Phil Madders, Managing Director of Print Audit Europe, speaks to PITRabout the firm’s growth in 2014, its plans to expand further in 2015 and how it is creating more value-added opportunities for partners.
Print Audit Europe currently has in excess of 120 UK resellers signed up to its newly launched Premier programme. Last year, the firm grew its network by some 40% and, according to Managing Director Phil Madders, is actively targeting further expansion in 2015. “We’re aiming to boost the number of members by around 30% next year and we will achieve that by introducing new products and services,” he said. The firm’s suite of products is designed to support resellers in the delivery of managed print services that enable customers to reduce the cost and environmental impact of printing and copying.
The offering is fully scalable, from Print Audit Facilities Manager, which remotely collects meter readings, automates supplies fulfilment and provides service information across the fleet; to the top of the range Print Audit 6, which enables users to account for every document produced (down to individual user level), set limits by volume or to restrict colour printing and, via an embedded option, track all copy, scan and fax jobs for the purposes of accurate internal recharging by department.
Premier subscription plan
The entire suite is available on a softwareas-a-service (SaaS) model, including Print Audit Premier, a new subscription plan that provides partners with access to all of Print Audit’s products for a low monthly fee.
Each member has a monthly allocation of licences which can be used for any product, including Print Audit Assessor, Facilities Manager, Print Audit 6, Print Audit Secure or Print Audit Embedded.
“This new model has changed our business completely,” said Madders. “The Premier pricing model is totally flexible. We’ve designed it to support dealers for whom MPS is a new area, as well as those who require the ability to seamlessly adjust the number of licences they deploy as customer requirements change.”
The firm sells exclusively to the channel and, in addition to its network of dealers, has formed strategic alliances with a number of leading manufacturers, including Ricoh, Toshiba and Olivetti, so that they can offer it to their dealers. Madders said: “We offer the channel an easy way to enter the MPS arena, as well as generate additional revenue and secure ongoing income from their existing and potential customer base. Eighty per cent of MPS and equipment deals are won using user and device assessment tools and the Premier programme allows resellers to join at the level they want. Prices start at around £0.50 per licence and reduce as partners increase the number of licenses used. They upgrade as and when they need to.”
He added: “The licence model is also flexible. In some products a licence is per seat, in others it’s per device. For the dealer, the uniqueness of the way we operate means that it’s not a headache for them. What they use simply comes out of their subscription, and if a single customer reduces or increases the number of users or the installed machine base, it’s simple to deactivate the license and use it somewhere else.
“In essence, the product is unimportant to the end-user; they get automatic upgrades as and when they’re available so they always have access to the latest technology. What’s important is the service that the dealer is providing and the value they’re bringing to a client’s business. The ability to assure a client that they’re not going to be faced with out of date technology in a few months is a strong sales proposition. Plus, it locks the customer in; they don’t own the software, the dealer does, which makes it more difficult for them to leave.”
New for 2015
Print Audit Europe believes that engaging with partners is key. In addition to faceto-face meetings, email communications and social media interaction, the company is soon to introduce user forums where partners can share ideas and best practice. It will also be launching a number of new products in January 2015, including an iPad-based mapping software solution for carrying out print audits and a new cloud-based document management solution.
Madders said: “The biggest challenge facing the channel, now that it has moved away from the traditional transaction sales model, is how to be creative with software. Through our suite of easy-to-use, easy-to install products, we can help them to add value to customers’ businesses and ensure recurring revenues. We’re committed to supporting partners in moving their business forward, developing new recurring revenue streams and locked-in profitability. This increases the value of their business tremendously – if you want an example of that, think about the Netflix model and consider how Blockbuster has fared.”