SDM interviewed some of these distributors about their involvement with physical security and their strategies in the market.
Tech Data Taps VAR Base
The company has six physical warehouse locations nationwide, two of which are what Tech Data vice president of marketing John O’Shea calls “configuration facilities.” At those two locations, if a customer requests, Tech Data personnel will configure products prior to shipping them to the customer. For example, O’Shea says, “If someone orders a server and needs a memory upgrade or processor, we can make the hardware adjustment and apply the software image to the hardware so when the equipment shows up, it’s pre-configured based on what the customer requires. They plug it in and it’s ready to go.”
Anixter Emphasizes Global Strengths
Anixter has thousands of security integrator customers who generate the majority of the company’s security sales, but the company also has been adding a lot of IT specialists, Leatherwood says.
Anixter also offers training, along with bundled offerings known as READY! Deployment services. For example, the READY! Camera offering includes items such as cameras, housings, mounts and lenses as a single solution to speed installation and reduce waste.
As for competitive differentiation, Leatherwood touts Anixter’s expertise and independence, as well as the global nature of the company. The distributor offers local support in 52 countries.
Graybarâ€™s Broad Product Line
Much of Graybar’s security equipment is sold to companies that also install other Graybar product lines. “Our initial strategy had been to engage with our existing customers,” Taylor says. “However, as we became more involved in the industry, we expanded into working with security integrators and dealers.”
ScanSource Offers Network Assessment
ScanSource entered the security business in 2004 and focuses primarily on video surveillance and IP-based access control. “Our business model supports the evolution to IP but that’s not all we sell,” Constantine comments. “Sixty-four percent of our business is IP; the rest is analog.”
“We see a large need for additional services such as configuration and testing.”â€”Melissa Taylor, Graybar