final newsletter masthead
March 2010
In This Issue
Warranty and Service Abuse
AGMA in the News
AGMA Committees
Quick Links
Stay tuned for the next issue of Brand Sentinel where we'll spotlight trends, issues and more news from AGMA!
Government Affairs - In Focus 
Gavel - government
AGMA's Government Affairs Committee has been busy! In the past few months the committee worked with Monument Policy Group on a number of key initiatives.
Notably, on August 6, the Senate Finance Committee introduced S. 1631, the "Customs Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act of 2009."  This bill is designed to reprioritize the trade functions of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Agency (CBP) and the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency (ICE).  
Written testimony provided to the Senate Finance Committee on the subject introduced AGMA and its role in the IP community, commended the Senate Finance Committee for their work on this bill, and requested additional provisions important to AGMA members.  The Senate Finance Committee staff expressed that this testimony in support of their bill was greatly appreciated and that they would look into the proposed changes.
In the next few months, the committee will focus on the Senate Hearing on Customs and Border Protection (CBP) nominee - Alan Bersin; releasing of the AGMA Recommendations Outline to Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR); IPR Enforcement Comments for national strategy; and hearing on Customs Reauthorization legislation.
Dear Colleague,
Welcome to the March issue of the Alliance for Gray Market and Counterfeit Abatement (AGMA) Brand Sentinel. Our quarterly newsletter will keep you informed and connected with AGMA.  We'll keep you up-to-date on the issues and trends related to counterfeiting, gray market and warranty and service abuse in the high tech arena. We thank you for taking the time to view our newsletter - please let us know if there is anything we can do to make it even more valuable to you.


We hope you're off to a great start now that we're well into the New Year; we kicked off 2010 with our annual global member meeting, which was hosted by HP.  The meeting provided insights into best practices to mitigating gray market fraud, engaging and partnering with law enforcement agencies. Our board members and officers met to set objectives and establish new committees and budgets.
General Membership - What's New?

Welcome to our new members! IBM, Oracle and
Samsung have recently joined AGMA's ranks! The Board of Directors has seen some changes as well: Juniper Networks' Lorne
Morris and EMC's Tim Holland have been added to the Board.  In addition, Ram Manchi was re-elected President for another 3-year term and QLogic's Chris LaChapelle was elected Vice President

Industry Issue: Warranty and Service Abuse - A Threat to the IT Industry

Driven to remaining on the leading edge when it comes to industry issues, AGMA, in conjunction with PricewaterhouseCoopers, recently released a whitepaper on warranty and service abuse.  This white paper exposes a severe threat to the IT industry, and details how to spot it, where it comes from and how to effectively manage it. 


To download a copy of this whitepaper, please visit: Warranty and Service Abuse Whitepaper.


Stay tuned - AGMA is also working on partnerships with other leading consulting companies for future whitepapers.

AGMA in the News

Top tier publications continue to turn to AGMA for expert insight into gray market, counterfeiting, warranty and service abuse in the IT industry.  Just recently AGMA has been interviewed by and/or featured in such high profile media outlets as BusinessWeek, Politico and Forbes.


For example, in a BusinessWeek piece titled,
Fighting a Flood of Counterfeit Tech Products, Rachael King interviewed AGMA treasurer Peter Hlavnicka.  An opinion piece titled Debunking Common Myths about Counterfeits from Hlavnicka was also featured in BusinessWeek.


In Politico's study: Fake military parts on the rise, Jen DiMascio quotes AGMA president Ram Manchi: "Any business has an equal
opportunity to sign up as a vendor with the General Services Administration
once vendors are in the system...they have flexibility to sell almost anything to any agency. One can register for selling Scotch tape and sell network routers. Where the lowest-price bid drives the purchasing decision, the GSA process fails to keep out the fraudsters and criminals and exposes agencies to sources of substandard goods, including counterfeits."

AGMA Committees - Full Steam Ahead in 2010

In order to clearly define and focus its efforts in different areas, AGMA's Board of Directors has approved the expansion of AGMA's committees. The current committees are:

Operations Committee:
Focused on AGMA's day-to-day operations;
Government Affairs Committee:
Working with the Monument Policy Group focusing on Government relationships, AGMA's input on government legislative matters, inquiries and overall cooperation with the government;
Events Committee (new):
for the planning and execution of AGMA events;
Public Relations and Media Committee:
Cooperating with AGMA's PR firm (Lages & Associates) to promote AGMA's objectives and messaging, participating in media relations efforts, interviews, content, and commentary;
Education and Awareness Programs Committee (new):
Responsible for developing educational programs, industry awareness and certifications that support AGMA's objectives;
Memberships and Affiliations Committee:
Defining membership and promoting AGMA affiliations with other organizations.

Upcoming Events

AGMA APAC Council Meeting - March 11, Beijing China
AGMA Americas Quarterly Meeting - April 21-22 at Cisco in San Jose, Calif.

AGMA EMEA Council Meeting - May 6 at Microsoft in London, UK

AGMA Americas Quarterly Meeting - July 21-22 at EMC in Bedford, Mass.
AGMA APAC Council Meeting - September 9, HP in Singapore