Imaging Market Evolution – The HP and Samsung Channel Effect

HP Inc. announced that it plans on becoming the dominant player in the A3 copier space

This week HP made it clear the copier industry has lacked the technology to improve efficient service, provide affordable color and keep up with security requirements. And, all while announcing an A3 product line with the intent to disrupt the copier market.

So, it’s clear – HP is gunning for the copier market – again. Will Samsung help HP get there this time? And how will this play out in the channel?

Our View

We all know that Samsung is primarily a ‘low price’ alternative to HP and others. The company offers an A3-based product line and a few office-based applications, however, the copier market is not a primary strength. Photizo believes by taking out the price leader, HP has relieved some price pressure in the market and will leverage the Samsung laser engine technology. The acquisition does little to move the needle in the traditional copier market.

HP will have an uphill battle to displace the established A3 vendor relationships the channel relies on with vendors such as Xerox, Ricoh, Canon and others (See Figure 1).

Figure 1 - HP Acquires Samsung Printing Solutions Business
Figure 1 – HP Acquires Samsung Printing Solutions Business       Source: Photizo Group

With an established brand and HP’s revamped Partner First channel program Photizo will be watching to see if HP’s approach will be successful this go around. PageWide will help to position HP to possibly disrupt the market with its low-cost performance model.

Many of the dealers we spoke to remind us how dependent they are on the reliability, quality and the comfort they have when selling laser-based solutions into the SMB and Enterprise. How will business evolve with the new “maintenance free” A3 products given the channel’s dependence on service revenue?

Can HP disrupt the channel with the help of Samsung? This will be easier said than done and we look forward to keeping a close watch.

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