Crestron’s news release puzzled us here in the CX newsroom. Our weekly staff lunch at the Willoughby Pub was abandoned as we went into deep analysis.
A weeks reflection, and some inquiries failed to lift the fog of confusion about this. Let’s review it line-by-line. We’ve italicized the words from the release.
This year Crestron Australia & New Zealand (ANZ) will proudly be celebrating its ten year anniversary.
Without picking straws, there is no legal Crestron ‘entity’ known as the above on the Australian register. So we take this to mean that ten years ago Crestron appointed Audio Telex Communications as its distributor, and of course thereafter Hills purchased Audio Telex and Hills were the Crestron distributor. Until now.
With your support Crestron ANZ has enjoyed significant continued growth to become a dominant force across various market segments including Education, Government and Commercial sectors. Our 400+ engineering team in the US continues to deliver market leading innovative technologies such as Digital Media and Fusion to the industry, which has facilitated fundamental changes in the way our customers work, live & communicate. We have seen Crestron move from the boardroom to the building as our Integrated by Design platform continues to expand.
At the centre of our continued growth is you, our customers. And it is you who is the motivation for the new era for Crestron ANZ which we now document. Crestron has also had a long and fruitful association with Hills Limited and we will certainly see continuing this for the foreseeable future.
So CX called Stuart Craig, head of Crestron in the region. While he is an articulate and confident communicator, he held fast to the line that Hills were indeed very involved in Crestron still. But the sales calls would not go to the Hills call centre. Although Hills would handle the products. At least we think that’s what he intimated.
On the back of ten years of excellent performance, ANZ is the number one performing territory in the world for Crestron, producing excellent growth in sales. The time seems right for us to further enhance our presence here in Australia and New Zealand. Crestron ANZ will now exist and be managed as a standalone business.
Our interpretation of that is: ‘Crestron will now handle its own business in the region.’
What does this mean for you, our customer?
Effective July 1st 2014 the following will be in place:
- All quotations, product orders & invoicing will be separated as Crestron product only. Crestron account and product access will be separate to your Hills account.
- Crestron will introduce its Global Partner Rewards Program for qualifying companies in ANZ
- Crestron will introduce its Global A+ Education Rewards Program into ANZ
- From July 7th Crestron will have a single National phone contact point 1800 555 040. This number will give you the option of choosing a sales or technical/service path, staffed by dedicated, trained Crestron ANZ staff members.
- Crestron will be strengthening our project support by adopting the US famous ‘Tech Sales’ model and you will enjoy the same speed of service as our customers in the US enjoy, as we assist you with design and quoting for your next project. The ‘Tech Sales’ model shall rollout in ANZ over Q3 and Q4 this year with updates to follow.
- Crestron ANZ will be adopting the Crestron US True Blue Support Model which will allow us to better track and report on your technical support calls as we join Crestron’s global program.
- Our local web presence will be simplified to only relevant content so we can take advantage the phenomenal resource that is Crestron.com. Other than training and local contacts or news, www.crestron.com will become your major online port for Crestron information.
- Apart from personal direct contact, email addresses will be available for the following:
- firstname.lastname@example.org Product availability, purchase orders, pricing
- email@example.com Technical issues & advanced product or programming enquiries
- firstname.lastname@example.org Warranty & non warranty repairs
- email@example.com All training related enquiries
- firstname.lastname@example.org All project and design assistance
In addition, Crestron ANZ will expand its dedicated staff with an increased committed (sic) to sales, design, support, service and administration across ANZ.
That reads ‘we will have our own reps in the field’.
Crestron US will also be expanding its presence in the APAC region. Asia is booming for Crestron and we will be investing in that region too. We currently have over 350 staff and 22 offices in Asia and there is more to come. For those who are not aware, as of 1st May Peter Greentree now works alongside Stuart Craig as the Project and Technical Manager for Asia Pacific operating from our APAC office in Chatswood, Sydney. As part of this expansion program, we are also to add a Regional Sales Manager for ANZ. We hope to make an announcement on the successful ANZ Regional Sales Manager candidate before the Integrate Expo in August.
Over the coming months we will also be re-launching a full partner training program in the lead up to our ten year Crestron Forum to be held in October with details to be announced shortly.
We are also pleased to announce some changes to our local Crestron team. We are very happy to announce Dave Rashleigh as General Manager Crestron Australia & New Zealand.
Hey wait on, Dave was the sales manager at Hills SVL last time we looked. So who takes his place at Hills?
We are also very happy to announce Bignesh (Vicky) Dayal as Head of Technology for Crestron.
We make these changes for the best reasons; excellent growth, a broadening product range (big things to come…) and for you, our customers, to serve you even better as our industry continues to evolve.
So unless CX is very mistaken, this looks to us like Crestron have moved into town, and that Hills are now a shipping agent. Which may in itself prove lucrative for them, if they charge 10% on $30 million worth of stock every year, that’s an easy $3 million. Assuming Crestron finance their own stock.
What do YOU think of this?
(Pictured: Audio Telex Communications co-founder, the late Rod Craig).
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