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July 17, 1990

RAPID RECALL, NOW UNDER METROLOGIE TUTELAGE, WANTS IBM KIT TO ACCOUNT FOR 50% OF SALES

By CBR Staff Writer

Rapid Recall Ltd, in the headlines recently as one of DEC’s new value-added wholesalers, has formed a specialised IBM sales and marketing group. Acquired by Metrologie SA in early 1989 (CI No 1,190), Rapid Recall has traditionally derived between 55% and 60% of its revenues from DEC equipment. IBM represents around 25%, but the company hopes to see that grow to just under half. Frank Kemp, Rapid Recall’s sales and marketing director, says that growth will be due partly to the influence of the IBM Group, but also to the effect of the RS/6000. Kemp expects to have a demonstration machine within the next two weeks, and to be shipping the product sometime next month. He believes that the RS/6000 marks IBM’s commitment to Unix, unlike the RT, which suffered from a lack of strong marketing and internal direction. On the other hand, Kemp says that even if internal competition between different IBM divisions looks like lack of direction, it is often the driving force to technological innovation. He claims that IBM’s myriad mid-range offerings aren’t any more confusing to end-users than the choices they make between different manufacturers, and the problems they face connecting different equipment. Rapid Recall has no immediate plans to carry the AS/400, but Kemp believes that IBM has made a strategic decision to link Systems Application Architecture and Unix, although it probably won’t be a seamless integration. As for Rapid Recall’s relationship with DEC, Kemp says that the company did suffer when distributors were excluded from large accounts as neither DEC nor its distributors benefited from a box-shifting environment. For IBM’s distribution channels however, Kemp has nothing but praise.

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