updated 05:40 pm EDT, Mon July 24, 2006
Apple UK Premium Resellers
Apple is preparing to appoint its first Premium-level partners in the UK in September of 2006, supplementing earlier reports that the company is planning to expand its coverage of Apple-only outlets across cities where the company is not very well covered. Apple will offer marketing assistance and training to participants of its Apple Premium Resellers Program as incentives to join and move stores into higher-profile areas. How many partners are to be awarded Premium-level status remains unclear, but CRN believes that Apple will only bestow the privilege upon partners that are willing to operate retail outlets in high-profile locations.
Apple is thought to have announced the Apple Premium Reseller Program to a select number of its value-added resellers (VARs) in London at the Apple Regent Street Store last month.
"I think September will be about the right time for the appointment of the first Premium partners," said Garett Doyle, managing director of Apple reseller Rapid Solutions. "Resellers that are willing to open stores in high-profile locations, or that already have them, will be awarded the Premium status."
Doyle believes that the program will replace Apple Centers, a term used to describe partners that don't have high-profile retail outlets but do have a solid Apple resale focus, according to the report.
Apple is requiring resellers to submit geographic details of their retail locations for consideration of the Premium Reseller Program, according to Keith Coleman, managing director of Western, an Apple VAR.
"We are going through the process of filling in the forms to become an Apple Premium reseller, something that is due to launch in September," Coleman said.
"I've been encouraged [by Apple] not to open locations in certain parts of the country. If you want to become a Premium reseller, then it's probable you will be made one only if you have a high-profile sales location," Coleman added.