Panasonic taps Synnex, Tech Data

Panasonic has expanded its federal distribution system beyond GTSI, entering agreements with Synnex Information Technologies and Tech Data.

The two distributors have served as a channel for Panasonic’s Toughbook laptop computers in other markets for some time, according to Panasonic. In May, Panasonic extended its Preferred Partner Program into the federal market, in which the company had previously maintained an exclusive relationship with GTSI. GTSI remains an authorized federal Toughbook distributor.

Panasonic’s wider distribution aims to support more resellers, value-added resellers and systems integrators that want to offer Toughbooks, said Michelle Chapin, director of the government channel at Panasonic. The federal partner program also serves that purpose, she added.

GTSI has been Panasonic’s “proven distribution partner for over a decade,” Chapin said, adding that the addition of Synnex and Tech Data will provide federal resellers expanded access to products.

Panasonic’s federal business is fulfilled entirely via channel partners, Chapin said. The company’s stance represents an alternative for resellers “who are increasingly being asked to sell product from companies who, essentially, compete with them through direct sales,” she said.

Synnex, based in Fremont, Calif., had revenue of $5.64 billion in 2005. Tech Data, based in Clearwater, Fla., recorded $20.5 billion in sales for its most recent fiscal year, which ended Jan. 31. Both companies distribute computer systems, software, networking products, peripherals and system components.

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