Going, going, but not yet gone

Posted on Dec 4 2015 - 12:52pm by John Peters
RATING

Westcoast is offering resellers 50% off selected Lexmark printer/toner bundles, and is donating £5 to Meningitis Now for every one sold.

We’ve selected five SKUs and pledged to donate £5 for every device we ship throughout Q4

We’ve selected five SKUs and pledged to donate £5 for every device we ship throughout Q4

UK distributor Westcoast, a strategic Lexmark partner, has launched a series of ‘buy better, buy bundles’ that give resellers the opportunity to buy selected Lexmark printers and MFPs bundled with high capacity toners for half price.

For every colour or mono printer/MFP bundle sold, Westcoast is donating £5 to Meningitis Now. By the end of the year, it hopes to have raised £5,000 for the UK’s largest meningitis charity to support the work it does in offering support, funding research and raising awareness of the disease.

At the time of writing, Westcoast had already donated £1,135 for sales in October, with a further donation of £810 on its way to the charity. Donations are made on the reseller’s behalf.

Westcoast’s Lexmark Product Manager Mike Newson said: “We’ve selected five SKUs and pledged to donate £5 for every device we ship throughout Q4. In addition to supporting a really worthwhile charity, these bundle offers provide our dealers with a unique opportunity to proactively win new business. We’re giving them the ability to compete in a market where purchasers are searching online for the cheapest prices.”

Martin Fairman, Lexmark Channel Sales Director, UK & Ireland, said: “Meningitis Now provides much needed support for families and children affected by meningitis. We are proud to support Westcoast in raising funds for this worthy charity.”

In addition to its fund-raising initiatives for Meningitis Now, Westcoast supports Macmillan Cancer Research, other Cancer Trusts, local charities and children’s football teams.

A competitive edge

Westcoast is shipping the Lexmark devices with a full set of high yield toners, and how the reseller chooses to pass the savings on to their customer base is up to them. “This is a trade-only deal and, as such, it places the channel in a unique position where they can choose how they sell on to their customers,” said Newson.

“Discounting the hardware is a great deal in its own right, but by bundling the hardware with the consumables and offering both at half price, we’re providing channel partners with a real competitive edge. Resellers could resell the toners at full price, for example, and use the lower headline cost of the printer as an opportunity to encourage customers to refresh their printer fleets.”

He added: “Vendors who currently only sell hardware will be able to secure additional revenue from toner sales and make a decent margin, and for EOS-only vendors, we’re providing the opportunity to seed new business by selling printers to their customer base.”

Another compelling sales proposition is Lexmark’s end-user reward programme. Each new printer purchase earns the purchaser two points and each cartridge returned to the OEM for recycling is worth one point (a full set of CMYK earns four points). In addition, programme members get free imaging units for life.

“The bundles we’re offering, comprising a printer, a starter set of toners and a full set of high yield cartridges, is worth ten points in the rewards programme – and ten points equates to one free toner for the end user,” explained Newson.

One-stop-shop

As a Lexmark partner, Westcoast is in a strong position to support its customer base. The firm is unique in the distribution channel in that it offers Lexmark hardware, supplies and spare parts, and can ship all direct to the end customer in packaging that features the reseller’s branding so that it looks as though it’s come from them direct. It also offers timed delivery options.

“As a business we have a narrow and deep philosophy, which allows us to specialise in a vendor’s full range of products and services. The fact that we offer all three categories is unmatched in the disti channel,” said Newson. “Because we work with fewer vendors, we have knowledgeable sales specialists across all areas of the business, ensuring our channel partners get the expertise they need to offer their customers the most appropriate products and services. This makes Westcoast a true one-stop-shop.”

For the channel, the purchasing process is seamless. All products can be purchased online and Westcoast boasts 99.9% pick rate accuracy.

Another value-added service Westcoast provides is consignment warehousing. It holds all inventory for resellers, which they can draw down as required. “This works especially well for smaller operations who don’t have the space to carry large amounts of stock in their own premises,” said Newson.

www.westcoast.co.uk