Archive for April, 2010

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On Demand Show 2010

April 25, 2010

I just got back home from Philly. I spent two days at the On Demand \ AIIM 2010 show. It was a good show, but not a great one. It was reasonable well attended and there were definitely a couple of things I really wanted to see. But I was surprised at how few Copier companies were represented.

On Demand Sponsors

The 3 big Copier manufacturer booths were Konica Minolta, Canon, & Xerox. They were in my opinion the big winners at On Demand.

The Big losers were those who didn’t show up (for what ever reason), No Sharp, No Toshiba, and Ricoh had an anemic appearance with IBM at their Info Print booth. Come on guys are you In or Out? Pick one.

That’s my $0.02
Vince McHugh
vince.mchugh@necs.biz
WWW.NECS.BIZ

PS: I couldn’t seem to find the IKON or Danka booths? Strange? I also didn’t see any Ricoh or Ikon employees….Where were you guys? At the Ricoh Non-Demand show in NJ?

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Is Ikon purposely letting their Canon MFDs run poorly?

April 2, 2010

Maybe I am cynical (I know that you find that hard to believe), but I have heard and seen a number of Canon MFDs that are serviced by Ikon not running well. My question is are they doing this purposely for strategic reasons, or is it simply an economical decision by Ikon to put in less parts since they are more expensive for Ikon buy (since they lost their Canon Authorized status)?

Why you might ask would Ikon purposely do a poor job on servicing a Canon MFD. As you know Ikon can no longer sell Canon MFDs since they were purchased by Ricoh. But they still have a lot of customers that have and love their Canon products. In fact a number of customers have said to me that they are not sure now if they loved Ikon or loved the Canon products that Ikon carried.

When it comes to the last year or so of an Ikon \ Canon lease customers (and Sales people) begin to want to demo new equipment. Usually the incumbent dealer \ product has an edge IF the servicing dealer has done a good job, and IF the current product has done well. In my 20+ years of experience it is rare that a Canon MFD runs poorly over a 5 year (or less) lease. I know there are lemons in every product line but Canon MFDs that are well serviced have been historically VERY RELIABLE. That is one of the points that BLI made when they awarded Canon MFD line of the year.

So how does it help Ikon (as an incumbent) to let the Canon MFD that they sold to the customer run poorly? Well it is a gamble but what if the Canon runs great? Will that help or hurt Ikon when it comes time to upgrade the equipment? It could very well hurt Ikon because IF THE CUSTOMER REALLY LIKES THEIR CANON, Ikon is screwed because they can not sell them new Canon MFDs. But if the Canon MFDs begin to run poorly for the last year or more of the lease, the Ikon Sales rep can at least make the case that Canon and not Ikon is at fault. If the Sales rep is on friendly terms with the customer, and if they have done a good job servicing the equipment in the past the customer may give them the benefit of the doubt.

This came home to me when I went to visit a current Ikon \ Canon account and the Customer said that they had always liked their Canon equipment, up until the last year it always ran great. But they had one Canon 50ppm MFD that Ikon told them that they could not fix BUT offered to give this customer a loaner Ricoh (at no cost) to get them to the end of their lease. When I heard this from the customer (I heard the guys from the Guinness commercial say “BRILLIANT!!!”).  What a smart, albeit devious way to get the customer to do a long term demo of the Ricoh product. And of course the tech will make sure that the Ricoh runs great and the Canon does not. So when the lease is finally up the Ikon sales rep can make the case that the Ricoh is just as good as the Canon. Hmmmmm? Am I being too cynical, you decide.

It could just as easily be that the Ikon techs are not putting in as many parts, or not updating the firmware as needed. That could explain it too. But knowing Ikon as I do I would not put it past them to actually be setting up this scenario. If a customer wants to test whether or not their Ikon Sales \ Service reps are “pulling a fast one” when they say they can’t fix this particular Canon, call in an Authorized Canon Dealer and give them a crack at fixing this Ikon problem MFD. Then you’ll know whether you love Ikon or actually love Canon.

That’s my $0.02
Vince McHugh
vince.mchugh@necs.biz
WWW.NECS.BIZ