Ricoh SA has concluded an exclusive distribution agreement for two printer ranges to be sold through discount retailer Game, a subsidiary of JSE-listed Massmart Holdings, Africa’s third-largest distributor of consumer goods.

The two ranges of printers to be sold through Game stores countrywide are the SP100 laser monochrome printer range, which offers value laser printing for home users and small offices, and the value GelJet colour printers that offer the next level in printing technology for low volume users in homes and offices.

“The agreement means these two ranges will be available at all Game stores countrywide and also in neighbouring countries including Namibia, Botswana, Zambia, Mozambique, Lesotho and Swaziland,” says Jacques van Wyk, executive GM of indirect operations at Ricoh SA.

“The agreement gives consumers direct access to the Ricoh products, with a three-year carry-in warranty, which is among the best in the industry. It also cements our multi-pronged approach to the consumer market that includes our agreement with Mustek’s distribution business, Rectron.”

Van Wyk says that Ricoh SA will not offer the distribution agreement to other retailers but will make consumables available through Game and other retail chains to give consumers easy access to them.

Ricoh will support the marketing of its printers through Game stores by advertising in the retailer’s broadsheet publications and has already confirmed such a programme to March, 2014.

“This deal complements our agreement with Rectron because they push the product through their dealers while we expect availability through Game stores will create pull factor through consumer mindshare,” says van Wyk.

“The products are ideally suited to the consumers and we expect the colour gel solution to perform particularly well in small, home offices and homes generally.

“It is capable in that it can print water resistant, UV resistant colour on the right media and it is extremely energy efficient. It uses the equivalent power of only one 60W light bulb while competitor products consumer significantly more – upwards of seven times that amount.”

Warranties will be honoured at Game stores, Ricoh approved business partners and Ricoh SA itself.