As we celebrate the start of 2018, it seems only right to briefly look back at last year. 2017 was a landmark year for the Dell EMC OEM organization. In December, we celebrated a major milestone – our OEM global sales hit the $3 billion mark for the first time. Earlier last year, thanks to our customers and partners – we achieved the hard-won status of #1 OEM Provider worldwide.[i] We’ve had some incredible successes over the past 12 months and I’d like to take a moment to express my appreciation.
To our OEM customers who place their trust in us to help bring their ideas to market, thank you! To the partners who support our business and augment our capabilities, we are grateful for your partnerships. And to the Futuremakers, who are using the Dell Technologies portfolio to drive real progress for businesses and humankind, we salute you. By forging new paths in uncharted territories like IoT, artificial intelligence, and machine learning, you are truly making a difference in your industries and around the world. We are honored to play a role in your achievements. And now for some of the key highlights during 2017…
- In February, as we officially launched the Dell EMC Partner Program, we integrated our OEM Partners into the greater partner ecosystem to give them a more Simple. Predictable, Profitable,™ experience. Utilizing this new OEM track within the greater Partner Program, our OEM partners are now eligible to receive over 5x more rebates than in the prior year. And our OEM partners have access to new tools and resources that make it easier for us to work together.
- In May, coinciding with Dell EMC World for the first time, we hosted our OEM Summit – where over 150 customers and partners experienced the full Dell Technologies eco-system, while also benefiting from OEM-centric content and great networking opportunities with peers and the OEM team.
- This was followed in July with the launch of our 14th generation PowerEdge servers. Many of our OEM customers are already on the leading edge of technology with demanding workloads that require extraordinary performance so it’s no surprise that they value 14G capabilities like increased processing performance with Skylake CPUs, increased support for offload/acceleration technologies, and the added storage performance with increased NVMe.
- In September, we marked the first anniversary of the Dell EMC merger with our company now ranked as the largest privately-controlled technology company on the planet.
- Fast forward to October – when we unveiled our new IoT strategy in New York City. Michael Dell announced an investment of more than $1 billion in IoT R&D over the next three years – plus a new, dedicated Dell Technologies IoT Division.
- In December, we announced the small but mighty XR2 server – designed for tight spaces or tough conditions needing a lot of compute power. Finally, as a great wrap up to the year, we were honored to make CRN’s 2017 list of the 15 Coolest IoT Hardware Companies for our edge Gateways and Embedded PCs.
So, with all these 2017 accomplishments, how will this New Year stack up? Apart from celebrating OEM’s 20th year anniversary, my prediction is that it’s going to be an amazing period, when we enter the next era of human-machine partnerships. We will increasingly embrace AI, and see the blurring of ‘real’ reality and augmented reality coupled with the emergence of the mega cloud.
I believe that IoT is now at a critical inflection point – where companies can drive real economic value, moving from proof of concept to a technology that makes sense to adopt. In 2018, expect IoT to go mainstream and become “real.”
I wrote about digital disruption last year. We all know that it’s not going away. In fact, IDC predicts that another 33% of industry leaders will be displaced before the end of 2018.[ii] I know this sounds scary but the digital opportunity is real and the rewards are rich for those who can navigate the transition. In my book, every company in every industry should be on a journey to transform their business and create a new digitally-enabled operating model. And the good news is we’re here to help!
What Won’t Change?
Of course, some things won’t change. We will continue to invest heavily in customer and partnership relationships with an emphasis on making it easier for us to do business together. We will continue to launch new products and improve our services, tools, and processes.
In 2017, we concentrated on how to combine Dell and EMC while providing a smooth transition for our customers and partners. With a successful merger behind us, we now have the opportunity to dive into the details and execute on the plays within the plays. While we have more to do, I love our trajectory and believe that we have the portfolio, experience, and drive to help our customers win.
On a personal level, I have had the pleasure of leading the OEM and IoT Solutions Division for the last five years and will now also take on responsibility for the Dell EMC Global Channel business. The OEM Solutions business has been a part of the Partner program for more than a year, therefore I’m very familiar with the team and looking forward to this new challenge.
I’d love to hear your comments and predictions about 2018. In the meantime, wishing you and your business continued success. Here’s to the year ahead!
[i] OEM Global Share based on 2016 Dollar Volume Shipments, VDC Research