HP has revealed it is in the process of recruiting up to 20 partners to resell its Quick Page packaged managed print service in the UK.
The vendor has completed a pilot for the service, an all-in-one offer that includes product, page mix and colour which resellers can sell to customers with up to ten devices on-site.
Alan Hatfield, IPG channel development manager at HP, said there would be some overlap with its 28 existing managed service print partners but the vendor was also looking for others that "want to dip their toe into the market and are looking for new revenue streams and additional profitability".
The message was that when they sold a printer, they should sell the pages too. HP is undergoing a huge shakeup in its managed print services approach, handing over 80% of its direct accounts in the UK to channel partners and reducing the number of customers it supplies direct from 2,000 to less than 300.
Hatfield said the move represented "a huge opportunity" for partners, but he stressed it was important for get management commitment within partner organisations to back it up.
"You have to get management commitment, otherwise it doesn't happen. Even though it is simple - product, page mix and colour - it never ceases to amaze me how difficult it seems to be for the IT channel," he commented.
One of the challenges was getting IT resellers "to focus on one area out of many" because they were also in the business of selling servers, PCs, products and services for the data centre and the desktop across multiple vendors.
As a result, when it came to print, there had "never been any strategy or design", Hatfield observed. "We've got to try and get print towards the top of the agenda."
It was important to ensure the channel was able to sell managed print services, he added. "We want our channel to secure our supplies, service and hardware business - to protect our installed base against marauding copier vendors."