Hewlett-Packard Targets Small Businesses Through CDW Pact

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Computer maker Hewlett-Packard Co., Palo Alto, CA, yesterday announced a marketing agreement with CDW Computer Centers Inc., Vernon Hills, IL, to promote Hewlett-Packard's products to small- and medium-sized businesses.

CDW, which markets computer products through catalogs, a telephone sales force and the Internet, said it would establish a dedicated toll-free number for customers to obtain information about HP products and place orders and has launched a new web site (www,cdw.com/hp), from which customers can order HP products directly.

In addition, CDW also plans to begin mailing some HP showcase catalogs to prospect for new business customers and will follow the mailings with outbound telemarketing. A CDW spokeswoman would not reveal details about the planned mailings. In addition, the catalogs also are scheduled to be placed as inserts in Computer Shopper magazine.

CDW will market a variety of HP business products, including the Brio and Vectra line of personal computers and ProCurve networking hardware, in addition to accessories and other compatible products.

HP's effort to target the SMB market comes as its rivals also are targeting the group by offering computer products directly. IBM, Armonk, NY, said it would begin offering its entire line of personal computers on the Internet in an effort to make purchasing easier for SMB customers. Meanwhile direct marketers Gateway, North Sioux City, SD, and Dell Computer Corp., Round Rock, TX, both also have intensified their efforts to reach SMB customers.

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