We are not looking at Canon and HP as our competitors

Indian consumers are more aware of brands such as Canon and HP in the
printing business. Where does Brother International fit?
We have been rearing to enter this market. HP and Canon are up there and we
are a challenger. We are increasing our brand awareness with the help of
advertising and are not looking at Canon and HP as our competitors. Soon, we
will come out with a television commercial and other advertising initiatives to
take this process further. We are focusing on our own category. We would like to
be the number one player in our own category.

How do you look after your partners?
Today, channel partners are smarter, more exposed and knowledgeable. When we
approach them, we have to explain the commercial sense. Second, we provide
better margins and comfort level in handling products. Third is the after sales
support we offer. We also sell our consumables to those who sell our hardware so
that they get good revenue. Our main aim is to engage the customer again and
again. The approach has always been to offer constant and proper support.

Toshikazu Koike, president
& representative director, Brother International

What plans does Brother International have for its channel partners in
We have a short-term engagement with channel partners and follow up on a
q-o-q basis. Then we have the longer-term engagement with our partners, where we
create a pool of loyal channel partners with whom we engage for a longer period.
Our partners are less than HP, but have been by our side for the last fifteen
years. We are not focused on quantity but on quality.

How do you tackle the logistics and infrastructure challenges that our
country presents?
If you compare India to other countries, logistics is a big challenge. We
have four national distributors who take care of the logistics. It does not make
sense for us to put logistics facility in fifty locations. In terms of
documentations such as road permits, these are issues common for everyone. We
hope these things would change in the next few years.

Prasad Ramasubramanian/CyberMedia News

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