Chesapeake & Midlantic | 07/27/15 01:20pm
I like it. You can have a mindset without a slogan, but a slogan helps.
My belief is that the more a distributor tries to push end to end solutions, or complete solutions then they are trying to no longer be a distributor but trying to be a solutions provider or integrator. The only differenciating thing between that model and a reseller/installer are the installers.
The only reason companies like Anixter are pushing this is that they realize their contribution to the channel is shrinking and they are basically just moving boxes, which in todays world, is not enough to justify existance. The only value I currently see is stocking large qnty of items and providing credit facilities to customers. It would be so much easier for us if we could buy our larger items like cameras and NVR's direct from the manufacturer as our current suppliers are mostly just that, box movers.
Here's another Anixter recent ad.
Not sure what it means:
I have only had brief experience directly with Anixter. It was so bad I would never consider them for anything. The inside rep didn't know anything about video products and didn't even know his own system well enough to provide pricing on product. I actually had to look at their on line catalog to tell him that he had a product that I was looking for and the part number so he could provide a price. (this particular product was an Exacq hybrid server)
I have had good experience with Tri-ed. I tell them what I want and they tell me price and delivery. Both of which are usually good. Unfortunately Anixter owns Tri-ed, so It's probably only a matter of time until they screw that up to.
| IPVMU Certified | 08/02/15 03:33pm
What's worse than a box mover is when distributors compete head to head with integrators selling directly to the end consumers. That is constantly happening in the south Florida market. That should probably be the subject of another discussion.
Anixter and Graybar both original electrical suppliers saw low voltage as profitable and opened up those divisions. Now they see access, CCTV, and security in the same light. They have already been selling this for years just not doing good at it; price or knowledge.
I couldn't resist replying to this. I have dealt with Anixter from the top down for a decade. They are the following: 1 Opportunistic 2 Heavy handed 3 NOT "demand creators" contrary to their claim 4 Selling to end users in our business and have done so since first getting into security products 5 Simply a bank for manufacturers 6 Overstaffed on the outside sales team and underprepared on the inside sales team...and neither group is excellent at anything 7 Shameless about asking to register projects for which they had nothing to do with "creating the demand" 8 Probably not going to improve anything at Tri-Ed since Tri-Ed does what they do better than Anixter...but that won't stop Anixter from eventually changing things at Tri-Ed for the worse.
Anixter is and has always been a competitor, not a distributor! Any Integrator who does business with them shoud have his/her head examined! For as long as I remember, Anixter has sold security products direct to the end user, for exactly the same wholesale price they offer Integrators.
We would not buy so much as a connector from them!
The same thing can be said for Silmar Electronics in Miami,
"There is not enough margin in our proposal" to honor our proposal. They cannot co-ordinate a large rollout.
I work for a manufacturer and I have this to say to Anixter as they piss me off. Quit F'ing selling to end users and making my job more difficult.
There has been countless times as a manufacturer I've caught them selling direct to end user and cutting the integrator who did the work out of the deal.
I think the answer is having more manufacturers allowing installers buy direct. If the channel is broken and not working, then its time to reinvent things.
Anixter can be direct competition with any integrator out there and sell directly to the end user and a lot of the manufacturers turn a blind eye to it. this is not good for any integrator out there. This also happens with a lot of regional distributors especially on large project so what are integrators to do? Distribution is a very necessary part of the security business due to the fact that most manufactures are not set up to handle the large volumes of orders shipping all over the country. Most manufacturers also do not have the capability of offering special financing options, project staging, etc… especially on large projects like a true national distributor. Distributors should be your partners and helping you win business by giving you the pricing, inventory, and financing you need to win projects. Should you need more technical questions every manufacture as a team of people to help.
I work for a national distributor (Wynit) we do not sell to end user's and there is a zero tolerance policy for this. in order to set up an account with us you would have to have a valid sales use tax certificate for your state to do business. we also require a full credit application with references and we will research the company before we do business. We will also sign an NDA and non compete with our partners as well. So yes there are good distributors out there that understand the role of distribution in the channel. In my opinion it is not the job of distributor to call on end user’s, spec projects, or decide who a project goes to. it is our job to support our partners as they are bringing us opportunity, work with manufacturers to secure the best possible pricing by understanding the project and challenges with the project, knowing manufacturer programs and pricing, to pass these discounts on to the reseller, work with our finance department to come up with the best terms for a project, and provide logistics for the project. This puts our partners in the best situation to win an opportunity and allows them to win it not on just price but to also have the availability of adding their value to the deal. Distribution is about true partnership and not just moving boxes but there has to be trust between partners for this concept to work. There are some of us out there that understand this concept and our entire business is modeled on this. Why would you ever want to compete with your partner? A lot of integrators understand this concept and more and more are catching on. This is something that Amazon will never be able to accomplish because they are just a box mover. As far as Anixter it is up to them to do business how they want to do business but at the end of the day it’s the integrators decision on how they want to do business with and who they can trust.
IPVMU Certified | 08/03/15 05:15pm
I get emails like this from Anixter pretty much daily. The "Ask an Expert" section is a relatively new (year or two) and probably could go on the other conversation about Anixter. Gist is they sell to anyone that will buy, but their prices are still higher than we can get elsewhere. So if you are using them for parts/pieces you are hurting yourself. Once you add your mark up your price will be well above what it should be. I think the ONLY thing we use them for now is wire and that is still hit or miss.
Anixter is a great company. Having worked there and experienced it firsthand, I truly believe this. That said, their biggest weakness isn't their messaging / marketing...it's their ability to execute on the messaging consistantly across their branches. This is almost always the hardest part since each branch is run individually and markets vary, but it lends itself to disbelief when even a single branch does something contrary to what is being told to the market by corporate.
For instance...the selling direct issue. I know that some branches do this, and for some, it's extremely limited and easy to justify. For others, they just don't get it and act in a way totally against what it is they preach. At the end of the day, the actions of some branches hurt the credibility of others that act responsibly, and it all comes down to inconsistency -- the corporate message is not consistent with the activity at the branch level.
To be fair, I have mostly seen the violating branches to be those that have a much smaller security footprint, as the larger branches that do a lot tend to respect the rules a lot more because they know by breaking them, it hurts their business. Unfortunately, word travels quickly and the actions of even one salesperson at Anixter can negatively affect the credibility of many other branches.
I'm not really sure how the integration of Tri-Ed has played into all this, or if it has at all. I'd guess that by moving all the pure security dealers / integrators over to the Tri-Ed side of the house eliminates the potential for the inside salespeople within Anixter (that do much more than just security) to violate this "golden rule", but I'm honestly not sure.
I know this is long, but I'll sum up by simply saying that I do believe Anixter is much more than just box movers. Their supply chain services provide significant value to those that have figured out how to utilize them properly, and I've witnessed firsthand the value that a solid relationiship with them at a corporate and branch level brings to the mix in terms of strategic positioning on new deals as well as new business development. The key is to understand that not every branch is perfect and make sure that if you choose to work with them, that there are certain things (like selling direct) that are just unacceptable.
One thing for sure is that if you make Anixter a significant partner for your business, they will in turn make you a significant part of their's, and this will almost always make your business stronger...at least in my experience.
Selling direct is not only unacceptable, it is inexcusable! Anixter could have a company policy, prohibiting end user sales, as do other "true distributors". For Anixter Corporate to turn a blind eye to this practice should give every integrator the ability to make a simple decision. "Do I want to buy products from my competitor?" Simple enough!
There are others such as Tri-Ed (mentioned) and ScanSource (not mentioned) that have firm policies in place that PROHIBIT end-user sales! Common sense should prevail...
This is verbatim from an email feud I recently had with an imbecile of a distributor:
"Our true job as a vendor is really to just distribute product. We are not supposed to do your job."