First Distribution is a value-added distributor of leading global brands, providing complex ICT solutions to the Enterprise and SME markets. The First Distribution model is based on delivering solutions through an established reseller base, which has been built up through a history of consistent trustworthy service and nurturing resellers as business partners.
First Distribution’s unwavering commitment to their business partners, whose success they view as their own, ensures a keen understanding of their resellers’ needs, enabling First Distribution to bring maximum value to their endeavours. First Distribution prides itself on its ability to service market leading brands in the enterprise IT market, and has been mandated by some of the largest and most successful IT companies in the world to distribute their products and services.
These include IBM, Oracle, Dell EMC, Microsoft, Riverbed, Samsung, Veeam, CommVault, VCE, Huawei, Ruckus Wireless and many others.
Our product focus is on our portfolio of leading global brands extending across multiple categories within the greater IT industry, as represented by our Stack. These include Client Computing, Hosted Solutions, Security, Software, Virtualisation, Storage, Servers, Networking and our very own cloud services brokerage, First for Cloud.
Our motto is “Helping Our Customers Help Their Customers” and we continually strive towards this goal by building close and trusted relationships with our business partners through our highly skilled personnel.
First Distribution’s vision is that it aims to be recognised as the first choice value-added distributor of leading global brands, providing complex ICT solutions to the Enterprise and SME markets, focused around the Data Centre, Virtualisation, Hosted Applications and Cloud Based Services, Database and Middleware, Security and Network Infrastructure, backed up by unparalleled expertise.
First Distribution has some core values at its heart which govern the way employees treat their work, their relationships with clients and customers, and their attitudes to each other. These are:
We stand accountable for the consequences of our actions, both positive and negative.
We are determined to give of our best in our jobs and work towards making First Distribution, our clients and our vendors, a success at all times.
We strive to work productively and in cooperation with each other, fostering a healthy atmosphere of mutual support, and in-turn allowing everyone to achieve their own work-related goals.
We are respectful towards each other in our words and our actions.
We are consistently honest and truthful in our dealings with each other, with our clients and with our vendors.
Where we feel free to enjoy our jobs, be creative and to enrich the working atmosphere within First Distribution
Debbie Abrahall – Managing Director
Managing Director of First Distribution, Debbie Abrahall has spent her career with the First Technology Group and has worked her way up through the company to her current position. Debbie joined Joffe and Associates in the Gauteng office at the age of 20, after which Joffe and Associates subsequently became Microdata, which was then bought by Epsidon Technology, and later renamed First Technology Holdings. Apart from a six month break in service with Panasonic Systems, Debbie has been with the company for 21 years and in her current role for the past 15 years.
Under her leadership, First Distribution has grown to be one of the leading value added distributors in South Africa with a first rate staff complement and senior management team, who have worked for Debbie cumulatively in excess of 50 years.
Tony Abrahall – Director
Tony Abrahall joined First Distribution in April 2008. After an aggressive acquisition drive to bring new vendors into First Distribution’s portfolio, the business was restructured to become more solutions-focused and Tony was appointed General Manager for Integrated Technology Solutions, responsible for Business Development and Sales.
Tony has a long career in the IT industry, and has made his mark in companies ranging from Lotus to IBM, where he achieved phenomenal success in leading and closing multi-million rand deals, penetrating new retail accounts and developing a strategic partner network for IBM’s Retail and Software businesses. Tony was on several occasions the recipient of the prestigious IBM EMEA Leadership Award, as well as the IBM EMEA General Manager’s Award for Excellence, Top Salesman Award and was selected to attend IBM’s Top Achiever Club on numerous occasions.
Kevin Derman – Director: Cloud & Hosting Solutions
As First Distribution’s General Manager for Cloud and Hosting, Kevin Derman currently heads up the First for Cloud brokerage, as well as overseeing all things cloud at First Distribution.
Kevin is a well-known and highly respected player in the local cloud industry, having previously headed up the partner business for Microsoft South Africa as well as IBM Sub-Saharan Africa.
He also co-founded Infointeg (now IntelliCred), an internet start-up, and is a motivational and business speaker.
Brett Stevens – General Manager: Africa
Born in Zimbabwe and raised in South Africa, Brett’s passion for the African continent has remained constant. After entering IT as a computer technician in 1992, Brett moved quickly into sales and business management from where he found his passion for building distribution businesses and sales channels throughout Africa.
Over the past 24 years Brett has worked with international vendors and multinational organisations, shaping and developing sustainable sales organisations and partner channels in Africa.
Prior to joining the First Distribution team, Brett spent seven years at WestconGroup as General Manager for Africa.
Malcolm Stewart – General Manager: Datacentre Solutions
Malcolm has spent his career in the ICT industry in various Marketing, Sales, Sales Management and Channel Management roles. Starting out in 1997, he worked for the local Hyperion (Oracle) distributor, and over the years he has held positions with various vendors, including Cognos, IBM & SAP. Prior to Joining FD, Malcolm ran the sales team for a software reseller and consulting firm focused on IBM, Oracle, Microsoft and a few other niche technologies. Having worked extensively with many resellers and vendors, he brings a wealth of experience to our business. Malcolm joined First Distribution as a Strategic Partner Executive in November 2016 and in June 2017 was promoted to General Manager of our Datacentre Business.
He also holds the position of Regional Executive for Gauteng.
Brad Stein – General Manager: Networking & Security
Brad started his career in IT over 10 years ago, when he joined Phoenix distribution as a Call centre agent.
Through dedication and a true drive for business, he worked his way up from Call centre to account manager – and later – sales manager within the same company. In 2016, he joined First Distribution as the company was undergoing a change in structure – a process in which he added great value and played a significant part. Brad has recently been appointed Head of the Networking & Security division at First Distribution.
First Distribution is a registered company within FTG.
In order to play a primary role in South Africa’s economy, FTG has constructed a BEE strategy that is extensive in its sustainable business development, while encouraging a positive influence over the PDI community. The primary objective is to achieve an employment profile within FTG that is a reflection of South Africa’s demographic ratio.
FTG is a level 2, AAA-rated BEE contributor.
Fully empowered in terms of Draft ICT Charter
Fully empowered in terms of Financial Services Charter
Committed to continual
FTG strategy is to train PDIs from the bottom, creating a solid foundation of professionalism and proficiency. The group has initiated programmes to develop internal skills. All technical staff are A+ certified, and candidates with greater potential are then moved towards an MCSE certification. FTG objective is to have all technical staff reflect the demographic percentages of South Africa. Currently 49% of FTG technical staff are classified PDI.
FTG also runs countrywide mentorship programmes on an individual level. These candidates interface with learning centres where they foster relationships with students.
Management development programmes are also implicated on a management level to curb the significant skills shortages. These programmes were specifically geared at FTG requirements for the industry.
FTG realises the role it has to play within the community. With our focus primarily on individual upliftment, we create the opportunity for people to take up a positive role within the community.
Programmes we have participated in to-date have included:
Group Partnering with BEE Organisations
FTG seeks out partnerships with specialised Black Empowerment companies that offer customers a comprehensive IT service. In the area of non-core business we have an objective of 75 % BEE companies being suppliers to the group, and we currently estimate our success in this endeavour at 63%.
FTG has undergone a number of audits from customers and government to confirm our BEE status, and all have been successful. Government has included FTG on the RT222, RT100 and Seat Management Services.
FTG has also been nominated by Impumelelo as one of the ‘Top 300 Empowerment Companies’ in the country. The IDC, Metrorail, the DTI and the Department of Agriculture all sponsor Impumelelo.
Because FTG strategies revolve around initiatives concerning people, community, business and legal areas, we implement a structured programme ensuring success in our various areas of commitment.
First Distribution is a multi-award winning distributor and has been highly recognised within the South African technology industry.
Over the years First Distribution has received the following vendor awards:
EMC Distributor of the Year
Huawei Best Distributor for the Mid Market
IBM Top Achiever
IBM Top SA Distributor
IBM Advanced Business Partner
IBM Top Distributor
IBM Top Software Distributor
IBM Top System x Distributor
IBM Global Technology Services
IBM Role Model Leadership
IBM Top STG Distributor
IBM Top RSS Distributor
IBM Top Storage Distributor
IBM Recognition of Enterprise Storage Skills
IBM Best Business Development in Middle East & Africa
IBM Choice Award for Growth and Transformation in Middle East & Africa
Microsoft MEA SPLAR Award for Fastest YOY Reach Growth
Microsoft SPLAR Award for Excellence in Execution
Microsoft Cloud Solution Reseller (CSR) SPLA Distributor
Veeam Top Distributor EMEA
VMware Top Distributor
VMware VSPP Aggregator of the Year