Avnet Hall-Mark Reduces Demonstrations Cost with IT DemoCentral

12/11/2003 - Avnet Hall-Mark, a value-added distributor of enterprise servers, storage, software and services introduced IT DemoCentral, providing resellers with self-service access to Avnet Hall-Mark's extensive library of enterprise solutions through a secure Web portal. The service dramatically reduces the cost of demonstrations and simplifies logistics, making it possible for resellers to conduct a greater number of demonstrations to increase sales potential and bolster competitive advantage.

IT DemoCentral utilizes standard versions of leading enterprise hardware and software to enable resellers to effectively differentiate their solutions to customers. A reservations-based scheduling system ensures that all necessary IT components are available when a demonstration is requested and enables users to fully control the specific hardware and software components. The portal architecture is compatible with optional Web-based collaboration utilities, including HP Learning Center, Lotus Sametime, Oracle Collaboration Suite and WebEx, making it possible for customers or reseller employees to join in the demonstrations in real time.

"The cost of equipment and personnel make in-house demo capabilities difficult to maintain for most resellers," said Marc Sarazin, VP, sales and marketing, AdvizeX Technologies, a value-added reseller of HP and Oracle solutions. "Plus, asking a customer to travel to a remote demonstration creates additional obstacles. Avnet Hall-Mark has removed those hidden costs so we can focus on solutions and how they will improve our customers' business."

In addition to shortening sales cycles, IT DemoCentral can also greatly enhance training and customer service for resellers by providing quick access to live product environments. Resellers can schedule the service to research customer inquiries and also to refresh the skills of their employees.

Ray Fischer, senior vice president, Avnet Hall-Mark Enterprise Services, said of the new service, "IT DemoCentral expands the ability of our resellers to effectively communicate with their customers. Instead of just telling them what they are going to do for them, they can now show them why their solution is superior -- in a convenient and cost-effective way." Fischer continued, "Resellers can demonstrate over 30 of the leading technologies that define the enterprise -- both servers and storage -- from all of our supplier partners: EMC, HP, IBM, Microsoft, Network Appliance, Oracle, StorageTek and VERITAS."

"The ability of a reseller to effectively demonstrate a proposed solution can be critical to winning the sale," said Ken Muse, VP, NAS Technology Channels, Oracle Corp. "IT DemoCentral makes it possible for resellers to make demonstrations a standard part of every sale."

About Avnet Hall-Mark
Headquartered in Tempe, Ariz., Avnet Hall-Mark is an industry-leading, value-added distributor of enterprise servers, storage, software and services, marketing exclusively to the reseller channel. Through operations in the United States, Mexico and Canada, Avnet Hall-Mark provides solutions from industry-leading manufacturers including BMC Software, EMC, HP, IBM, Microsoft, Network Appliance, Oracle, StorageTek and VERITAS -- driving growth for partners and manufacturers.

Avnet Hall-Mark is a division of the Avnet Technology Solutions operating group of Avnet Inc. (NYSE:AVT), one of the world's largest technology marketing, distribution and services companies. Avnet's sales for fiscal 2003 (year ended June 27, 2003) were $9.05 billion. For more information about Avnet Hall-Mark, visit: www.hallmark.avnet.com.

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