Advanced Computing in the Age of AI|Tuesday, October 20, 2020
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Michael Dell Talks EMC, Hybrid Cloud, PCs at Dell World 

Michael Dell (l) and Satya Nadella (r) take center stage at Dell World. (Source: EnterpriseTech)

A week after Dell acquired EMC, the Texas company's premier client event resonated with its emphasis on end-to-end devices, customer-centric solutions, and building for the future.

"Dell is set to become an enterprise solutions powerhouse," said Michael Dell, chairman and chief executive officer at Dell told CIOs and business executives in a keynote today. "We are set to build the world's infrastructure for the next 20, 30 years. You're going to cure cancer. You're going to feed the world. We have the vision, the infrastructure, and the horsepower to help you dream that big."

From tablets and sensors to high performance computers and hybrid cloud, Dell's offerings span the gamut of enterprise (plus consumer and SMB needs), he said. Now, coupled with the EMC family of solutions in areas such as virtualization, storage, and security, the new $80-billion entity's capabilities have grown exponentially, Dell said.

"We believe a Dell/EMC combination offers unique value which is good for Dell, good for EMC and very good for each of you, and all of it under a private company structure, investing for the long-term, no 90-day clock shop, complete alignment from our investments in R&D to our executives and ownership completely focused on you," he added.

This is contrary to Hewlett-Packard CEO Meg Whitman's widely shared email to employees, in which she slammed the $67-billion acquisition. In that missive, Whitman said HP was two years ahead of Dell and that Dell must pay back about $2.5 billion annually in interest.

During a press conference, Michael Dell responded to Whitman's statements: "I think VMware is a great HP partner. I have no other comment."

Dell is gambling that enterprises' futures lie within the hybrid cloud (see Dell and Microsoft Partner on Hybrid Cloud). And the company denied any suggestion its private-cloud moves will impinge on partners' business.

"We believe the hybrid cloud will rule supreme," said Dell. "Being future ready doesn't mean just ripping and replacing infrastructure. It means building a deliberate bridge."

Part of that bridge means partnerships such as the long-standing relationship between Microsoft and Dell. But like many in the computing industry, there are areas where the two developers compete – think tablets. Despite that, both executives described the companies as "friends."

"At the core we are friends," said Satya Nadella, Microsoft CEO. "But what is the friendship about? At the core it's about serving our customers. You have to live their reality. It can't be about geopolitics or industry. That's what drives relevance and success."

Despite Dell's extended focus on datacenters, cloud, Internet of Things, and other sophisticated solutions, the company remains true to its PC roots, Dell insisted. The company operates about 12,000 Dell-only retailers in China alone, he said. With at least 600 million aging PCs in the market today, the time is ripe for consumers and businesses to upgrade – and Dell does not plan to leave the opportunity to its competitors.

"PCs are core to our strategy and we are not leaving the PC business," said Dell. "We are giving people a lot of reasons to upgrade and we have been working closely with Microsoft on Windows 10 for years. In the last quarter we outgrew our PC competitors, including HP and Lenovo."

About the author: Alison Diana

Managing editor of Enterprise Technology. I've been covering tech and business for many years, for publications such as InformationWeek, Baseline Magazine, and Florida Today. A native Brit and longtime Yankees fan, I live with my husband, daughter, and two cats on the Space Coast in Florida.

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