What is an Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM)?

An original equipment manufacturer or OEM is a company that produces and sells products or parts of a product that the buyer, another company, sells to its customers by placing the products under its own brand. OEMs typically operate in the automotive and IT industries. An OEM is typically the direct customer of a retail company that sells direct to consumers. For example, Dell does not make all the parts for a Dell laptop or Computer. Some parts, like the processor or memory module, are maybe an OEM product.

Original Equipment Manufacturer vs. Aftermarket

While an original equipment manufacturer makes original equipment, an aftermarket manufacturer, on the other hand, makes products that are interchangeable in appearance and function with those of the original equipment manufacturer. In simpler terms, the parts are not genuine products as they are manufactured by domestic or foreign-based companies without the authorization of the OEMs to manufacture such products. Although the products are generally cheaper, they are not guaranteed to perform as well as the OEM product.

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