New Viglen to get aggressive against Dell, Gateway

UK direct seller Viglen is flying the Union Jack as it guns for Dell and Gateway 2000. The London-based firm plans to fight back at the US usurpers after floating on the London Stock Exchange and splitting from the Amstrad group.

"Direct sales is the healthiest part of the PC business and there is opportunity to focus on the activities of Dell and Gateway to make sure they don't get too far away," said Bordan Tkachuk, a 10-year veteran of Amstrad who will hold the chief executive position at Viglen Technology plc. "Dell and Gateway have done a great job but they shouldn't be allowed to get away with it. We can benefit from strong growth in the networking solutions part of the market and, as a UK company, get some sympathy from UK corporates."

Tkachuk said that the new direction would allow Viglen to be more adventurous in its marketing spend and challenge the US firms more effectively. "Amstrad perhaps took a conservative view and had to watch the bottom line. Now we have to go into the market and grow the company, focusing on a broad market approach and with marketing not confined to the trade press. Viglen has a good name among knowledgeable buyers but the man in the street doesn't know us. In 18 months I'd like everyone to know the Viglen name."

Tkachuk said he believes Viglen can grow from its current base of 2.8 per cent of the UK market (Romtec data) to at least five per cent of the pie.