IT partners in Hubli and Dharwad, one of the fasted growing IT markets in North Karnataka, voiced concerns against the challenges faced by the channel community in the region. The partners said that E Commerce and VAT were severely impacting businesses of IT retailers and the government should pay attention towards the problems of the Channel community.
The DQ Week in association with Canon, Kaspersky and TechBzar.com had organized the Tech Caravan event in Hubli on 19th December, 2014. Talking about the challenges faced by the IT retailers, Mr. Malatesh Kulkarni, president of the Dharwar District Association for Information Technology- Hubli (DDAIT), said that E Commerce had largely impacted businesses of small retailers. He clarified that channel partners were not against the emerging marketplace, however, they were against the predatory pricing done by OLS portals.
“We are not against E Commerce. We demand a level playing field for every market place. OLS portals selling goods below the landed cost are not only hampering our profit margins also it is against the competition act”, Mr. Kulkarni said.
Mr. Mitesh Jain, vice president of DDAIT, said that apart from E Commerce, VAT is another major challenge faced by the channel in the region. “Karnataka government has fixed VAT at 5.5 per cent for IT products, whereas neighboring states have 4 per cent – 5 per cent, which makes the partners, especially in the borders of Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra to lose business”, he said.
Mr. Jain said that with the implementation of General Sales Tax (GST), such disparities in taxation would be eliminated and benefited the industry at large.
Hubli is the second biggest market in Karnataka after Bengaluru. Many IT hardware manufacturing and software development sectors in North Karnataka are located in Hubli-Dharwad. Hubli-Dharwad and the surrounding region have over 50 engineering colleges that produce a significant number of options. However, lack of infrastructure growth and sluggish industrial development is creating hurdles in the growth of IT in the region.
Canon one of the leading brand in printers and scanner segment and associate sponsor of the event, presented its plethora of offerings. Mr. Abhishekh Kumar, Territory Manager-Channel Sales, Canon, gave information about the latest products of the company. Explaining the vision of Canon, Mr. Kumar said that Canon printers are at the forefront in terms of latest technology and also it is cost effective. Canon also displayed two WI-fi printers: LBP6030B/W and LBP6230DN in the event. Mr. Kumar said that by positioning these two products, partners could earn healthy profit margins.
Security partner Kaspersky introduced their team in the South to the partners and appealed partners to approach Kaspersky representatives for any assistance.
The DQ Week also informed partners about its new initiative-TechBzar. DQ Week has recently launched a B2B portal-TechBzar.com to assist channel partners to increase their visibility on online platform. The DQ Week appealed partners to register themselves on TechBzar absolutely free of cost and maximize their business.
There was good response from partners in the event. Around 25 partners participated in the event. There were few queries which were promptly addressed by the representatives of Canon and Kaspersky during networking over dinner.