Digi takes bat and ball and goes home

After months of uncertainty about its channel strategy, connectivity vendor Digi International Inc. has slinked back to the US, closing its Australian office and allegedly laying off its staff, Computerworld has learned.

Digi pulled up stumps on its Australian operations six months after the contentious appointment of Tech Pacific Australia Pty. Ltd. as an additional distributor incited confusion in the vendor's channel. Tech Pacific joined Computer Hardware Australia and Brocker Technology Group (formerly Sealcorp) as the vendor's distribution model.

Digi Australia managing director Gary Spooner was unwilling to comment on the closing, however it is assumed Spooner will stay on to wrap up the vendor's presence over the next few weeks.

With two value-added distributors and one time-and-place distributor (Tech Pacific), Digi's suppliers have been quick to assure the channel that it will remain business as usual.

David Higgins, CEO Tech Pacific Asia-Pacific, claims the channel will not face any product shortages, while a spokesperson for Brocker confirmed the distributor will continue to support the vendor's products.

Meanwhile, Digi's competitors have seen the departure of the vendor's local presence as a distinct opportunity to step in and offer their products as alternatives.

Paul Kern, Australia/New Zealand regional manager of competing connectivity vendor Perle Systems, believes Digi has been losing market share for some time and as a result the closing of Digi's Australian office "comes as no surprise."

"When they appointed a time-and-place distributor, the obvious step was for them to close the local office," says Kern.

Story courtesy Australian Reseller News: http://www.arnnet.com.au/

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