By Claire Reilly
Uniden’s national sales manager responsible for the company’s Dick Smith and wholesale accounts has announced he will be stepping down from his role. Tony Pischedda spoke to Current.com.au today to confirm that he will take an extended leave of absence from the company.
The announcement comes after former national sales manager for retail, Peter Whipps, announced he would be retiring from his position. Whipps and Pischedda worked side by side in the dual sales manager roles and between them have 41 years experience at the company.
“Both me and Peter Whipps shared the role,” said Pischedda. “Peter’s responsibility was looking after the retail section, so he was dealing with the major retailers such as Harveys and Myer, David Jones, Officeworks and so on. And I looked after Dick Smith, a major account with the company, as well as the wholesale arm of the business. That’s how we split it up so we could all concentrate on doing our thing.”
Pischedda has been with the company for 27 years, and has held the role of national sales manager “from day one”. He joined the team when the company was an agent for Uniden, known as Santronics, before it was sold to become a local subsidiary of the Uniden brand.
Speaking to Current.com.au, Pischedda said he was proud of the growth Uniden had seen since he first started working with the company.
“When we started to bring in these products called ‘cordless phones’, we were a no-name brand basically,” he said. “We’ve increased the brand over that period of time, from 0 per cent to seeing the growth in the market that we now hold 57 per cent market share in Australia, and over 63 per cent market share – probably even higher – in New Zealand.
“We’ve also seen an increase in our UHF business. Back in the early days again we were probably a no-name brand. GME was the number one brand at that time, and Philips. But we’ve seen our market share grow so we’ve probably got 50 to 60 per cent market share in that market.”
The succession plan for the company has already been organised with two sales people from the company stepping up to take on Pischedda and Whipps’ roles.
“This has been on the cards for quite a while and while it was a hard decision to make we’ve been grooming two of our sales people. One is Vic Sacco, he’s now taken the role of Peter Whipps, so he’ll be in charge of all retail operations. The other gentleman is Marcello Cordeschi, and he’ll be taking my role. So that’ll be the new team working together.
“In the mean time, although Peter Whipps has left, he will be coming back on in an advisory role for the next 3 months just to help also guide the guys a bit more. And I’m going in on a need to be basis, so they can ring me anytime and I’ll go in.”
Pischedda also confirmed that Uniden had left the door open, giving him the opportunity to rejoin the company in the future.