In his first interview since returning to Australia, Ingram's new CEO speaks exclusively to ARN about the forthcoming year
Ingram Micro has been through a fairly complicated period in its history over the past few years, how different is the Australian operation that has emerged from the one in place when you left? What are its strengths?
Our business has developed since I was last here. Our back-office systems are all new, we've got a great new e-commerce website, and we've got a new state-of-the-art Advanced Logistics Centre -- so there's been a lot of investment into the infrastructure of the business. A lot of work has been done to ensure we're in a good position to be able to serve our customers' needs efficiently and I think this gives us a very strong platform to provide additional value added services and respond quickly to what our customers need.
The traditional picture of Ingram as a box-pusher has changed radically as it moves into services, mobility, logistics etc., where do you see the key areas of growth for Ingram in 2013?
Mobility is obviously a key driver for growth across the industry -- and we're seeing that in areas such as tablets, smart-phones, and all the software and accessories that support mobile computing. That growth will continue in 2013 and there will be some exciting innovations in that market too. With the Brightpoint team joining us we gain additional skills through the talent of the organisation and we open up new markets to our vendors whilst also offering a wider portfolio of mobile products to our customers.
The services market is also a growing segment. We're continuing to see good growth in some of the enterprise technologies -- such as networking, security, virtualisation and data-centre technology - that supports service providers. Additionally we're seeing more interest in cloud solutions as our partners start to work with us to include cloud services as part of their offerings.
Convergence of technologies is opening up new opportunities as well. For instance mobile and smart screen technologies are creating opportunities in digital signage and related areas. We've built a really strong specialised division to develop this segment which has a lot of industry experience and knowledge. They have focused on educating the market, and working with resellers to demonstrate how these various technologies can be leveraged in a number of industry solutions -- in retail, education, government and other industries.
Also our Logistics services is an established and successful segment of the IM business model in many of the countries we operate in. Locally we have had some strong success in this area over the past 10 years, but were running out of room in our old distribution centre. Now that we have our new Advanced Logistics Centre at Eastern Creek we are able to focus on new opportunities in this space. We see Logistics Services as a natural extension of our other services -- using existing capabilities built up locally and in from overseas.
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