Quantum expands direct sales force

Storage vendor Quantum has announced plans to expand its end-user sales force, thus taking a greater share of the enterprise storage market through increased direct sales.

Speaking at a press conference last week, Quantum executive vice president Thomas Scott told ARN direct sales already represented 5 per cent of the company's enterprise market.

"We are looking to expand the overall proportion of direct sales to roughly 15 per cent by the end of this fiscal year," Scott said.

Quantum's end-user sales force is set to expand in order to tap into what Scott describes as "untapped market opportunities. We are hoping the expansion of our end-user sales force will generate new end-user contacts rather than compete with our existing channel partners," Scott said.

While the direct sales force will be based in Brisbane, Scott said that there would be no specific regional focus. He added that Quantum had decided to expand the direct sales approach because it was well suited to the enterprise sector. He also confirmed that there were no plans at this stage to expand the direct sales model in to volume markets.

"This won't affect volume sales in any way, we are only interested in selling directly to large corporations. The direct approach takes a lot more effort than a classical distribution model, but we are compensated with higher margins," he said.

Quantum's intention to expand its direct sales force was initially canvassed by company CEO Michael Brown, as part of a strategy to expand the company's share of the storage management solution market. The strategy also includes providing ATL backups for new elements of the enterprise solution and expanded primary storage, networking and software solutions.

Despite the announcement of the planned direct sales expansion into the enterprise sector, Francis Yu, managing director of Quantum Asia Pacific, highlighted the importance of the distribution channel.

Addressing media representatives from throughout the region, Yu identified the need for vendors to maintain close ties with distributors in order to fully understand the needs of the end user.

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