BenQ Canada tries another comeback

Published: March 26th, 2008

BenQ Canada Corp., a computing, communications and consumer electronics vendor, will this year focus its efforts on the sales of its projector and LCD monitor products to help reposition its brand in the Canadian market. In doing so, the company has introduced its X2200W and X2000W monitors, which BenQ claims are the world’s fastest LCD monitors.

Michelle Warren, a senior research analyst at London, Ont.-based Info-Tech Research Group, said when the brand first launched in Canada in 2003, it made such an impact in the industry with its massive marketing and advertising campaigns. Initially, Warren said the Taipei, Taiwan-based company did well with its Canadian unit shipments but for whatever reason, the company eventually had to put a halt to its advertising activities and re-evaluate its go-to-market (GTM) strategy.

“There were many rumours as to why this happened,” Warren said. “Some think that with all of the money that was being spent with advertising, there was nothing left to continue and BenQ’s market presence then started to slip.”

While Mike Booker, general manager at BenQ Canada, admits the company faced difficulties in the Canadian space, he said this year, the company will work to rebuild its brand by focusing on its projector and widescreen LCD monitor offerings.

“BenQ isn’t a line that sells itself,” Booker said. “In the next six to 12 months we’re looking at changing the face of BenQ.”

Booker said its projectors and LCD monitors are two of the company’s core strengths and a special focus this year will be placed on its widescreen LCDs starting at 20-inches and above.

Warren said the projector space is a competitive market in Canada and in order to successfully compete with other vendors, she said BenQ will have to stay within the confines of what other vendors are offering.

“Projectors are increasingly common,” Warren said. “We’re at a stage now where a lot of companies are replacing their projectors because they’ve hit their maturity. BenQ can benefit from this trend.”

BenQ Canada’s GTM strategy is through broad base distributors Ingram Micro and Tech Data, niche distributors, independent retail shops and VAR groups.

“We’re strictly a distribution channel-friendly vendor,” Booker said. “Margins on our monitors range from 10 to 15 per cent depending on the sku. With projectors, that ranges between 10 to 25 points.”

The company recently introduced two LCD monitors, the X2200W and the X2000W. Both monitors, Booker said, are designed for entry-level gamers and office graphic intensive users. The X2200W is a 22-inch LCD monitor that features 8ms motion picture response time (MPRT) and also 2ms grey-to-grey response time. Its MSRP is $369.99. The X2000W is a 20-inch monitor with a MSRP of $279.99.

“Their price points are pretty good,” Warren said. “The company can still leverage itself in 2008 as long as they keep a focus on their products, features and price points.