Acer Sets Up Backend Rebate Plan for VARs

The vendor has introduced a new incentive based VAR partner program that it says is designed specifically to support a wide array of third-party relationships with independent hardware vendors and system integrators. Rebates range from 2 to 4 percent.

The battle for channel mind share has been renewed.

In an effort to compete more effectively with top rivals Dell and Hewlett-Packard, Acer America, the third-largest vendor in the PC market, is offering back-end rebates to its authorized VARs.

The vendor has introduced a new incentive based VAR partner program that it says is designed specifically to support a wide array of third-party relationships with independent hardware vendors and system integrators.

Beginning this month, VARs authorized by Acer that have signed up for its new promotion, dubbed the Summer Sales Extravaganza, will receive 3 percent backend rebates on TravelMate and Extensa notebook PCs, 4 percent on selected desktop PCs, and 2 percent on all B Series and 26-inch X Series LCDs

“Alliances play a critical part in Acer America’s overall business strategy for delivering PC products across a broad spectrum of user segments, including the SMB market which has been Acer’s historical strength,” said Richard Black, director of channel marketing for Acer America, in a prepared statement. Black added that unlike its rivals, Acer moves all its sales to business customers through the channel "giving VARs the assurance that we will never take their deal direct."

The move marks a change in course of sorts for Acer, which eliminated back-end rebates in the U.S. market four years ago and focused more on traditional distribution.

There is no immediate indication that Acer's move will cause its rivals to follow suit, although it does show price cuts could emerge as a point of differentiation in the channel, which is becoming increasingly price-sensitive in the current economic climate.

Acer logged more than $14 billion in  worldwide sales last year. The company absorbed vendors Gateway and Packard Bell.

To become eligible for the back-end rebates, VARs have to sign up for the promotion at the company's Web site: http://connect.acer-euro.com.

TAGS: SMB,Dell,marketing,spectrum,desktop



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