ViewSonic Announces New Global Structure


ViewSonic announced a global restructuring Thursday aimed at improving its operations.

The company said it will unite its Americas, EMEA and Asian operations under Alan Chang, who will take the role of managing director for the Americas, EMEA and Asia.

The changes come after the departure of ViewSonic Americas President Matthew Milne. Chairman and CEO James Chu announced Milne's departure in an internal email on Tuesday.

The company also said ViewSonic's European president and managing director, Jan Jensen, will be let go as the company unites it's divisions under Chang, who will hold all duties previously held by Milne and Jensen.
Chang has been president and managing director of the Asia Pacific MEA group.

In efforts to bolster its market position, Viewsonic has bulked up its product line in recent months with the launch of new products that include its VX2255 22-inch monitor equipped with a built-in Web camera, the VX 1940, super-HD dynamic contrast ratio monitor (the company's top-of-the-line 19inch LCD) and the PJ 258 ViewDock projector.

Viewsonic also has plans to roll out a new line of projectors with the latest DLP chip set technology in December followed by a new projector, TVs, and monitors at CES for consumer and business users available through channel partners.

Channel partners should see improvements in the way the company brings new products to market and to sales and marketing efforts, said Jeff Volpe, vice president of marketing, Americas, in an interview with CMP Channel.

"ViewSonic's relationship with the channel has been part of our long-term heritage. We've been in the business for 20 years and we have always been a channel company. Since I've been with the company, which is 12 years, we've worked continuously to try and improve our methods for helping the channel be successful with the channel," Volpe said.

Volpe said that in the last two years ViewSonic has revamped its Partner Access channel offering as part of an all out effort to bring VARs a best in class program that is easy for them to access and find "opportunities to grow" their business.

The changes in management consolidate the company's leadership and support functions in its three regions to better leverage brand strength, operations and competitiveness, Volpe said.

"We expect that the new structure will allow our company to respond more quickly to the needs of customers and partners to develop and productize new and emerging technologies and bring those products to market quickly and more efficiently," he said.

"Alan's tenure with ViewSonic has been one that has been focused on resellers and channel marketing and doing business with the partners that we currently have been exercising here in the Americas," Volpe said. "We're very confident and excited to offer this new opportunity to the channel and assurance that from their point of view their relationship with ViewSonic is only going to be enhanced."

ViewSonic also announced the formation of its ViewSonic TV division, which will focus on the LCD TV and digital signage markets. VTV will be headed up by vice president and general manager of VTV, Steve Woo.

The changes come on the heels of a disappointing third quarter in which the company saw its Americas sales decline from $192.6 million from the third quarter in 2006 to $163.7 million the third quarter in 2007. The company also posted a $5 million loss in the Americas region for the quarter.

David Shields, CFO, at Shields Electronic Supply, Knoxville, Ten., said he doesn't expect the management changes at ViewSonic to have an impact on his business and that he's happy with his relationship with the company.

"I'm happy with my rep, and the sales people that I work with are fantastic," he said. "From a support standpoint in the field I've been very happy with my relationship with them."

Recent changes to the company's customer service division have been positive, he said. "I've seen marked improvements since they made that change - a considerable difference in how the calls are handled and in getting something done."

Shields said his sales reps have told him the company will be bringing out new products next year that he thinks will fill gaps he sees in the company's product line-up. "If they do what they're talking about doing and they continue to make a product that has the quality that they typically have I think they're well on their way to a very successful venture. I will be very interested to see how their programs come to market and fruition over the next quarter or two."

Ryan Yu, president of Daly Computers, a solution provider that focuses on the government sector based in Clarksburg, Md., said he thinks the changes at ViewSonic will have a positive impact on its channel and reseller customers.

"I think very highly of ViewSonic because I think they're a great channel company. They have worked really hard over the years and they continue to work hard and I don't see that commitment going away," Yu said.

"I think we're headed into a global world more and more even though our focus here is on the Americas, so any benefits we achieve through best practices or exciting and innovative trends from around the world, I think it's all good," he said.