Dell Tells HP Partners: We’re Stable and Committed to PCs
Dell Global Channel Chief Greg Davis (pictured) has been on the phone with partners in recent days, discussing Hewlett-Packard’s decision to try and sell off or spin off its PC business. Based on that news, Dell is preparing to put some messaging out to HP partners. Here’s a preview.
During a multi-topic call with The VAR Guy today, Davis said Dell grew its channel business 24 percent in the most recent quarter compared to the corresponding quarter last year. Asked for Dell’s message to the channel amid HP’s change of direction, Davis didn’t take any direct shots at HP. But Davis did reach out to HP partners and Dell’s own PartnerDirect members with these thoughts:
“I think we’ve proven in the past three or four years that Dell can be a stable business partner for the channel. The PC business is strategic to Dell, the channel and for my business [Davis’s partner organization]. We intend to be in the PC market, and we intend to grow it. We’ll be consistent, stable and predictable. We don’t do everything perfect or right, but [PCs] is an area where we’ll continue to grow and invest.” Davis said more formalized messaging about Dell’s commitment to PC resellers could surface soon…
Among the other key topics Davis mentioned:
1. EqualLogic and Compellent: Dell completed the Compellent Technologies storage acquisition in February 2011. Dell has cross-trained EqualLogic storage partners on Compellent and vice versa. And so far, activity with Compellent is ramping faster than when Dell acquired EqualLogic, Davis said.
“The focus point for our channel business around the world has largely been around winning in the data center. We think we have a significant product advantage” with Compellent and EqualLogic, Davis asserted.
2. Cloud, Managed Services and Recurring Revenues: Dell is looking to organize multiple recurring revenue businesses into one partner program. The effort will likely involve a Cloud Infrastructure focus, potentially covering such Dell solutions as SecureWorks, Boomi, managed services and more. Dell hopes to unveil something later this year. “To be perfectly blunt,” conceded Davis, “we’ve been working on it and then got pulled into the Force 10 acquisition [process].” But Davis says he hopes to get the Cloud Infrastructure-type push in good shape for the end of this year.
3. Dell World: The first-ever Dell World (Oct. 12-14) conference will include invites to key channel partners. Some of the invites started going out this week. Similar to Dell’s recent Storage Forum conference, Davis says Dell World will offer partners the opportunity to mingle with end-customers during strategic sessions.
4. State of Dell in the Channel: Reiterating his opening points, Davis said Dell offers a consistent, stable partner program that’s growing faster than the industry. Training remains a big push; the company hosted 75,000 partner training sessions in 2010, and Dell is on track to double that figure in 2011.
For its part, HP has promised to continue investments in its PC organization and the SMB channel. The process of potentially selling off or spinning off HP’s PC business could require 12 to 18 months, HP has indicated.