Locally-made PCs can hold their own against the international brands and are in no way an inferior product.
That's the word from Craig Brunsden, chief marketing officer at Axiz says that product quality is key when allaying the fears of channel partners and end users regarding locally branded hardware.
He adds that the local brands have always been serious competitors for multinational brands and are not inferior in any way.
“Five or six years ago there were up to 15 different local brands but today, thanks to market rationalisation, there are approximately six or seven strong, reputable local brands to choose from.”
As a result of this consolidation the market has reached critical mass, enabling local brand manufacturers to develop world-class infrastructure, he says.
“Having the right infrastructure in place is vital to the success of local brands. It ensures manufacturers not only supply a quality product, but also provide the much-needed after-sales service."
At the heart of after-sale service is the warranty. Brunsden says to compete on an even playing field local brands need to ensure their warranty service is comparable if not the same as that of multinational brands. He cites the Axiz desktop PC as an example with a three year (1095 consecutive days) “carry in” warranty on all standard desktops.
“This is extremely important to both end users and the channel, as well as making it a very competitive product.”
Brunsden says local desktop PC brands hold approximately 30% market share – equating to the sale of almost over 400 000 PCs a year.
“Three years ago there were only about half that number of local PCs sold a year. This demonstrates the solid success of local brands.”
However, he says that corporate South Africa has yet to warm to local brands.
“There is understandable reluctance from this sector. Aside from a reticence to take risks, many corporate companies have a legacy of purchasing multinational brands or are tied into global purchasing agreements.”
In addition, Brunsden says that multinational brands have also been competing very aggressively in this space.