Despite the tyranny of distance, niche distributor KVM is interested in increasing its presence in the New Zealand market. Started in 1999 by Managing Director Kurk Brandstater, KVM now deals with hundreds of customers on a monthly basis out of its office in Western Australia.
Brandstater explained that KVM currently has four customers in New Zealand that it deals with regularly, one of which is Auckland distributor SnapperNet. Eager to increase its presence in New Zealand, KVM has made a number of trips across the Tasman.
But KVM is a little different to most distributors. The company decided against a customer loyalty program for the sake of ease of management, and instead offers deals and discounts to resellers who buy through the company frequently. Brandstater also said that he is passionate about the product offered by KVM, which only really supports three main vendors.
“We’re not targeting the high-volume, low-margin products out of China,” Brandstater said. “You can sell KVM and make good money.”
He said that a typical margin on a KVM product can be up to 20% because the company offers such a niche product range.
He added: “All we do is predominately KVM technology and that’s our entire business, so if we can do it on a distribution point and on a distribution margin, a reseller making 15 or 20 points or more in the products can do it very well.”
Brandstater said that KVM is looking for value-added resellers and IT integrators in New Zealand to increase its presence in the area, although it isn’t planning to make any colossal pushes soon.
“We don’t try and step up and jump overnight,” he said. “We tend to go across [the Tasman], find some people, work with them for a while and grow it, and go back a while later and do the same again.”
He also said that the company is happy to grow on a gradual scale. “If I picked up 10 new resellers tomorrow, whilst it would be good, it wouldn’t be that hard to look after them, but the learning curve for them is very steep if they’re not doing the product already. So we’d need to do a couple of trips across there to give them some training and we’re quite happy to do that.”
KVM is a small company of five, but with long-term plans to expand and grow. Brandstater said that even with growth the company will continue to be a niche distributor, and it wants “to remain very niche and very focused on the products” and is “not interested in becoming the distributor for 20 to 30 vendors”.