The Bluetooth connection

Baracoda is an innovator in the auto ID market. Dedicated to and leading the way in the manufacture of Bluetooth wireless bar code readers (and also offering a Bluetooth RFID reading device), the company promotes the development of wireless data capture solutions for sales force automation and field services as well as for all real-time traceability applications for the retail, transportation and logistics industries. Grald Masson, VP Traceability Division, talks about the company, its channel structure and opportunities for the channel. 


Q: Thank you for taking the time to participate in this Q&A session; can we begin with a look at your route to market?


A: Our business is mainly achieved through indirect channels:


        Large corporations are covered via system integrators and large value-add resellers (VARs) that Baracoda supports on a direct basis

        SMEs are serviced via smaller resellers that source their products from a local master distributor whom Baracoda will support directly.


Baracodas direct sales represent a low single digit of our sales. It corresponds to historical customers who have in the past been involved in providing inputs to product development. Our strategy is to have partners fulfil the totality of our business.


Q: Why do you think partners and customers choose to work with you?


A: We provide the most complete Bluetooth range of scanners. These are designed for:


        Adding bar code scanning capabilities to mobile devices such as: mobile and smart phones, PDAs, etc. We deliver a complete set of advanced application program interfaces (APIs) for a large variety of mobile platforms: (Windows Mobile, Blackberry, .Net, Palm, and Symbian).

        Cordless bar code scanning for in premise applications such as receiving shipments/goods, asset management, picking, inventory, etc. For small and medium-size enterprises, customers can utilise the Plug & Scan Baracoda concept, which enables instant connection of wireless barcode devices via a RS232 serial port or USB port adapter to the host.


While some scanner manufacturers have one or two Bluetooth scanners as part of a wide product catalogue, Baracoda is only focused on all aspects of Bluetooth technology: Ease of connection, power management, security, etc As a result, VDC has confirmed that Baracoda is the largest manufacturer of Bluetooth barcode scanners with a 35 per cent market share.


Q:  How do you support your channel?


A: Developers get access to free APIs that can be used to overnight enable any application. Technical support is provided free-of-charge via a developer forum accessible on the partner section of our web site.


In each country, Baracoda has appointed a specialised two-tier distributor. (Editors note: see the Baracoda for a list of countries serviced.) These distributors have received advanced technical training from Baracodas engineers and are able to support partners with first and second level support.


Moreover, Baracoda monitors partner satisfaction to ensure that they are fully supported on their projects.


Q: What benefits and incentives do you offer to your existing partners/new partners?


A: We offer dedicated access to our website resources for our accredited partners. Herewhere they can find marketing materials, emailing templates, images, documentation as well as all the very latest technical information such as APIs, technical manuals, etc.

We regularly conduct marketing activities such as telemarketing, emailing where qualified contacts will be directed to our accredited partners locally. 

We also provide co-marketing and incentive programs for our partners.


Finally, we have a global communication program that includes PR and advertising on a regular basis, so that we can increase our market visibility and popularity.


Q: Do you want new partners now? What qualities/skills are you looking for in new partners?


A: In cooperation with our existing two-tier distributors, Baracoda is looking to expand its network of resellers, VARs and ISVs that are offering mobile solutions within the following applications:


           parcel logistics

           data collection in warehouse

           picking/order preparation

           asset management

           field services

           sales force automation

           inventory management


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