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Hewlett-Packard can't seem to put a foot wrong when it comes to mothering its channel siblings, claims independent researcher IDC. It believes Connect -- H-P's umbrella channel marketing programme -- is one of best IT channel schemes in Europe and other similar schemes from competitors simply don't match the structure and organisation of H-P's investment. Brian Pearce, the author of H-P Connect -- H-P's Master plan For Branding the Channels, says the company is a perfect example of a manufacturer realising it must look after its channel partners. "I know it's nothing new," said Pearce, "but Connect should reduce confusion and make it simpler for the channel and customers." Great news for H-P's 65,000 resellers throughout Europe who can rest easy in the knowledge that from now on, they're going to be mollycoddled by the company. It's estimated that around 18,000 resellers in Europe will have signed up to Connect by the end of the year, which still leaves two thirds of the resellers still waiting to attach themselves to H-P's apron strings. Bless. ®

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