MAIT, the apex body representing India's IT hardware, is expanding its bandwidth and is looking to integrate IT channel associations into its fold to form an All India IT Channel Forum. Currently seven of key IT associations are members of this forum and MAIT wants other IT associations to be part of this.
MAIT On Wednesday had conducted its second Channel forum in the city, in which associations like COMPASS, CITTA and PCAIT attended the meet. During this meet, MAIT had to elect the Chairperson for this forum, but due to thin participation of the associations the decision was postponed to next week, said a MAIT person.
Speaking on the IT channel association integration, Amar Babu, president of MAIT said, "We are in the process of integrating IT channel into MAIT ecosystems, we have made few changes into our team. Moreover, we are looking at channel representation into the decision making process, we will be having a dedicated chairperson, among our channel associations. The role of the chairperson to raise the voice for channel section."
To grow this forum, Babu has been actively meeting with the IT associations, recently he was the Chief Guest of Confed-ITA annual meet in Goa. In the month of March, MAIT had also invited IT associations from South, West and North to understand channel related issues. During these meets, MAIT found that the impact of e-sales was hampering the growth of the channel due to the unhealthy pricing.
"As our channel interaction is very new, therefore we are not yet ready to give our official viewpoint on the online sales. We will evolve a clear view on that. We want to create forum and support channel partners. However, in my personal view, online is a new route to market, IT channel had seen similar challenges few years earlier at the time of large format stores. Now with e-sales, there are clearly challenges ahead of the IT channel. But as an industry association, we want to have healthy competition, so that all different route to markets get their space, and do not to drive negative impact on each other."
Babu emphasized that there were enough of opportunities in the market. "In my estimate online is just 10 percent of the over all market, and there is ample scope for IT channel. The new forum will address the channel association and we are seeking healthy engagements with the channel associations."
In addition to IT channel, MAIT is also looking to rope in online marketplaces into its umbrella.