It’s been almost three years since Dell transitioned from a public listed company to a private one.
It’s been ten quarters in a row globally wherein we have grown our client share. This successive streak has happened for the first time in over a decade. This indicates that something different is happening in terms of our share. In the 11 quarter too, we are confident of continuing the momentum for a long time,” said Michael Dell, Chairman and CEO, Dell on a India visit.
Being a private company has certainly allowed us to focus our future more on 3 years, 5 years, 10 years and get away from short term orientation that public companies often find themselves in as per him. We are investing heavily in R&D, salesforce capacity, in our partner channels, he added.
There is role for public markets because when we went public in 1998 we needed the capital to grow at that stage as per him. After going private, we are able to create a structure that is highly streamlined and much focused on customers and the company has strong and predictable cash flow, he says.
Dell Business in past 15 years has had rather remarkable success growing over seven times as per him.
The Dell India story in FY 15 has been quite remarkable too . Last year, India business grew by 30% across all businesses, the highest growth in APJ and globally, said Dell. The last quarter in India has been great as the company achieved 39% of market share in microprocessor based server in India, 48% share in high end workstations and 35% share in notebooks (all being number one position) across all three categories, he added.
Today Dell in India operates from twenty two buildings across eight cities with over 28000 people in Dell family in India. Dell India has a new go-to-market business model; to maximize customer coverage, deepen engagement and provide superior customer experience. Channel Partners also played a key role in Dell’s India Business success story with close to 50 percent of Dell revenue coming from Channel or Indirect route.
Besides strong momentum in the commercial business, Dell witnessed a good uptake in our consumer business. “Almost 10% of the 240 million households in India has PCs which compares to 35% in china and 64% in Malaysia. Hence there is tremendous growth in PC market in India in the years to come,” he said.
For consumer business, Dell would have 825 Dell exclusive stores by year end from the present number of 600. “That’s a fairly rapid rate as these stores will cover 600 plus cities across India. Currently Dell business in India is growing four times than overall market rate, says Michael Dell.
The participation rate in the last Tell Dell – an employee team member survey was the highest in past fourteen years. “We measure the rates carefully to make ourselves a better company by listening to our team members. We also had the highest ever scores in fourteen years. The only time it was close to this level was the prior year after we went private.” he said.
“The privatization has ignited our teams as we continue investing in our future, investing in our teams, growing our shares, making fast decisions faster. All of it has resulted in the workforce that feels empowered and excited and it is not distracted by day to day changes of company’s stock prices,” he said about the merits of tech companies going private.
“It is lot easier running a private company. About 20% of my time has been freed up to which I am able to spend time on customers, products, team members,” says Michael Dell.
A typical public company has the increasing pressure from activist investors, pundits who quantify and suggest on the future course of those companies according to Dell. You might actually feel some external forces have control on your life and after a while it could become quite depressing, he says.
Today for Dell as a private company all the investments on innovation, customer focus, innovation, and leadership are completely aligned with no gaps in between with no external forces trying to change the outcome, he says. It is actually highly motivating for the people inside the company whether they have been there for a day or quarter of a century as per him.
“The activist investors are showing up at every public company no matter how large or small. We find ourselves in a good position with no downsides as a privately held company,” said Michael Dell.
Yogesh Gupta is executive editor at IDG Media. You can reach him at email@example.com or follow @yogsyogi1