By Mark Sutton
Hewlett-Packard has finally ended its exclusive distribution agreement with Emitac, opening the channel to ex-Compaq distributors for the UAE.
HP is set to open its UAE channel to competition, with the ending of its exclusive distribution agreement with Emitac. From the first of April, distributors that were channel partners of pre-merger Compaq will be free to operate in the UAE, once they have attained the proper authorisation from HP. In turn, Emitac will now expand its HP distribution operations to include the rest of the Middle East, to capitalise on its twenty-five year relationship with HP.“HP continues to value its longstanding and thriving relationship of 25 years with EMITAC, as they have always pushed the boundaries of the UAE Channel and invested in new technology”, said Joseph Hanania, general manager, HP Middle East. “We at HP are really excited by this new agreement between our companies and look forward to continuing our highly successful partnership across the whole region.”Emitac will maintain the service contracts for HP’s imaging and printing range for another two years, until 2005, and for the server business for another year until 2004.Suhail Issa, CEO of the Emitac group says that the move will allow the company to leverage on some of the investments it has made in services and expertise through its relationship with HP, and to consider new vendors for other territories across the region. The distributor was limited in the scope of its operations, and found that the level of investment in services and so on was impractical when confined to the UAE market, he said, but that today’s move would allow the company to grow properly.“We are pleased with today’s announcement, as this allows us to build on our great business relationship with HP,” Issa said. “We have the know-how, experience and resources to expand our operations to become one of the strongest regional partners for HP. EMITAC has a strong presence in the UAE, and Qatar and we intend to aggressively build our presence in new markets.”