“Manufacturers are striving to eradicate single use

pulp from sustainably managed forests at integrated

plastics from their products, and minimise packaging.

paper mills, and carry many impressive environmental credentials. The Evolution brand of copier is also a top contender among schools due to its recycled content. “However, the most popular is the carbon capture programme - Premier’s environmental marketing initiative that allows paper users to mitigate CO2 emissions from the production and distribution of their paper and to directly support the work of the

Green products are already available and affordable without the ‘eco cost premium’

Woodland Trust, enabling them to create and maintain native woodland here in the UK.” Products have been developed using ‘greener’ STATIONERY CONCERNS

materials for easier recycling, materials from sustainable

However, when it comes to consumables such as

sources, and from recycled materials. This has become

stationery, competitive pricing is often more important

a feature of the stationery market.

than environmental concerns, as schools continue

“As a manufacturer of stationery products Maped

under huge financial pressures due to COVID

Helix is committed to producing greener products for

lockdowns and budget cuts.

schools. One example has been the success of our bulk

“Many teachers and parents, as individuals, are more concerned about buying green products than it actually being a school’s policy to do so,” says Lianne Fletcher, marketing manager of Maped Helix.

[16] JUNE 2021


teacher’s pack of Helix 30cm rulers which are made entirely from recycled plastic. “Dealers that list and offer such products to schools will be at the heart of this green revolution.”

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Creating an ultraclean workplace: effortless and effective equipment With more employees returning to the workplace, safety will be a top priority - and there are many products from ACCO UK that can help with this


s organisations get closer to employees


returning to the workplace for at least some

Another alternative to sanitising high-touch items is ultraviolet

of the time, the focus now is on how to

(UVC) light; this method is scientifically proven to destroy germs,

maintain health and safety and protect staff

bacteria and viruses quickly, safely and efficiently. Kensington has

during the time they spend in the office. For

harnessed the power of this technology in its UVStand™ Monitor,

many, having wipes, cleansers and other

which uses UVC LED lights to sanitise keyboards, mice, mobiles

chemical-based products around the office may seem like the

and other devices quickly and efficiently, eliminating up to 99.9%

best and only solution. While they do help, these products are

of bacteria in just 10 minutes.

only effective if they are readily available for use when staff need

However, for the workplace to be a truly ultraclean

them, and they can be costly to continuously restock. Constant

environment, sanitisation should not stop with surfaces; there are

and thorough cleaning can be a hassle for staff to keep up with,

countless germs, bacteria, allergens and other harmful particles

on top of their normal priorities, and it is difficult to ensure that

swirling invisibly in the air, potentially causing illness. An air purifier

this cleaning is being handled effectively enough.

can go a long way in helping to eliminate some of these airborne

In many cases, it could be worth investing in a more advanced

particles, minimising the transmission of illnesses. The Leitz

solution to reduce some of the burden. The good news is that

TruSens range of air purifiers can capture an impressive 99% of

many of the much-loved brands in ACCO UK’s portfolio offer

airborne viruses and allergens. The range is also equipped with

products that make it easy to keep up with health and safety

UV-C technology, which destroys these particles and pushes truly

protocols, with minimal effort, in the post-pandemic return to work.

clean air back into the room.

Keyboards and computer mice are, arguably, the most high-

Workplace health and safety will be a top concern for

touch items in the office - and are a hotbed of germs, bacteria

organisations in the return to work, and resellers should seize this

and dirt. To maintain cleanliness, these items should be fully

opportunity to offer their customers alternatives to traditional

sanitised several times a week, if not daily. As a result of changing

cleaning methods. Introduce or upsell products that make it easy

consumer needs caused by the pandemic, Kensington has

to maintain sanitation standards with minimal intervention from

introduced washable keyboards and mice to its range, which can

staff, and help reduce the wastefulness of single-use wipes and

safely stand up to immersion for easy cleaning.

the environmental impacts of harsh chemicals. Your customers, their employees, and the planet will thank you! To learn more about Kensington’s new pandemic-friendly products, visit: https://www.kensington.com/en-gb/ Explore the new Leitz TruSens range here: https://www. leitz.com/en-gb/design--concepts/trusens-air-purifiers/?r=1

[18] JUNE MAY 2021 2021 www.dealersupport.co.uk www.dealersupport.co.uk

The Ultraclean Workplace As organisations in every sector eye a return to normality after a year of pandemic restrictions, it is clear that safety is the issue on everyone’s minds for the next few months. This past year, Kensington has continually adapted to provide customers with a range of solutions for maintaining health and safety. Our latest innovation for safety in the new normal is the Kensington UVStand™ Monitor Stand with UV-C Sanitisation Compartment. This desktop monitor stand has a built-in sanitisation compartment complete with fully-contained UV LEDs that safely most handheld devices. When in use, the UV-C technology is able to eliminate up to 99.9% of bacteria and viruses within just 10 minutes and without the use of chemicals, liquids or wipes. This makes it quick and easy for organisations to maintain cleanliness in the office environment. This product complements other sanitation-focused products born from the pandemic, including washable keyboards, mouse and desk screens.

UVStand™ Monitor Stand with UV Sanitisation Compartment Safely and easily helps to sanitise keyboards, mice, trackballs, mobile phones and other devices, while promoting healthy posture and optimal comfort.

Pro Fit® Washable USB Keyboard and Mouse Keep commonly-touched surfaces clean and disinfected with these rugged, waterproof Plug and Play USB accessories.

KGuard™ Monitor Mounted Desk Screen Quickly and easily installed behind an armmounted monitor, KGuard™ is a clear acrylic sneeze guard that takes up no desk space.

FOR MORE INFORMATION: Email: contact@kensington.com



How can being aware of ‘product lifecycle’ be of benefit to a dealer? We ask the industry their thoughts on when dealers should diversify and pick up new categories or product Robbie Burgess, special projects, Integra In today’s world no customer is going to stumble across a new product; they go to a search box on a website, or pick up a catalogue - not to browse, but to find, and so they miss all the wonderful, innovative new products. The best antidote to this is to pick a handful of innovative products from a newly launched catalogue and introduce them to your customers. This is where the dealer often misses out, selling the ‘I didn’t know that existed’ product. We’re too conditioned as an industry now to automate the fulfilment of business-critical lines such as paper, ink etc. and, if we feel we’ve got that nailed, so that it’s seamless, we tend to forget the rest. Dealers should look to pick up any new product at the start of the growth phase, when the product concept is proven and is becoming more popular, sales are increasing and margins are

[20] JUNE 2021




at their largest. From this point the dealer has the sales through

to sell their product with sampling, incentives, marketing tools,

the growth, maturity and decline phases - and it’s, perhaps, a true

and so on.

entrepreneur who picks up products in the introduction phase. The benefits contrast massively to picking the product

A great example is air purification, for example, the PureSan Room Sanitiser, or the Protec car sanitiser with UVC light

up on the downward slope of the bell curve - the later stages

sterilisation. They aren’t new products per se, as they have had

of maturity and into decline, when the margins are much

great success with home users, often for people with allergies,

reduced, demand starts to fall, and the dealer becomes just

or those suffering from indoor air pollution. However, due to the

another me-too supplier.

pandemic, air purifiers are a new solution clearly needed to bring

A classic example of this is the typewriter, first brought to market in the late 19th century, redundant 100 years later, but when did dealers start selling them? So yes, early adopters are most often the winners. So how do you get these products in front of your customers?

people into safe, enclosed environments such as schools, offices, GP surgeries, hospitals, hotels, gyms - the list is endless. It may be that, sometime in the future, air purifying systems become part of building regs for new properties but, for the moment, they’re in the growth phase, there’s demand, there’s

Take five products from the catalogue that have a NEW star logo -

margin and, finally, it’s a ‘Trojan Horse’-type product. To explain,

let’s call it the ‘First to Market Project’- and each month were going

the initial conversation with the customer is about this new product but it soon moves onto other solutions that your customer may not know you sell, such as screens and the plethora of workplace/health enhancement products.

Dealers should look to pick up any new product at the start of the growth phase

Finally, it’s clear that employers need to make the workplace safe and inviting for the return of their employees, so that they feel confident and happy. You’ve got the product solutions ready to sell, but there may be other incentives to help get that order. Are your customers aware of super deduction? It’s a government incentive that offers companies

to introduce these new solution-led products to our customers and,

130% first-year relief on qualifying main rate plant and

even if they don’t buy them, it means we’ve got a change to

machinery investments until 31 March 2023. The kinds of

talk to them about, something that they do need. The dealer

assets which may qualify for the super deduction include, but

should really make this an integral part of their sales practice.

are not limited to:

Dealers should make it something they do at the

• solar panels

beginning of every month, and incentivise their salespeople

• computer equipment and servers

to run with the idea. Not enough dealers do this kind of thing

• tractors, lorries, vans

anymore; they secure the business-critical lines, make it simple

• ladders, drills, cranes

for the customer to re-order instantly from an e-commerce site

• office chairs and desks

and that’s it - they shut the door - and 30,000 other products

• electric vehicle charge points

sitting there on their systems just get by-passed.

• refrigeration units

The supermarkets use a technique called ‘Where’s the milk?’ Milk is an essential; you’ll search the supermarket to find it and, on the way, you’ll pick up a few other things. Dealers have to find a

• compressors • foundry equipment. Stick a product under your arm - well, one that will fit! It’s

way to do the same thing, instead of serving up the essential lines

a great opportunity to make that first visit after 15 months and

on a silver plate. The ‘First to Market Project’ may add an element

have something of real interest to talk about.

of interest to one of your salespeople; they might champion the concept, and most manufacturers will back any sales team looking

It’s great fun selling something new, and a good manufacturer will support you all the way.

www.dealersupport.co.uk JUNE 2021 [21]



Darryl Brunt, sales and

critical to ensuring a smooth and productive transformation from

marketing director UK & Ireland,

an established product to its successor.

Fellowes Brands

Advancing technologies, enhanced functions and

We all know that constantly evolving

improved pricing are some of the main reasons for replacing

product developments, and the

existing products.One live example of this is our current

introduction of new products, are the

transition from some of the market’s best-selling shredders

lifeblood of businesses. There’s no

to the newly launched LX Series next generation shredders.

time to stand still, especially in today’s

Not only do the new machines feature improvements such

fast-moving world that’s powered by digital technologies and

as IntellibarTM technology and great new looks, they’re

consumer demand for something better, right now.

also priced to at least match most of the existing shredders

The management of product lifecycles is crucial for knowing

– and, in many cases, improve on them. So, in short, the

when to invest in a new product and the level of attention

consumer is getting a better machine for their money from a

needed to ensure it grows and matures into an admired model

market-leading brand they recognise, thus providing the best

that will set the standard for successful future generations.

possible assurance of a successful transition.

Each stage of the cycle involves costs, challenges, opportunities and risks - but the more you know about the product, and how it is regarded by the consumer, the easier it will be to make key decisions along the way. Winners are easy to see, and it makes sense to invest in their future by making design and function improvements; and providing marketing support, but equally important is the ability to identify a ‘problem child’

Each stage of the cycle involves costs, challenges, opportunities and risks

before it causes long-term damage. At Fellowes, ever-evolving ranges of products and solutions keep us on top of our game - in fact, the only thing that hasn’t

The last 12 months have resulted in many dealers needing

changed in over 10 0 years of manufacturing is a commitment

to be entrepreneurial when it comes to taking on new products.

to quality and a desire to help people be at their best, every

Just think PPE, health and safety products and hygiene cleaning

day, with solutions that work for them.

solutions, including our very own AeraMax air purifiers, which

Introducing product improvements and totally new products

have helped to open up sales conversions and new accounts.

is all about making people’s lives better in one way or the other;

As is the case in many situations, it’s the early adopters

this could be a better performance, a better price, added value,

who have benefitted most. These are the ones who dare to

enhanced features or a myriad of other benefits - but, whatever it

be brave by pulling out all the stops to be first to market

is, it has to make a positive difference in order to really fly.

with something new and different. Fortunately for dealers

We all know that nothing can stay the same forever, but one

who put their confidence in Fellowes products, they do so in

of the scariest challenges in the product lifecycle is managing

the knowledge that we provide them with all the sales tools,

the discontinuation of a best-selling product in favour of a new

videos and marketing materials they need to get off to a

one. Get it wrong and you can quickly see market share nose-

flying start, and maintain a sustained programme of activity

dive; but get it right, and it’s possible to catapult a product out of

and exposure with the minimum of risk.

sight of the competition. A good transitioning strategy over a workable timeline is

[22] JUNE 2021 www.dealersupport.co.uk

In today’s online marketplace it’s very much a case of ‘upload and go’!

Reception furniture from stock



A Sign of the times BEAVERSWOOD may be a new name to the office supplies sector, but its range of products provides resellers a great opportunity to expand their offer to existing customers and break into new markets


he past 16 months have been tough for

keep one or two metres apart, it is about organising a workspace

many office supplies dealers, with the

to be safer and more efficient by communicating directions,

pandemic affecting revenues significantly.

hazards and warnings.

Many found that diversifying into new markets could boost revenues, and this is


still true as people return to the workplace

Beaverswood offers many other products relevant to office

in greater numbers. Buyers are looking for new products such as floor markings to ensure people can return to their workplace safely, which means now is the perfect time for dealers to expand their product offering into this market. Beaverswood can help with this. While the long-established

supplies resellers, such as the racksack® range of space-saving waste segregation products, and Visuclean®, a self-adhesive antimicrobial vinyl product. Visuclean® is impregnated with antimicrobial properties, which means bacteria cannot grow on it and viruses cannot be transmitted through touch. It is ideal for workplace high-touch

company is a well-known and respected supplier in the

points, such as door handles, trolleys, kitchen cabinets or pallet

warehousing and industrial sectors for its range of products, it is

trucks in warehouses. It can be used on practically any surface, cut

now moving into the office products market and can offer dealers

to size and has a working life of about two years before it needs

something new, such as floor markings, signs and other visual

replacing - longer than many equivalent products on the market.

communication products. “Businesses need floor markings and signs, not just in


warehouses but in reception areas, corridors and offices and

Products such as the racksack® and Visuclean® can also help

there is an agile range of products we offer,” says Chris Bevis, key

resellers to move into new markets, Chris adds. “Warehousing,

accounts manager at Beaverswood.

3PL and logistics are growing sectors and office supplies resellers

Beaverswood’s floor markings are durable, with an aggressive

can tap into them,” he says. “They can supply office products

adhesive and anti-slip laminate designed to be long-lasting – and

to the back office, but Beaverwood products also give the

can be used in any type of workplace. It isn’t just about notices to

opportunity to open doors and sell items that are more pertaining

[24] JUNE 2021




to the back-of-house area or warehouse. “While moving into a new sector can be difficult, Beaverswood gives resellers all the support they need to be confident in selling their products. Our reseller pack has everything resellers need to go to market; product descriptions, images, branded and unbranded materials – we even offer the option to brand it with the reseller’s logo. It also includes priced and unpriced materials, videos, blogs that resellers can

Beaverswood gives resellers all the support they need to be confident in selling their products

link back to, training videos, webinars, we can also create web banners, email content and flyers for them.” Another advantage is that Beaverwood does drop-ship

includes impact safety specialists Brandsafe and The Rack

fulfilment. “This means it is risk free – resellers don’t have to

Group. While the companies are specialists in their own

stock our product, they can sell it, place an order with us and we

fields, they work collaboratively to provide services and

will deliver it straight to their customer,” says Chris.“We can use

solutions in the industrial workplace.

the reseller’s branded paperwork or plain notes, so it looks like it comes from the dealer. They don’t have to touch the product.” Jeroen van den Berge, CEO of Beaverswood’s parent

Beaverswood has entered the office products market now after about 18 months of increasing interest from the sector. “We feel the time is right,” says Jim Roberts,

company IWS Group, adds: “We see a lot of convergence in

Beaverswood’s commercial manager. “We have been

the marketplace with resellers offering a one-stop solution,

releasing more products for the office space in recent years,

with an ever-expanding product range, to their customers. For

so it is the next obvious step for us.”

dealers in the office products marketplace, now is the right

As part of the move, Beaverswood has entered a deal

time to adopt diversification and bring new products to their

to activate its catalogue on Fusion Plus. “Dealers are always

customers and use new products to break into new markets.

looking for new, innovative and high-quality products to

“We’re excited to introduce the Beaverswood specialist

promote to their customers, so the timing could not be

range of products because the opportunity fits so well, given

better for Beaverswood to introduce its ranges to the OP

our long-standing history of partnering with resellers to grow

market,” said Steve Bilton, managing director of FusionPlus

a category. Over the years we have centred on taking all the

Data. “Beaverswood recognises that having fantastic

hassle out of the process such that the resellers can focus on

products is one thing, but if the dealer doesn’t have the

serving their customers.”

product content in their back-office and e-commerce systems, they can’t maximise the opportunity. Over 1,000 OP


dealers use our supplier partner content in their systems, so

Wokingham-based Beaverswood was established in 1984,

we are delighted to help Beaverswood overcome this critical

starting out producing self-adhesive numbers and letters.

hurdle to accelerated and sustained success.”

Beaverswood now has more than 1,500 SKUs across 30

If you are interested in becoming a reseller of

product groups and company works with resellers across the

Beaverswood products and would like more information,

UK and Europe.

go to www.beaverswood.co.uk, email the Beaverswood

The company is now part of the IWS Group, which

team on sales@beaverswood.co.uk or call 0118 979 6096.

www.dealersupport.co.uk JUNE 2021 [25]




always pressing on Langstane Press has constantly evolved over its 74 years in business, ensuring it stays on top of what customers want - but the company has never lost sight of the values its success has been built on


anaging director

we’ve run our business in the past year is that

COVID storm. The company continued to

Colin Campbell has

we’ve done almost everything we used to do

operate throughout – it has large NHS

had a long career

physically over Zoom or Microsoft Teams -

contracts to fulfil – but saw its private

with Aberdeen-based

neither of which the company had used

sector sales drop. However, once lockdown

Langstane Press, but

before,” he says. “In the first lockdown we

restrictions started to lift, sales began to recover,

is always willing to

received the instruction to work from home

and this is thanks, in part, to the wide and ever-

learn new skills to help the business – which he

if possible; we sat down to think the next

increasing range of products the company sells.

needed to do very quickly when the

morning and, within three days, we had

COVID-19 pandemic hit.

everybody working from home that could do.”

right back to 1947 when Langstane Press

This helped Langstane to weather the

was started by Colin’s father, also named

“One of the biggest changes to how

[26] JUNE 2021


This evolution of product offering goes


Colin, and his two uncles, a commercial print business selling things like business cards, letterheads and complement slips. “He was selling into offices, and those offices also needed pencils, paper and envelopes, so he started selling those too and it rolled out from there,” says Colin the younger. “Now

who has never met you before.

We are not concerned about the shape of business; we are ready for anything

we sell everything within an office building; that’s how we have grown, and continue to do so. Look at the opportunities in the past 12


“A lot of our growth has been built on this principle – you develop relationships with customers, give them exceptional service and, if you do decide to sell more of a new category or product line, those customers are more likely to add these lines to what they buy from you already.

existing customers. “Growth is a far more achievable

“It very much revolves around relationships with customers, allied to high

months with PPE! Every year we add more

objective if you look to sell more to an

service levels and a willingness to get what

lines which become standard stock items.”

existing customer than find new ones,”

they want, when they want it,” he says. “It’s as

Colin says. “We have existing customers;

simple as that – it’s not rocket science.”


we know them well, they know us well. We

Indeed, this willingness to constantly

have a good reputation, and that allows


diversify its range of products has been

us to significantly convert more of those

Colin took over the running of Langstane

part of the explanation of the company’s

opportunities into sales, rather than if you

when his father retired in 1987, and having

longevity - they always look to sell more to

have to introduce yourself to a new customer

steered the business successfully through

www.dealersupport.co.uk JUNE 2021 [27]



where it’s been needed, you have the best

It very much revolves around relationships with customers...it’s not rocket science

chance to take advantage of the opportunities that come your way as the economy recovers. We are more than ready for that. “We are fundamentally well-structured, so we are not concerned about the shape of business; we are ready for anything,” he says. LOOKING AHEAD While the country is still in the pandemic

several recessions, he is not perturbed by the

Colin is careful not to set any plans in

one over the past year caused by the pandemic.

concrete as he knows anything could still

“We have found from the previous

agile enough to take advantage of

you have to work hard to come through

whatever comes along.”

but, at the other end, there are a lot of

That said, the company is preparing for

opportunities. That is the time when you can

its 75th anniversary celebrations in 2022.

get some of your biggest growth spurts.”

“We want to say to our customers - and

With this in mind, Colin has continued

potential customers - that we have been here

to invest in Langstane, including redesigning

for a long time, and will be here for a long

and relaunching its webstore.

time to come, and everything we are offering

“We were going to do it anyway, but we didn’t hold back and wait until after the

is what they are looking for.” Colin is still looking positively to the

pandemic had passed,” he says. “It is a core

future. “I’m always Mr Optimistic,” he says.

and important part of our business and our

“Despite the unprecedented year, I have

industry; if you want to be successful, your

not lost any of that. Having come through

webstore has to be state-of-the-art; if it isn’t,

previous recessions, you gain that confidence

you fall by the wayside. We are going to keep

that you can get through it, and come out

investing in it and it will be a stronger part of

the other end when there will be good times

our offering, going forward.

again. We are confident that we will see the

“Any business that has stood still, it is going to be a hard recovery out of the

[28] JUNE 2021

happen. “We just need to be flexible and

years of recessions that it is a challenge, and

numbers going up again next year. “It might take a couple of years to get

pandemic - but, if you’ve been nimble and

back to where we were pre-COVID, but

flexible and have invested in your business

that’s fine. We are here for the long run.”



m @ho Office Furniture Specialists



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full range supplier


delivering service



Information security paramount for schools Schools, colleges and universities hold large amounts of sensitive information – both digital and physical - and need help to keep it secure when in use, stored or being disposed of n common with many


“Educational establishments need to have

that educational establishments understand

sectors over the past

a clear data policy to control and manage

the security issues that arise with digitisation,

year, schools, colleges

their data. Different types of data have

adding that dealers have a role to play here.

and universities have

different GDPR-required life spans, and this

accelerated their use

meta data should be tracked alongside every

universities, dealers should always

of digital technologies,

“When working with schools or

document. Fujitsu offer the ability to scan

encourage best practice in data security,”

not just in their offices but in classrooms too.

documents securely into the cloud, apply

he says. “This includes ensuring customers

However, with digital transformation comes the

automatic retention periods, and perform

have the right information about any

need for security to be re-thought too.

the optical content recognition which makes

present risks and regulations, all the way

content valuable and insightful.”

through from pre-sales consultancy to post-

“Digitisation offers many time and cost benefits – no need for filing cabinets

Andrew points out that that human

sales service.”

and storage space, no more hunting for

error is still the main culprit when it comes

information, and a reduced risk of loss

to data breaches, so staff training is key to


through fire, flooding or theft,” notes Andrew

preventing errors. “Regular data protection

Paul adds that, when it comes to common

Cowling, senior channel marketing specialist

training educates staff on the dangers of weak

digital access routes within schools, such as

at PFU (EMEA) Ltd, a Fujitsu company.

passwords, unlocked computers and offers

multifunction printers (MFPs), dealers can

“However, storing confidential

strategies to protect personal information.

provide peace-of-mind by recommending

information digitally comes with its own

“Training is the first step, but the goal

devices that have security at their core.

challenges, including risks of hacking, access

needs to be to build a culture of continuous

“MFPs can come with data encryption built-

rights, identity theft and fraud, as well as

privacy compliance throughout all

in as standard,” he says. “Furthermore, it is

the need to comply with the General Data

stakeholders in the educational establishment.”

possible to add on software that provides

Protection Regulation (GDPR) by destroying data when appropriate.

[30] JUNE 2021


Paul Leach, dealer sales director at Sharp Business Systems UK, agrees that it is important

more comprehensive security and reaches the highest industry standards. Print








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control, or print management solutions, are

device information stored on the HDD or

proving to be a popular way for schools and

SSD of the device.

universities to further secure printed data. “These solutions manage each print job

There are also solutions to help ward off

Cameron Mitchell, business unit leader (indirect) at Konica Minolta Business Solutions (UK) Ltd, adds that

any external data attacks. “Kyocera’s secure

managed print solutions not only provide a

in the cloud or on premise; they can only

boot feature ensures that the MFP or printer

way of optimising a school’s costs, but will also

then be completed through authentication

boots using only authorised firmware/BIOS,”

enhance security in ways that disparate legacy

by the user at the device. This greatly

says Michele. “Run time integrity check helps

hardware would struggle to achieve.

reduces the risk of a data breach or physical

“While remote printing has many

documents being left at the printer and lost.

benefits, there are potential security issues

If the print job is not completed by the user it will be automatically deleted by the MFP – after all, securely destroying data is just as important as housing it securely.” Michele Mabilia, head of product marketing at Kyocera Document Solutions

People don’t appreciate how much they need to spend to get a decent shredder

with processed documents being left on the printer – which risks breaching data protection regulations such as GDPR. An approach we have taken at Konica Minolta is ensuring documents don’t print until users identify themselves at the printer,

(U.K.) Ltd, also believes in the importance of

which significantly reduces the risk of

print security. “For example, Kyocera offers

confidential information and personal data

print and release options, via an individual

protect MFPs and printers during power-up

PIN code or with card access, as well as end-

and connection to the network - the optimum

Cameron adds that it is important that

to-end encryption and network security.”

time for most attacks. Interface and USB block

confidential documents are clearly marked

can be used to prevent data leakage too.”

as such, and a warning given before they are

He adds that purchasers should look out for security standards, such as the common

Michele adds that it is prudent for schools

falling into the wrong hands.”

printed. “In some cases it may be prudent to

criteria certification (ISO15408) which verifies

and universities to carry out a risk assessment

lock certain electronic documents from being

that security functions are correctly performed,

that identifies key vulnerabilities, and the

printed, to ensure only physically-secured

and the IEEE 2600 standards - an international

impact these would have on data, information,

print devices can be used, or to ensure that

security standard for hard copy devices.

compliance and governance in order to assess

only those with the right security credentials/

their position, and determine what their

authorisation can print them. Education-

budget, ideally, needs to be.

focused dealers need to ensure schools fully

Encryption functions are also available; these encrypt documents, user-settings and

[32] JUNE 2021


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understand the security benefits and features

maybe ought to consider going to P-5,” he says.

a time - without the need for constant watching

of their print investments and, if required, help

“A single shredded sheet of P-5 has 19.5 million

and unblocking - needs to be factored into the

them to source more suitable alternatives.”

combinations to put it back together again.”

overall cost of the machine.

Cameron adds that it is important to wipe

He says that dealers should encourage

the hard drives of any applicable devices at

schools to invest in a decent shredder, rather


the end of a contract, to ensure that they are

than a cheaper option, as the latter tend not

Of course, before documents are shredded, they

entirely free of customer data.

to last long in environments where a lot of

need to be stored, points out Leon Haigh, UK

shredding is done.

sales manager at Phoenix Safe. “Dealers in the


education sector should be aware of the need to

While digital security is important, many

provide a security solution, whether that’s a fire

documents are still held in a physical format, which means security solutions such as shredders are as important as ever, as Mark Harper, head of sales UK&I - Office

Digitisation offers many time and cost benefits

Technology at HSM, explains.

safe for the secure storage of paper records or for data being stored on digital media, like hard drives and USB sticks, or a security safe to keep student or staff belongings,” he says. “With the majority students back in

“Schools handle a lot of sensitive personal

traditional education establishments, it won’t

information, and they should be disposing of

“It is about safeguarding personal

things properly by shredding them,” he says.

information appropriately,” he says. “People

arrives once more. Phoenix has specific

Mark adds that documents should not

be long before a more traditional exam season

don’t appreciate how much they need to spend

products suitable for the secure storage of

be shredded with a strip cut shredder because

to get a decent shredder - however, if you buy

question papers, and any other confidential

it is too easy to put documents back together

a decent shredder that does 30 sheets at a time,

materials, distributed to centres in advance of

again. Instead, schools should go for cross-cut

it should last eight-to-10 years, rather than

examinations; these products are compliant

shredders of P-4 security standard, which

buying one for £150 that lasts for six months.”

with the requirements set out by the Joint

means a document is cut into at least 1,000

The staff time saved when a good, fit-for-

Council for Qualifications, such as key-locking

pieces. “For more sensitive documents schools

purpose shredder is disposing of many sheets at

fire and security cupboards.”

[34] JUNE 2021


Model Code Sheets Auto Feed Sheets Manual P-Security Cut Type Bin Size Run Time

300M RM38761

300X RM30958

225M RM60626

225X RM33949

150M RM50465

150X RM50468

100M RM60622

100X RM50463

50X RM30962














































1 hour

1 hour

30 mins

30 mins

30 mins

30 mins

20 mins

20 mins

10 mins

Tel: 0844 980 8000 Web: www.vowwholesale.co.uk


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Delivering Organisational Intelligence: What, why and how Every business wants to be as clever, effective & profitable as possible. Understanding the challenges 50% of organisations find digital transformation a challenge. 35% don’t have a clear plan for achieving digital transformation. You can download Fujitsu's Organisational Intelligence Report at northamber.com/fujitsu .

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Time to ‘clean up’? ack, more employees b g in m co el w e ar s Workplace and cleanliness and infection control are uppermost in employers’ minds. Dealers have a crucial role in ensuring people hav e safe spaces to wor k in


s lockdown measures

“There is an element of educating the

continue to be reigned

customer on the benefits of some of these

back, and something

systems and solutions, and that’s where

approaching ‘normal’

working with a proactive supplier can help

life returns, increasing

resellers to sell new products and solutions.

numbers of people are

At Beaverswood we provide our resellers

returning to the workplace. In the working week 21-25 April, 58% of

with a toolkit of support - from branded literature and other promotional material

workers left their homes for work, according

right through to product training -

to figures from the Office for National

enabling resellers to grow both revenue

Statistics - up 14% on the period from 10-

and their customer loyalty.”

14 February. This figure is set to increase further in the weeks to come. However, this return is anything but


There are plenty of opportunities for

normal, as Jim Roberts, product manager at

dealers, such as providing supplies including

Beaverswood, explains. “As businesses

sanitisers and wipes to encourage employees

return to the workplace, and confidence

to regularly cleanse their hands and wipe

grows, there will be a cultural shift and a

down shared surfaces and equipment after

new attitude and awareness to infection

use, says Nick Revell, product manager for

control,” he says.

Kensington, Europe, Middle East and Africa.

“This will give resellers the opportunity

[38] JUNE 2021


“However, for these protocols and

to support their customers to give staff the

measures to be effective, they will require

confidence to return to work safely, by

active participation from staff,” he says.

providing simple and effective solutions with

“It can be a hassle to keep up with, and it

innovative products.

is difficult to ensure that cleaning is being


handled thoroughly enough. “For instance, keyboards and mice are two of the top five five areas for crosscontamination in an office environment. In response, Kensington has launched a range of hygiene-based products; for example, our washable keyboards and mice can simply be washed under a tap after use,” he says. UV monitor stands with sanitisation compartments are also likely to be popular, Nick adds. “It’s a simple device that offers a more thorough clean to protect office

“High screens can be added to existing

For these protocols and measures to be effective, they will require active participation from staff

workers from bacteria and pathogens via UVC technology.” Lawrence Savage, marketing manager at


furniture to provide a protective barrier, whether on single desks, bench desk clusters, meeting areas or social spaces. Floor standing desk dividers are also available to sit on the floor and rest on desktops, tabletops and workstations to negate the need to reconfigure existing spaces by applying appropriate distance between people. Having protective screens with antimicrobial treatments, or bleach cleanable products, are just as important to protect

level, such as antibacterial upholstery

employees in the fight against microbes.”

coatings, down to more basic materials

ExaClair, adds that more products like this

with bacteria-repelling qualities, such as


will be developed as businesses continue to

brass,” he adds.

Meanwhile, washing and sanitising hands

adapt their working environments. “In addition to the massive surge in

“Desk divider screens are a good example

regularly and thoroughly will remain

of a traditional product group, basically

important. “Especially when people are

demand for PPE items - such as screens,

consisting of wood, foam and fabric, which

working in close proximity, and using the

visors, sanitising stations and social-

has been transformed into a hygiene-specific

same shared spaces,” says Claire Negri,

distancing signage - organisations are now

solution with the offer of fully-encompassing

trade marketing executive at Durable

seeking products designed to combat the

Perspex screens - surpassing the purpose of

(UK) Ltd. “Placing disinfectant dispensers

spread of viruses within their premises,

their original forms. At the constituent level,

with signs provides a constant reminder

including more modular workstations and

wipe clean fabrics, through to antibacterial

about good hygiene practices. The use of

touchless entry systems,” he says.

coated upholsteries - though both long-

contactless bins is rising and keeping desks

established - have come to the fore

clear and clean is advised.”

For instance, says Lawrence, ExaClair has developed filing and desktop accessories where the raw materials used in their

because of the pandemic. “It is our responsibility as suppliers to

There will also be demand for floor markings and professional signage to create

manufacturing processes are treated with

inform resellers of our existing solutions

space, Claire adds. “Placing markings on the

an organic antimicrobial additive, which

that are ready for sale, as well as those

floor helps people to judge distances more

gives extra protection against the spread

new innovations which meet this evolving

accurately, and enables visitors to follow a

of bacteria, viruses, mould and fungi,

requirement –which, ultimately, need to be

one-way system if one is in place. Markings

eliminating them by more than 99.9%.

communicated to the end user.”

can also be placed on chairs to highlight that

Simon Howarth, marketing and design

they are not in use - although remember


manager at Dams Furniture, is also convinced

to choose a removable marking that can be

Jon Askill, marketing manager at Nautilus

that screens that limit the risk of airborne

easily removed at a later date.

Designs, agrees that there has been increased

germs between colleagues are important.

“It takes just 0.15 seconds for our

“If colleagues are too close, and

brains to decide whether or not what we

demand for products such as antibacterial shelving solutions. “We are also seeing a

workplaces too densely populated, then

see is relevant. So use straightforward and

steady increase in off-the-shelf product

people will naturally feel uncomfortable

professional signage to deliver important

innovations and solutions at component

in the space.”

safety messages clearly.”

www.dealersupport.co.uk www.dealersupport.co.uk JUNE MAY 2021 [39]



Presenting new solutions for educators W

The pandemic meant many schools, colleges and universities – as well as businesses – turned to technology to deliver lessons and training. These changes look set to stay, which presents opportunities for dealers

hen the pandemic

notes, the move towards using technology to

don’t just want to deliver PowerPoints, but live

hit last year many

deliver learning had been ongoing for the

video and conversation,” says Chris.

children and young

past four-to-five years.

people were told not to attend school. It

“In relation to training rooms – and

“The pandemic has accelerated this,”

universities have been doing this for a while,

he says. “A lot of companies were looking

and have pushed it forward quite a bit – they

also meant that training in businesses, often

at things like distance learning, and schools

are still set up as traditional training spaces, but

done in one room, was cancelled.

had created some online systems that kids

they add additional equipment such as mics

could do bitesize work on, but the idea

and cameras so all sessions can be recorded.

But learning had to continue, and ways were quickly found around the

of training people remotely to save on

lockdown restrictions, often involving the

travel time hadn’t been pushed that hard

boxes to allow you to stream material to

use of technology to livestream lessons

on. The pandemic has brought it forward

multiple platforms. For example, you can

online. Now the restrictions are starting to

considerably and, having had to do it, they

do a presentation and stream it directly

ease - but educators are looking to retain

have realised how efficient it can be.”

to YouTube so everyone can watch the

this new technology alongside more traditional methods. As Chris Southern, general sales manager for enterprise solutions at Midwich,

[40] JUNE 2021


As more education establishments and

“What has been added recently are the

presentation, and we can put live graphics

businesses move to digital solutions, they

over the top of it. This is becoming

require the equipment to deliver lessons or

increasingly popular.”

training as effectively as possible. “People now

The equipment educators use are





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People now don’t just want to deliver PowerPoints, but live video and conversation

also being digitised, such as interactive


whiteboards. “These are now being built-in

Simone Martorina, business manager VI at

so that teachers can draw onto the screen and

Epson, agrees that demand for technology

it easier than ever for audiences to connect

that output can be streamed at the same time,”

and digital solutions continues to increase in

with, and participate in, a presentation from

says Chris. “Use of interactive products is

training and education. For instance, one of the

their own devices, creating an effortlessly

increasing massively in training facilities.”

effects of the pandemic and social distancing

collaborative learning experience for everyone.”

more engaging experience for your audience. “Innovative technology like this makes

regulations is that education establishments


require larger spaces for in-person sessions.


Chris adds that many customers are

“This means bigger-sized displays and

However, classrooms and training spaces

future-proofing the equipment they are

improved technology are essential to enable

aren’t going exclusively digital – there is

buying. “Even though 4k isn’t widely

high-quality learning or training experiences

still demand for more traditional products,

streamed at the moment as a bandwidth,

in these settings,” she says.

such as drywipe boards, according to a

it is inevitably heading that way,” he says.

“Flat panels, commonly used in many

spokesperson from Eastpoint.

“Many interactive screens and cameras being

school environments, offer little scope

bought are 4k, and customers want boxes

for adjusting room placement or screen

environmentally-friendly option for the

that can handle 4k streaming. Most people

size. About 58% of students aged 12-22

classroom,” says their spokesperson. “They

are using this level of technology now and,

years say they, typically, can’t read all the

are lightweight, and easy for children

if you are shelling out on kit for training,

content on a 70-inch flat panel; this poses a

to hold; teachers can see an entire class

you want to keep it for at least three years

serious concern with further distancing in

of answers, and check progress and

without changing it.”

classrooms in place.

understanding, without leaving the front.

Customers also want support and

“The benefit of projection is the

“Drywipe boards are a sustainable,

“Instead of using endless reams of

cover for such equipment. “Things like

flexibility this technology offers. Displays

paper and exercise books, mistakes are

warranty, ‘phone and live chat support

size can be scaled from 30 inches up to 500

easily wiped away and the boards can be

facilities are important, and some people

inches, enabling educators to adapt their

scanned to store progress digitally if needed.

look for that level of support as they are

presentations to both audience and room,

very new to the technology,” Chris adds.

without being limited by the technology.

“This backup and support is becoming a

Ultra-short throw projection is an ideal

“But they are not just for education. Drywipe boards are great for use in public sector organisations, offices, call centres,

key requirement. People aren’t just shopping

way to generate a large screen size without

retail settings - and even at home. Use for

on price anymore; they realise the value they

having to worry about interfering with the

inspirational message boards, to-do lists,

gain from good support in order to get the

projector’s light path. Interactive projection,

staff on duty information, target

most out of the equipment.”

meanwhile, makes presentations and training a

monitoring, and more.”

[42] JUNE 2021


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LIVE IT Life hack Shake your hard-boiled eggs. The key to making sure your egg’s yolk is cooked all the way through is shaking it when it’s done. When it feels like a rock, it’s fully cooked.

Smile for a while


BBC News has reported that a giant painted smiley face, preserved for almost 50 years on the wall of a ‘happy house’, is still bringing joy to residents on a housing estate. Valerie Wright, a mother of five, painted the smiling yellow face on her Norwich home in the early 1970s. Subsequent residents kept the painting -


although it has faded over the years, and lost part of its head when a roof was lowered. A recent photo on social media elicited memories from hundreds of people which Mrs Wright, now 83, said was “amazing”. “It was an incredibly happy house,” said Jeannette Wright-Russell, who grew up in the north Earlham home with her mother and four brothers. “When mum moved here, she didn’t know anyone, so she painted the face


because she just wanted to make people smile.”

Quote of the month “Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t, you’re right.” Henry Ford

[44] JUNE 2021





Did you know? Giant pandas eat nearly 13kg of bamboo a day – that’s over five tonnes per year!

A time capsule containing a sample of rock and dirt as old as the solar system will drop from outer space into the Utah desert on 24 September 2023, BBC News has reported. This is what NASA has planned for its historic OsirisRex asteroid probe, which began its trek home in May. Its precious cargo of 60g of ancient debris

PUB QUIZ 1. What is the capital of Poland?

2. Which musician’s real name is Reginald Kenneth Dwight? 3. What was the most downloaded app of 2020? 4. Europe is separated from Africa by which sea? 5. What is the collective name for a group of crows? Answers: 1. Warsaw 2. Elton John 3. Tik Tok 4. Mediterranean Sea 5. A murder

Out of this world

from the near-earth asteroid Bennu is the largest sample collected since the Apollo Moon missions. Scientists believe it may

Knock me down with a feather

provide clues about the formation

Get jabbed before getting fanged!

of the solar system. The probe

‘Dracula’s castle’ is offering visitors a COVID jab

has been mapping the surface

and free visit to its torture exhibition, according to Sky News.

of Bennu since 2018, breaking the record for the closest ever

‘Bran Castle’ is thought to be the inspiration for the vampire’s home in Bram Stoker’s famous novel Dracula but, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, visitors are more likely to leave with puncture marks in their

orbit of a planetary body by a

arms than their necks this month. In common with most of the world’s

spacecraft. Its historic, ‘touch-and-

tourist attractions, the castle in Romania’s Carpathian mountains has

go’, sample grab from the ancient

seen a drop in the number of tourists this year, and so has become...a

asteroid’s surface in October 2020 lasted only a few seconds but left

COVID-19 vaccination centre instead! No appointment is needed and vaccine recipients also get free entry to the castle’s exhibit of 52 medieval torture tools. What’s not to like?

scientists ‘exuberant’.

www.dealersupport.co.uk JUNE 2021 [45]



Bringing hope, peace and unity to the good brethren of business supplies

We’ve all comfort-eaten our way through the last year, and the good Father is no exception! So, how is he shifting the pounds?


During lockdown

seem to come to the same conclusions,

only when they get a complaint from a

everyone who is

but everyone’s eyes have been opened

customer - which has resulted in them

normally in the

in some way to the importance of diet

putting on weight. Others have only been

office has been on at

and nutrition.

eating when a customer gets a perfect

least one diet after

My current diet involves doing

delivery - and those people have been

piling on the pounds whilst working

away with all carbohydrates and

from home. I’ve been over-indulging in

eating only meat and nuts and prunes

the communion wine and wafers and, as

- I’ve added the prunes myself for fear

logistics, warehousing, IT, HR, security

a result, the rope around my cassock has

of getting constipated like last time, and

and catering has been trying to

reached breaking point. Even my

having to field questions from everyone

convince everyone that they should

sandals were coming apart at the seams!

about whether or not I’ve been to the

lose the pounds by following her

So I’ve been listening to everyone, and

toilet. So far, it is going well, and I

cabbage soup diet. She’s been on it

taking advice; it’s been a real learning

have lost a few pounds and have begun

since the start of lockdown and,

experience to discover what people in

to feel a bit more like my old, pre-

although she no longer has any

the office do to keep themselves healthy

lockdown self.

friends, she doesn’t mind because

and lose some weight. During our weekly Zoom calls the

The ideas have been coming thick and fast! Some of the staff have been trying

losing loads of weight. Mrs O’ Reilly, who looks after our

the pubs haven’t been open anyway. Hopefully, things are getting back

subject always turns to diets, and how

an intermittent eating regime where they

to normal now, and we won’t be able

many biscuits it’s okay to eat daily, and

only eat at certain times, and then have a

to focus so much on diets and things,

how many calories are in a crate of wine.

break for a few hours. Some have taken

but at least - I hope - we’ve all been

Arguments ensue, and people never

this even further and have started to eat

able to learn something.

[46] JUNE 2021




Speaking with old friends HG Wells once said, “What really matters is what we do with what we have”. He was an honoured guest speaker of the Society of Old Friends in 1918. Today, as Old Friend Steve Harrop interviews president Steve Robinson, and committee member and the society’s head of recruitment, Ian Buckley, these words clearly have a remarkable resonance today


Over the 112 years

Then we held a Christmas Clachan

since the Society

with a difference – and the difference was

of Old Friends was

the talented Jon Culshaw. For 45 minutes,

formed, in a small

Jon enthralled around 150 members,

pub off London’s

family and friends with his extraordinary

Steve Robinson Committee Member, Society of old Friends Go to dealersupport. co.uk to listen to the full TUNED IN interview.

Regents Street, its mission has been - and

repertoire of impressions. Unsurprisingly,

continues to be - to encourage good

‘The Donald’ and Boris Johnson featured

fellowship and camaraderie among its

strongly, as did Frank Bruno, David

physical events soon, beginning with

many members and guests.

Attenborough, a few James Bonds, various

a Summer event in July, a London

football managers, a hilarious Michael

Clachan in September and, on 14th

be hosting two guests nights, one AGM,

McIntyre, a booming Brian Blessed and a

October, we are planning to hold our

and four or five smaller, informal meetings

tribute to the inimitable Terry Wogan.

autumn dinner with a very special guest

In any normal year, the society would

known as ‘Clachans’ held in London and the Midlands. But this has been a year unlike

After that fabulous December evening, the society decided to try

speaker - Gyles Brandreth. It has been a truly extraordinary year

something totally different and, in

and, as the society returns to physical

February, organised a Magical Spring

events, the popularity of this inclusive and

Clachan with the excellent magician

accessible virtual format will be something

lockdowns, eliminated any opportunity

Lee Smith. Again, the virtual event was

to consider for the future.

for the physical socialising that has always

supported by more than 100 attendees

been a fundamental cornerstone of the

who were treated to a remarkably

be proud that, despite the turbulence

society’s calendar.

microscopic scrutiny of the trickery and

of the last 15 months, the society has

slight-of-hand of a masterful magician.

continued to add new members - and

any other. The pandemic, and resultant

The committee decided to try a virtual Members’ Gathering and AGM

Most recently, 54 members attended

in September, and we were delighted that

the 2021 Members’ Gathering and

nearly 50 members participated, and took

AGM in April.

obvious pleasure of being ‘together’!

Hopefully, we will be returning to

HG Wells would, undoubtedly,

hopes to welcome many more. To discover more about the Society of Old Friends please have a look here: http://thesocietyofoldfriends.co.uk/

www.dealersupport.co.uk JUNE 2021 [47]

THE independent event for UK dealers PUT THIS IN YOUR DIARY! Thursday 21st October 2021 Ricoh Arena, Coventry

Profile for Intelligent Media Solutions

Dealer Support June 2021  

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