D&H's Dan Schwab: Partner Investment Is Propelling D&H's Growth, Expect More In 2017

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Propelled by an increased investment in its reseller partners, D&H Distributing reported overall sales growth of nearly 8 percent sales across all product lines for the 2016 calendar year.

Dan Schwab, co-president of the Harrisburg, Penn.-based distributor said the company’s sales growth in 2016 was driven by a number of product and vertical categories, not defined by a single product or service like it was in 2015 when the Windows Server 2003 upgrade boosted the company’s sales growth.

“This year was exciting because [the growth] was more broad-based than in other years,” he said, adding that the company’s investment in its reseller partners was a key reason the company saw growth this year.   

[Related: D&H Co-President Dan Schwab Talks 'Investment Mode,' A Cloud-Themed Trade Show And Hot SMB Products]

Schwab said the key categories that drove growth for the distributor during the calendar year included a 12 percent increase in networking security sales and a 16 percent boost in solid state drive sales; He expects both categories to grow throughout 2017.

D&H reported double-digit growth in seven other product categories, including a 77 percent growth in sales of IoT products, 75 percent growth in its new cloud offering, and 52 percent growth in 3D printing solutions.

Schwab said that D&H had its greatest vertical successes this year in the education and medical spaces, thanks – in part – to the investment that D&H made in training its reseller partners on how to leverage federal grants in education and better understand federal medical regulations.

"We see that the investments that we made in training in education really paid off … A year ago, not a lot of people were bullish heading into 2016; D&H was unique. But this year, headed into 2017, coming off of a year of almost 8 percent growth in the VAR business, we are even more optimistic," Schwab said.

Throughout 2016 D&H continued to build on the programs, training and education services that it provides to its reseller partners.

This year, the distributor introduced some new programs, including a pre-sales support program that is open to all of the distributor’s reseller partners and is aimed at helping resellers build personalized sales plans that target a broader spectrum of solutions.

D&H also unveiled a best-practices solution map called the SMB Blueprint Program and launched its first cloud portal, called the Cloud Marketplace, to automate the sale of both Microsoft 365 and Azure to resellers.

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