Making the right move

Chalking out new business plans for India with acquisition of 51 per cent stake in Protocol Solutions, Owen Chen, CEO of Posiflex Technology Inc talks about its long standing master distributor in India…
Owen Chen

Chalking out new business plans for India with acquisition of 51 per cent stake in Protocol Solutions, Owen Chen, CEO of Posiflex Technology Inc talks about its long standing master distributor in India… 

Suranjana Basu (SB): What is Protocol Solution’s relationship with Posiflex? What kind of research work is involved to keep pace with the fast moving retail industry? 
Owen Chen (OC):
Posiflex is a well known brand of POS. So long Protocol was the master distributor of Posiflex in India, and its product offerings were available through its retail partners. Now, Posiflex has bought out 51 per cent of stake in Protocol Solutions making it the subsidiary in India. The company will have 3-4 master distributors region-wise. In other countries Posiflex has 100 per cent owned subsidiaries. 

Our research team is constantly striving to make the product scalable. In a product, hardware has to be scalable to suit varied situations. In such architecture, addition in hardware is an easy task with the upgradation in software. 

SB: Do you have special offerings for the Indian retail market?  
OC:
Yes, soon we are going to launch Forpis, a POS for stand alone stores. The product is ideal for the small retailers. It has built-in printer, 8 inch TFT screen and built-in fan-less CPU. The product is single cable operated. The product comes in the range of Rs 25,000-40,000. 
 

SB: How prospective is the Indian retail market? What has prompted you to take majority share in Protocol Solutions? 
OC:
India is gearing up for the international competition. There is no dearth of skilled professionals. In this scenario, this recent buy out is our attempt to consolidate our subsidiaries and make our presence felt in India. We feel that besides the countries like US, Germany, China, Argentina, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Russia, where we are already present, India is one country that calls for attention from business community. 

SB: How skilled are the Indian IT professionals? Will you set up manufacturing units in India too?  
OC:
Yes, we have a plan for setting up a manufacturing unit in India, but only after 5-6 years. Presently, our primary focus is on aggressive marketing and to make retailers aware of our products. Secondly, we will focus on research and development to bring out more India-specific products, like I have told you about Forpis earlier. The product is entirely sealed having fan-less CPU. These features are added keeping in mind the dusty environment of mom and pop stores. Till date our products are sourced from Taiwan. 
 
SB: How different is the Indian market from the US market? How are you working out to cater to the price-sensitive consumers in India?
OC:
In India the challenge is in fixing the price point. In Europe, good products are sold at good prices; in the US, good products are sold at fair prices; but in India we have to sell it at affordable prices. To position the price point we need to cooperate with the software developers who are developing software for PC platform. We want them to develop these software for POS platform. PC platform requires latest processing and upgradation of configurations every three months, whereas POS is a workable and reliable solutions offering long term support of minimum five years. The use of POS instead of PC will bring down the operational cost. Also, I must suggest instead of using high specific applications one should go for intelligent applications of IT to minimise cost. 
 
 
 

Owen Chen, CEO, Posiflex Technology Inc.
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