HTC’s plans to ink a direct distribution deal with Exertis Micro-P have fallen at the final hurdle, Mobile understands.
Sources say the two companies were set to sign an exclusive distribution deal this month, with Exertis Micro-P announcing the forthcoming deal to its vendors.
However some of Exertis Micro-P’s existing partners raised concerns about the impact of the deal on their relationship with the distributor, prompting Exertis Micro-P to call off the deal, according to industry sources.
The decision leaves the field open to Exertis Micro-P rivals, including Brightstar 20:20 and Data Select. HTC’s current distributors are Tech Data Mobile and Ingram Micro Mobility.
Failure to forge a deal with Exertis Micro-P will come as a blow to HTC, which entered into talks with the distributor after a major overhaul of its distribution strategy last year as part of the manufacturer’s drive to regain territory in the UK’s mobile market.
Sources say HTC was seeking a distributor that could aggressively promote its devices after suffering disappointing sales of its highly rated flagship phone the HTC One.
Both Exertis Micro-P and HTC declined to comment.
In separate news, Jeni Patrick, mobile head of marketing at Exertis Micro-P, who was set to join Tech Data Mobile as marketing director, has decided to remain in her post at Exertis Micro-P.
The appointment of Patrick, who is a highly respected player in the mobile industry, was revealed by Mobile in December last year and announced by Tech Data Mobile this month. Her decision to stay at Exertis Micro-P will be keenly felt at Tech Data Mobile, which has seen a haemorrhaging of key staff over the past 12 months.
Both Exertis Micro-P and Tech Data Mobile declined to comment on Patrick’s decision.
Exertis Micro-P has also taken on Fridolin Engel, former regional sales manager at O2 this month. Engel will take on the role of head of sales at the distributor’s Conect division.
Meanwhile Simon Johnson, former Exertis Micro-P retail account manager for the grocer channel, has been poached by Brightstar, where he has taken on the role of account director.
Johnson joined Exertis Micro-P in May 2011 from Shebang Distribution, where he was national account manager from October 2008.