Reseller News

Radiola ceases trade after nearly a century

Radiola Corporation has stopped trading as of this month, after vendor partner Samsung reclaimed distribution of its own consumer electronics products.

Radiola began local operation in 1913 and had been a Samsung distributor since 1993. It also previously represented audiovisual brands Kenwood and Jensen locally.

“As of the 28th of February 2010, Radiola Corporation Limited has ceased to trade,” the company’s website says. “Please be aware that accounts will still be processed until the 30th of April.”

The company operated from the same North Shore, Auckland premises as Samsung. It referred Reseller News to Samsung for comment and its website also has a link to Samsung’s site.

When asked how many of the approximately 40 Radiola staff had been taken on by Samsung, the head of marketing at Samsung, Rachael Cotton-Bronte, said the company was still finalising its new team and would announce key appointments this month.

Samsung is set to expand its local staff numbers from 30 to more than 50, including a head of IT role, three IT business development managers and product managers.

Samsung has already taken over dealer relationships from Radiola, along with the processing of new accounts.

Radiola began operating in the region at the turn of last century as AWA, a joint venture to service the Australasian market, in which one company was Germany’s Telefunken. It was the subject of a local management buyout in the 1980s. As well as being a distributor of consumer electronics products, it provided installation of communications and defence systems locally.

Reseller News reported in January that Samsung would take over local consumer products distribution, which includes televisions, digital imaging, audiovisual products and whitegoods. Ingram Micro continues to distribute its IT products.

There is an ongoing process of communication with partners and customers to ensure questions about the new distribution arrangement are addressed, says Cotton-Bronte.