WITH the introduction of a new tape storage player, Exabyte is ready to take on the New Zealand small to medium enterprise (SME) market — with a little help from the channel.
Exabyte has spent the last three years reinventing itself with VXA packet-loading products for the low-end market.
Chris Wening, Asia-Pacific sales director, says his company has been spending its marketing money in Australia to build up that market, until now.
“I think it’s time for New Zealand to get to know Exabyte and believe me, we’ll treat this market the way it expects to be treated,” he says.
Wening says Exabyte is working to become a more sophisticated channel partner and has already launched a portal that gives resellers access to marketing material and product information.
While the company enjoys good sales on individual tape drives within the OEM community, Wening says autoloaders are an excellent channel product and perfectly suited to the SME space.
“Customers buy tape drives because they know [the technology] but VXA is actually better suited to this market. I’m telling resellers to do themselves and their customers a favour by selling the right product and that is proving the hardest message to get through.”
He admits tape drive technology is the spare tyre of the computer industry.
“No one checks it until they desperately need it. There’s nothing sexy about what Exabyte does because we’re the prevention guys.”
Richard Giddey, Exabyte country manager Australia New Zealand, says autoloaders take out the biggest cause of data loss — human error.
“The SME space is getting knocked around by data loss and these are the businesses that can least afford it. VXA plays pretty strong in the market and, because it isn’t as commoditised as LTO [linear tape open], still has some great margins,” he says.
Giddey has already started an incentive programme that rewards resellers with cash and will soon launch a partner programme.
Exabyte recently signed T-Data as its second New Zealand distributor, alongside Datastor.