Toshiba dangles double carrot for SME dealers

Toshiba will target Compaq's SME dealers with a double incentive next week when it launches its first ever desktop PC range, called the Equium, and the world's smallest notebook PC called Libretto.Toshiba hopes to be a top three desktop PC vendor by 2003 but needs key PC dealers - most of which sell Compaq PCs and Toshiba notebooks already - to penetrate the market in sufficient quantities.

Toshiba will target Compaq's SME dealers with a double incentive next week when it launches its first ever desktop PC range, called the Equium, and the world's smallest notebook PC called Libretto.

Toshiba hopes to be a top three desktop PC vendor by 2003 but needs key PC dealers - most of which sell Compaq PCs and Toshiba notebooks already - to penetrate the market in sufficient quantities. It will also rely on its consumer electronic goods brand image to win potential floating buyers in the low end of the market.

Details and specifications of the machines are embargoed until Monday next week but Toshiba believes the confusion over Compaq's direct sell plans could create a few opportunities for the company to win some big dealers over.

Jed Dandy, marketing manager at leading corporate Compaq dealer Fraser Associates said that although Compaq's plans did not in any way affect Fraser Associates, the issue had been "muddied by rumours" in recent weeks, and a number of dealers were "confused" by Compaq's plans.

It is this confusion that Toshiba is hoping to take advantage of and Dandy added that "most leading corporate dealers carried Toshiba notebooks anyway and would see the desktops as a natural extension."

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