By Andy Slawetsky – There’s something about the Arizona landscape that sets the perfect scene for what was to be the latest gathering in the office equipment industry. As a seasoned observer of these events and an active participant in the industry, I can say the ACDI Partner Summit in Tempe was more than a meeting of minds; it was a display of the camaraderie and forward-thinking that propels us forward.

The summit kicked off with a casual but charged welcome reception against a backdrop that can only be described as quintessentially Arizona – vast, open, and inviting. As guests arrived, the atmosphere was electric with the anticipation of what’s become a hallmark of ACDI’s events: serious business intent mingled with an undeniable element of fun.

Day two brought the tempo up a notch with ACDI President Josh Lane setting the stage. Supported by seven partners, including key players like PaperCut, GreatAmerica, and Elatec, the day began with a great deal of energy.


Josh’s address touched on a point close to my heart: ACDI’s philanthropic efforts. Their ongoing support of The Jillian Fund and numerous other amazing charities underscores a culture of giving that I’ve witnessed firsthand on the Ride for Jillian fundraising rides – it’s a genuine commitment that’s been a privilege to be part of.

A highlight for me was the insightful dialogue between ACDI’s Mark Hart and Keypoint Intelligence’s Anthony Sci, as they unpacked the latest research findings on print management and cybersecurity in the SMB and cloud sectors. This discussion wasn’t just theoretical; it offered a glimpse into what our buyers are looking for and provided actionable insights for resellers.

The event’s informal ‘speed dating’ sessions fostered a spirit of learning and reconnection, proving that even in our tech-driven world, the value of face-to-face interactions cannot be overstated.

Next came the panel hosted by Patricia Ames of BPO Media and Mark Hart, featuring Jay Ryerse (ConnectWise) and Bryan Willett (Lexmark), which took us through the complex cybersecurity landscape. It was the kind of discussion that leaves you both enlightened and, quite frankly, a bit on edge – in a good way.

And then it was time for what can only be described as the most American experience imaginable. We were whisked away to a ranch for an evening of skeet shooting, quick-draw competitions, and horseback riding, topped off with a BBQ steak dinner that had all the trimmings of a Western movie set – saloon included.

It was an experience our international guests are sure to recount for quite some time.

While many played late into the night at the ranch, the following morning started off early with a panel, led by Mark Hart with industry leaders from ProSource, Stones Office Equipment, ImageNet Consulting, and GreatAmerica. This session offered another deep dive into the state of our industry.

An intriguing session with Mark and Steve Sumner from Lincoln Electric highlighted the crossroads of traditional manufacturing and modern technology, especially in the burgeoning EV Charging market – a potential game-changer for office equipment dealers looking to expand their horizons. ACDI is building a significant EV charging program with a variety of solutions that office technology dealers can resell as part of their own portfolios.

The Software Thought Leadership Panel featuring voices from Dave Farrell of PaperCut and Dimitri Moreau (KPAX) and Johann Fassbender (ScanShare), and the session with Josh Lane and Chris Dance, were as informative as they were international, emphasizing the global nature of our business.

Hosting their dealer partners in Arizona presented ACDI with a unique opportunity to delve into innovative solutions beyond their widely recognized PaperCut software.

With a spotlight on emerging areas like ScanShare and EV Charging Stations, the event offered a platform for partners to expand their expertise beyond traditional print management. Seamlessly blending education with networking, the summit proved to be both informative and enjoyable. A glance through the photos reveals what was undoubtedly one of the most engaging and valuable gatherings of the year.

SOURCE Industry Analysts Inc.