D&H Canada continues growth in fiscal 2011

D&H Canada chief Greg Tobin

Distributor D&H Canada has closed out its fiscal 2011, announcing that it saw growth of 37 per cent on the year.

Desktops and notebooks were among the areas that exceeded that 37 per cent growth clip, as well as peripherals, networking and VOIP, desktop UPS, document processing and digital imaging. D&H Canada general manager Greg Tobin said the broad selection of technologies beating overall growth numbers show resellers are being more strategic with the distributor.

“When our resellers are buying products from us, it’s not just one thing,” Tobin said. “They’re buying total solutions, and that tends to lead to more comprehensive purchases.”

So that’s the good news. But not everything is growing, and certainly not at the same rate. Tobin reported that the distributor’s components business isn’t as strong as it once was, largely because of the declining presence of the white box in the system market. “Fewer people are turning the screws and building their own systems,” he said.

The GPS device category was also down compared to a year ago, and Tobin said he expects it to continue to lag in fiscal 2012.

Growth also continues among one of Tobin’s other favourite metrics – customer acquisition. Although it’s no longer growing the number of resellers with which it works at the kind of rate it was in its first two years of operation, Tobin reports that the distributor is still, on average, signing up about 150 new VARs per quarter these days, a number he expects to continue into the future.

To help keep that number up, D&H remains active in several key areas, including with a sponsorship of last weekend’s SMB Nation event in Toronto, which it is largely using to get in front of new faces.

On the loyalty front, the distributor’s incentives program, launched into Canada earlier this year, is “really driving loyalty” among VARs who are already D&H customers.

Looking out on the just-started current fiscal year, Tobin said he expects D&H Canada to see growth, but the distributor has “dialed back our plan a bit” from the rapid growth its seen in recent years. Still, Tobin stressed that there will still be growth out there. Among the bright spots for the coming year – everyone’s favourite technology growth darling, the tablet computer. D&H also expects to see continued growth on its VOIP business.

“In the SMB market, there’s still all sorts of new business and opportunities happening,” Tobin said. “There’s enough SMB business out there to keep D&H excited and vendor partners engaged.”