The former ABB Drives Alliance and ABB Motor Service Partner networks are now part of the Authorised Value Provider programme, a global initiative that over time will encompass more third party companies selling other products from the ABB portfolio.
The Authorised Value Provider will provide technical expertise, product and service availability all under one recognisable, local branch structure. It extends across the entire lifecycle of both products by providing services such as energy and productivity appraisals, installation, start up and preventive maintenance.
‘Industry is evolving at a fast pace and the demands of customers are changing quicker than ever,’ said Neil Ritchie, local business unit manager for ABB’s drives and controls business. ‘The Authorised Value Provider programme marks the growth of the already successful ABB channel network into a bigger, better, stronger one; a network that is designed to meet the rapidly changing requirements of global business by providing consistent access to ABB products and services.’
ABB has identified several reasons why its network needs to evolve including greater customer demand for outsourcing, increased interest in packaged solutions, widening legislations, regulations and directives, expanding array of engineering tools, advanced product technology and a broader range of lifecycle services.
A distinctive logo symbolises the public face of the Authorised Value Provider network. Third party companies, authorised to display the logo, have signed an agreement with ABB to stock, distribute and provide local value added support.
Tough entrance exams
Companies joining the network need to have a viable business that has been involved with motor driven systems for several years. The company then needs to invest in dedicated internal engineers, sales personnel and service engineers; have suitable premises with a training facility and workshop; and agree stock levels and a joint business plan. They then complete a series of rigorous training courses and exams and are given direct access to ABB engineers with expert knowledge in different areas. This training ensures that the high quality of technical support and product back up, required by ABB customers, is consistent throughout Authorised Value Provider operations.
Growth through packages
The network takes ABB one step closer to growing its business around the ‘packages’ concept. The idea is that customers can benefit from all the components used throughout a drive train or automation system. As such, the Authorised Value Providers act as the eyes and ears for customers in need of other products from ABB’s diverse portfolio and can facilitate contact to the relevant product division. They have in-depth knowledge of local markets and are conversant with the defined ABB products and processes. Each of them brings its own set of skills and services and collectively they can tackle the entire diverse ABB product portfolio and service customer needs.
The drives and motors networks are joined by the robotic automation business, making a total of 23 individual companies initially forming the Authorised Value Provider network in the UK.