Used network gear: Delivered faster, costs less, survey says

UNEDA group studies its members with none too surprising results

Survey of UNEDA members suggests the used equipment dealers deliver gear faster and respond to customers more quickly then their original equipment maker counterparts.

The United Network Equipment Dealer's Association, a group of used-equipment resellers, wants to change corporate tech-buying perceptions about the aftermarket for Cisco and other network hardware products.

This week UNEDA released a study of its own members that could further its efforts. The study of more than 128 pre-owned network equipment dealers worldwide found 95% said they can deliver used network gear to customers within one or two days, which the group says is a contrast to the typical 10-week delivery cycle of OEM vendors such as Cisco and Nortel.

Other reasons UNEDA members say customers opt to buy gear from them is responsiveness -- 90% cited that as the major reason customers buy their network equipment from them, followed closely by 87% who cited product availability as the main driver for customers.

Rapid delivery was the third reason 86% of the used gear dealers said customers would opt to buy pre-owned gear rather than buy new from OEM vendors. Equipment price and cost savings came in as the fourth.

In addition, the companies also reported they effectively maintain business with repeat customers. About one-half reported that between 51% and 74% of sales came from existing customers, and another one-third calculated that at least 75% of their sales involved returning customers, UNEDA says.

UNEDA executives say the survey, the first the group has conducted of its members, validates the role of such secondary providers in the network industry and solidifies the relevance of the aftermarket for used network hardware.

"The results of our survey illustrate the well-being of the market while also illuminating top challenges, such as the continued need to counter the fear, uncertainty and doubt OEMs use to dissuade companies from purchasing pre-owned gear," said Mike Sheldon, president of UNEDA's board of directors as well as president and CEO of Network Hardware Resale.

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