Dell resellers have hailed yesterday's privatisation of the firm a success, and hope the move will spark a wave of investment in new tech for the channel.
At the start of the year, Michael Dell announced his intent to take the firm he founded back into private ownership and, yesterday, a shareholder vote granted his wish. The road to privatisation was not without its bumps though, as investor Carl Icahn did his best to thwart the plans before eventually giving up earlier this week.
Alastair Kitching, chief operating officer at Dell Premier partner Esteem, said: "I had dinner with [Michael Dell] a few weeks back at a partner event, and the obvious question to ask was ‘why are you doing it?'," Kitching said. "He wants to do things he can't do as a public company and in terms of relations with the channel, and I got the genuine feeling that he is 100 per cent behind a substantial indirect business and that he sees real value in the channel.
"If the things he wants to do when [the firm] is private are aligned to channel growth, it can only be a good thing."
Preferred partner Vohkus' commercial and marketing director Loay Lawrence agreed, and said the firm has made good progress towards embracing the channel, and the situation will get better still by being taken private.
"Dell is committed to the channel now, which is a strange thing to say – so this is quite good news," he said. "Now he's taken it private he can control the channel, which will become his sales force.
"They have been gradually changing over the past three or four years and have become more channel friendly, and this will only enhance that – and quickly too."
Last year, Dell announced that in EMEA its channel was bigger than its direct business.
Sam Routledge, solutions director of Dell Premier reseller Softcat, said he expects it to be business as usual for the channel but that he thinks the deal will free Dell up to invest in new technology.
Vohkus' Lawrence agreed and added: "Dell is absolutely able to invest in other technology now. They've gone down the acquisition trail and have got an end-to-end solution.
"Their weak point is probably printers but they have everything else under their belt so from an enterprise perspective, with their strategy to work with the channel, they could make real inroads."
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