Using go-to-market strategy for traction as solutions provider

Written by P P Thimmaya | Updated: Sep 2 2014, 06:14am hrs
Ever since Dell went private in October 2013, the technology giant has been rapidly evolving into a one-stop-place for all solutions encompassing hardware, software and IT services. In India, the company is getting some positive resonance from the marketplace for this new strategy, which is reflected in the growth rates during the first half of the calendar year, Dell India president and managing director Alok Ohrie tells PP Thimmaya in an interview. Excerpts:

How has the transition been for Dell since it went private in October 2013

We are truly a startup now. We are behaving like a startup globally as well as in India, and are a lot more empowered and encouraged to take bold steps. We are encouraging employees to be innovative and come out with creative ideas that can help quickly build credibility and status in the solutions space. In this rapidly evolving IT world, that is important for us in the long term. We have to change the way we engage in the market.

As a private company we can do things at a pace we still believe is right. We have embarked on a real important step of implementing a new go-to-market strategy to create traction as a solution provider. There is an urgency in execution to bring in a common play across our multiple business elements.

What changes does Dell India see in the marketplace

The way consumption is going on in IT, it is very different from that in the past. Most of the enterprises have automated their existing processes. Today they are asking what can be done next, which could give them the competitive edge in terms of innovative solutions be it cloud, big data or social. All these are opening up new opportunities. The challenge for IT vendors like us is to translate that concept into an executable project, and then provide end-to-end solution. Dell has been working on providing the entire stack of solutions.

Are you happy with the way growth in India is shaping up

It is extremely encouraging. The first half has been beyond our expectations. For example, in the server business, our market share growth was 8.3% at a time when the entire segment was growing in low single digits.

In storage, we grew 5.1% in terms of market share. In tablets, we entered late, but we are at the fifth position. Our software segment grew almost in triple digits year-on-year. We seem to have got the acceptance of our solution stack story. It is driving business across all categories.

The momentum has been good, though we have not been in this phase for very long as we have just started. Our reach has improved from 20-odd cities to almost 50. Going forward, we plan to reach 100 and then keep doubling it.

Can you elaborate on your expansion plan for India

Consumers like to touch and feel a product before they buy it. This is where physical retail becomes important.We have 250 exclusive Dell stores and we plan to take the number to 400 by the end of the year. When it comes to IT products, there will be co-existence of e-tail and brick-and-mortar retail for sometime because we are catering to various generations of buyers.

What innovative measures are you taking

We have built capabilities that go beyond PCs, notebooks and servers, and extended the ability to enterprises, infrastructure, software and services. We do not believe in locking up the customer. We are offering the

most advanced technology with efforts towards creating software-defined enterprises.