D&H See Strong Vista, Office Sales With System Builders

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"We're quite happy with the sales. Vista is good for us," said Jeff Davis, vice president of sales for D&H, Harrisburg, Pa. "The Vista numbers were higher than expected."

Davis, who was attending the distributor's regional road show last week in the City of Industry, Calif., a center for custom system builders, said he thinks D&H may have done better than other distributors because of its focus on solution providers that sell to small and midsize businesses. "In the SMB sphere, they tend to move faster. Plus we cater to a reseller base that caters to the home," he said.

Davis said that while business versions did well, they did not do as well as the home premium and home basic versions of the operating system.

For similar reasons, he said Office 2007 sales were also well beyond expectations. One small-business solution provider at the show, though, said that his sales of Office 2007 were being hurt by not having disks with the OEM versions.

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"Who was the idiot at Microsoft who decided to save 10 cents on a disk?" said Frank Thomson, CEO and president of Our Computer Tech, Los Angeles. He said being able to give customers disks was one big advantage system builders had over name-brand vendors. "We lose out on a sale when someone really insists on having a disk," he said.

Davis said D&H, which experienced 19 percent growth last year, was anticipating a big upgrade cycle in 2007. He said that while peripheral sales did well last year, many people were holding off on upgrading systems. "The new big upgrade cycle is coming," he said. "This is the year for a big uplift in hardware."