||Game Changer The channel strategy has paid off big time for Dell, and might have even forced HP to change its distribution game plan Someone once said—revenge is a dish best served cold. For Dell, it’s been sweet revenge that has come after an agonizingly long wait. For one, it was a late entrant in India and even then it was relegated to the wings while HP stole the limelight. The tables were turned two years back when Dell went the indirect way and courted channel partners . The move paid off well as it consistently gained market share. And a tacit acknowledgement of its success has now come from none other than HP which re-organized its channel strategy in FY10—by doing away with national distributors and focusing on tie-ups with tier-2 distributors for increasing reach in tier-2 and -3 cities. With the global restructuring of business to adopt a customer centric approach, Dell India unveiled its SMB strategy combining its consumer and SMB channels under one person to drive the reach. Around 200 partners were also signed for focusing on the SMB segment and a SMB specific product range was introduced. It also tied up with the department of Science & Technology’s National Science and Technology Entrepreneurship Development Board for the SME Technology & Mentorship Forum, providing a platform for SMEs to obtain strong academic insights and real life experiences from experts. Not satisfied with being just a systems pusher, Dell acquired Perot Systems with the intent to strengthen its foothold in the IT services industry. While the acquisition would offer a broader range of services and solutions to Dell customers, it would also enable cross-selling of Dell products to Perot customers. For Dell India, venturing in services would complete the solutions story. Post acquisition, Dell is looking to make India a delivery hub and grow in the healthcare and education domains by offering customized products and services. It has added servers to its manufacturing unit in Tamil Nadu and in OND of 2009, the plant crossed the million units mark. For Sameer Garde and his team, FY11 will be a year when Dell India will look to become an open, nimble and automated solutions provider targeting the mid-market in designing solutions, but at the same time Garde will also strive to protect and grow Dell’s bread-and-butter—the consumer desktop business.
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