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Samsung Business: Execs Talk Shedding The Consumer-Device Label

Samsung execs tell Xchange attendees that its new approach will let them go to customers with a complete portfolio of connected Samsung products, ranging from mobile devices to digital signage offerings.

The foundation of Samsung's success has been as a consumer electronics company, but the South Korean technology giant is determined to increase its presence in the enterprise.

Sporting cowboy hats, Richard Hutton, director of channel marketing, and Pete Richardson, director, channel development sales team, hit the stage on Monday at the 2015 XChange Solution Provider conference in Dallas to talk about Samsung's plan for an aggressive partner push to grow its B2B customer base.

[Related: Samsung Confronts Apple With Release Of High-End Galaxy S6, Galaxy S6 Edge]

Samsung is combining its mobile business with its IT products business into "one Samsung" with a new brand known as Samsung Business. The aim of Samsung Business is to give partners a holistic approach that will allow them to go to customers with a complete portfolio of connected Samsung products, ranging from its mobile devices to its digital signage offerings.

Samsung is hoping that adding its mobile devices to its enterprise portfolio will open the door for the company to sell its other IT products in the enterprise. In doing so Samsung is looking to grow its B2B sales from 15 percent of the company's global revenue to 40 percent.

On the product side, Samsung has introduced a handful of B2B products dedicated to its solution provider community, including the ruggedized Galaxy Tab Active and the Galaxy Tab 4 built around Google Play for Education.

"About two years ago 30 percent of this audience was doing some kind of Samsung business with us; as of this year it's now over 50 percent," Hutton told attendees. "We're here to drive the other 50 percent."

"One of the knocks against us has been that our services piece has not been up to scratch in the B2B space," Hutton added. "Two years ago we created a B2B services organization and we now have more of our partners out there becoming service-authorized."

Hutton also said that Samsung is making a consulting selling push, starting with mobile products, which should provide Samsung partners with a boost in their go-to-market strategies.

To make this B2B push a success, Samsung will need to overcome its perception as a consumer-focused business.

David Bliss, director of professional services for Apex Technology Management, a Reading Calif.-based MSP focused on the health-care space, said that his customers still view Samsung as a consumer option. But according to Bliss, a heavy BYOD push could make Samsung a viable option, especially with tablets. "It will be interesting to see how these Galaxy tablets come into business, particularly with security," said Bliss. "That's where Microsoft and Dell really have an edge."

PUBLISHED MARCH 2, 2015

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