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Microsoft Surface Hub: Tech Data Offers Resellers End-to-End Services

Tech Data Corp. (TECD) is offering channel providers end-to-end support for Microsoft Surface Hub deployments, the technology distributor says.

Surface Hub is Microsoft’s massive digital whiteboard for boardrooms, meeting rooms and collaboration areas. Tech Data’s own data center services subsidiary, Signature Technology Group (STG), will offer U.S. resellers site assessment, installation, integrations, configurations and adoption trainings. Providers can now quote and order Surface Hub hardware and service for their domestic clients with Tech Data.

Linda Rendleman, vice president of product marketing, said in a statement the move allows Tech Data partners to more confidently “transform their customers’ collaboration environments.”

“Studies prove that collaboration drives business now more than ever before,” she said. “Our Surface Hub expertise gives our resellers the ability to quickly deploy and implement a state-of-the-art collaboration platform that will deliver greater ROI to their clients.”

Microsoft Surface Hub: Boosting Channel Sales

Microsoft seems eager to boost sales of its Surface Hub digital whiteboards through channel partners. The company has increased support for resellers and distributors in recent months.

Almost two years after Surface Hub launched, Microsoft claims strong interest from business users. The device is being used by more than 2,000 customers in 24 markets, up from 500 users last July, the company said Tuesday. Microsoft also said this week it has added 15 new Surface Hub resellers to keep up with “huge demand” for the device in the U.K.

The Surface Hub, which is available with a 55-inch or 84-inch screen, allows multiple people to work on the device at once in a range of Windows 10 programs, writing directly onto the screen. Integration with services such as Skype for Business means groups can work together remotely and share what they do in services such as PowerPoint and OneNote.

The 55-inch version sells for about $9,000, while the larger screen goes for around $22,000.

In a statement, Microsoft Senior Director of Product Marketing Calin Turcanu said Tech Data’s Surface Hub services will allow resellers to help their clients reduce meeting room costs, increase sales and boost productivity among workplace teams.

Tech Data: Organic & M&A Growth

Surface Hub support is part of Tech Data’s organic growth strategy.  But M&A has also been a big focus area in recent month.

The company purchase Avnet’s enterprise arm — called Avnet Technology Solutions (ATS) — this year for $2.6 billion in a deal that reshaped a major portion of the IT distribution ecosystem.

When the deal was announced last year, Avnet said it planned to double-down on emerging supply chain management opportunities, while Tech Data said it would push deeper into preconfigured data center solutions, training, marketing, and more “value” offerings for partners.

Tech Data gained geographic reach — particularly in Asia — as well as data center product diversity in the deal, according to The 2112 Group, while Avnet was released from its Technology Solutions business, freeing the company to accelerate its Internet of Things (IoT) strategy, among other things.

The deal grew Tech Data from $26 billion in annual sales to $35 billion. In March, Tech Data said it expects the acquisition to result in $100 million in cost savings over two years.

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