AMD announces Australian focus

After a tumultuous period, chip manufacturer AMD has come out fighting, announcing an increased focus on the Australian market. And in an effort to improve its local market share and show support for the Australian channel, the company has welcomed new staff to its Sydney-based ranks.

Nicola Bond has taken on the position of senior marketing executive and John Robinson is set to take on the role of country manager, Australia/New Zealand.

Singapore-based AMD product marketing manager Wee Yep Yin recently visited Sydney to announce the appointments and clear the air after the re-marking dispute soured AMD channel relationships.

According to Yep Yin, the company has timed the announcement to coincide with the release of its new Duron family of low-cost processors, to reassure the channel that the new product line will bring with it a new Australian focus for AMD.

"We are planning to expand our Australian presence in recognition of its importance to AMD," Yep Yin said. "The new appointments are only the first step of a planned further expansion of the Australian offices."

The new-look AMD Australian branch will pave the way for the launch of the "Mustang", "Corvett", and "Sledge Hammer" forecast for later this year.

Yep Yin also said AMD intended to focus more resources on moving into the commercial market. "We have identified some important opportunities in the commercial market in Australia, and we intend to develop into this area."

With a background in law and extensive experience with Symantec, Bond's appointment is an important part of the new AMD approach. "I worked with Symantec through a similar phase," Bond explained. "Like AMD, the company shifted from retail into the commercial space."

While Bond is positive about her new role, she is not yet prepared to make any major comments on AMD channel relationships until she is more familiar with AMD's partners.

Channel reaction to the news has been generally positive, however, resellers that found themselves caught up in the re-marking dispute are still calling for compensation.

Roderick Seow, managing director of online reseller rtv Computers, said that while the changes are a good thing, they fail to address the problems associated with the re-marked chips which appeared throughout Australia in May and June.

"It is great that they are putting on new staff, but they are still trying to sweep the whole re-marking issue under the carpet," Seow said.

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