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Channel awards event includes surprise for AMD’s Grasby

Every year, the UK channel dons penguin suites and silk wraps, before heading for Battersea Park and the awesomely profitable CRN awards ceremony. “Why do the elite head for a park?”, you might wonder. Fear not, our spies were on hand to lift the hemline and give you a little insight.

First up, what is the channel ?   The channel lets product flow to customers.

Factories in the Far East will produce goods, load them onto pallets and those pallets are packed into containers before being loaded onto ships bound for countries like the UK. They dock, get unloaded, put on lorries and driven to distributors like Micro-P, Computer 2000, Ingram, CMS and M2M.

Those distributors break the products down even further and then send shipments to stores like Dabs, YOYOTech, eBuyer and John Lewis. Customers like us, will buy from these stores.  That, is the channel.

The biggest magazines for the UK channel are CRN (Computer Reseller News) and PC Retail. Once a year, these publications throw glitzy parties in London and offer everyone the chance to buy a ‘chicken deja vu’ dinner for £200.  We have no idea what the costs area, but it does appear to be a tidy little earner, with almost 200 tables of 10 seats packed into a massive tent in Battersea Park, the basic maths says that £200 tickets x 10 people on a table x 200 tables would yield £400,000 for one night’s work. Nice.

The event is presented by CRN’s editor, Sara Yirrell and the hall itself looks pretty amazing.

Sara doesn't normally tower over people like this. Nope. Projectors have been used, so that even people at the poor tables (right at the very back of the twinkling hall), can hear the awards nice and clearly.

While the room itself was full of the elite of the British Channel, many were camera shy and KitGuru’s spies were unable to capture  any intimate intercourse.

Lady Gaga moment, as this young lady deflects the camera flash with a large lump of gold

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One interesting fact that came to light during the evening was CRN’s list of the industry’s top people.
They call it The A-List and it contains all the most important folks that you’re ever likely to meet.

While AMD VP Darren Grasby was heavily featured in CRN's A-List handbook of movers & shakers, KitGuru couldn't find any mention of nVidia or Intel people. Time for new PR companies?

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Overall, this was a really positive event and showed that if the world is not in a massive economic slump, then there IS still life in the UK. The dollar floating from $1.4 to $1.6 has lifted a fog from the channel and business is starting to flow.

Here’s a full list of winners:-

  • Systems distributor of the Year – Micro P
  • Distributor of the Year – Computer 2000
  • Vendor of the Year – NetApp
  • Reseller of the Year – Softcat
  • Systems vendor of the Year – Acer
  • Storage vendor of the Year – Dell
  • Software distributor of the Year – Computer 2000
  • AV Distributor of the Year – C2000/Maverick
  • Service Provider of the Year – Eurodata
  • Specialist vendor of the Year – Meru
  • Specialist Distributor of the Year – VADition
  • Specialist Reseller of the Year – NCE
  • Software vendor of the Year – GFI
  • Security vendor of the Year – Trend Micro
  • Security Distributor of the Year – e92plus
  • SME Reseller of the Year – CCS Media
  • Storage Distributor of the Year – Hammer
  • Mid-Market reseller of the Year – Fabric Technologies
  • Networking vendor of the Year – ShoreTel
  • Networking Distributor of the Year – Comstor
  • Enterprise Reseller of the Year – PC Ware
  • Converged Reseller of the Year – Britannic Technologies
  • Channel Personality of the Year – Paul Barlow
  • Emerging Company of the Year – Block Solutions

More here

KitGuru says: With Sandybridge, Fusion, the 500 and 6000 series graphics and the rest of the innovations coming our way in 2011, the world is looking like a much brighter place.

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