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Up channel associations are thinking big

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DQW Bureau
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IT associations in the B and C class cities across the western part of the country are making bigger investments in their infrastructure compared to the metros.

Vidharbha Computer and Media Dealers Welfare Association (VCMDWA) is making an investment of almost Rs 32 lakh in purchasing office premises combined with a large conference room.

South Gujarat Information Technologist Association (SITA) has bigger plans as it has already made plans to start a trade center. This would be done in consultation with Surat State Chamber of Commerce. This trade center would be a huge complex where MNCs could set up their office, hold its events and exhibitions and also have IT malls and parks. The space, which is 1.5 lakh square meters, has been identified but all these plans are still in the conceptual stage.

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Computer & Media Dealers Association (CMDA) of Pune has also purchased an office six months back by investing Rs 9 lakh. CMDA members also have plans to purchase an open piece of land in the future to construct CMDA Towers. This again would be done in association with the Maratha Chamber of Commerce.

"By investing this huge amount VCMDWA is saving a lot of money. We are saving an amount of almost Rs 3 to 4 lakh in a year. Earlier, we were spending money in conducting our meetings at hotels. With this office set up it could be rented out to other industry associations based in the city. There are 110 other associations based in the city," pointed out Ashok Bagaria, member of VCMDWA and proprietor of Nagpur based Cable House.

Many of these associations are of the opinion that by making such investments in infrastructure it also brings about a professional environment. "CMDA has decided to conduct the events of the association in a professional manner. The Pune Expo which is held every year will be taken up and conducted in a better manner," said John Thomas, President,

CMDA.

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With all these associations getting active, IT bodies based in the metros are really slow and laid back, stated channel sources.

"It is essential for associations like TAIT to upgrade themselves and leave their false egos behind. Members must understand that it is their responsibility to contribute towards the channel community," said Brijesh Khanna, past President of SITA and proprietor of Surat-based Vesta

Infotech.

However metro-based associations like Mumbai's Traders Association of Information Technology (TAIT) and Ahmedabad Computer Manufacturers Association (ACMA) had a different story to tell. "TAIT is working on some new initiatives. We are in the process of purchasing our own premises. There is enough of funds as there are 248 members presently. In fact, TAIT is also planning an event next year for the channel community. A similar event was held three years back and this was mainly because of lack of interest among the channel members," said Pravin Dhoka, Secretary of TAIT and proprietor of Ortek Computers.

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In fact, many of the TAIT member are of the opinion that there was no need of huge investments in metros like

Mumbai.

Events are not important as vendors already conduct roadshows, exhibitions and product displays for channel partners.

"Such huge investment does not make sense. ACMA is looking at reaching the seven digit figure. Even making investments for a 1,000 sq ft proves expensive in the long run with high maintenance costs," said Sanjay Tayal, General Secretary of ACMA and proprietor of Emerald

Infocom.

Nancy Sudheer

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