American technology major Dell Technologies is betting on strategic areas like edge computing, multi-cloud, and the as-a-service model. Dell plans to expand its notebook production in India and is also looking at more manufacturing opportunities in the country. Ramesh Jampula, vice president (IT) India and APJC Regional CIO, Dell Technologies, talks about the opportunities in India, technology focus areas, and demand environment, in an interview with Ayushman Baruah. Excerpts.
What are some of the top technologies Dell will be focusing on in 2023?
The digital transformation process is accelerating across industries due to rising business complexities, groundbreaking innovations, and rapidly shifting customer preferences. A lot of amazing results are being driven by customers, as evidenced by the current demand. At Dell, we are looking for new ways of working, learning, and living with technology as the enabler. We are focused on key six strategic technologies such as multi-cloud, edge, 5G, artificial intelligence/ machine learning (AI/ML), data management, and cybersecurity to enable end-to-end, modern IT systems for future.
What is Dell’s strategy to tap into the as-a-service model?
Organisations globally are going digital to modernise operations and foster innovation. IT leaders want technology solutions that make work easier, offer the most flexibility, and empower them to run their business on their terms. So, enterprises have increasingly turned to as-a-service models to gain the agility and cost predictability required to stay competitive amid unpredictable circumstances. Dell Technologies has recently launched Project APEX, a portfolio of as-a-service offerings that simplifies digital transformation by increasing IT agility and control.
APEX is a radically simplified technology experience, delivering as-a-service infrastructure wherever it is needed… Our capabilities and competitive advantages allow us to grow, win and create value for our stakeholders, even in uncertain times. We are focused on what we can control — execution, relative performance, prudent cost management, and delivering for customers. This allows us to invest in new growth opportunities like as-a-service, telecom, and edge.
What’s driving growth for Dell Technologies in the India market?
We believe that going forward, multi-cloud and as-a-service model will take centre stage for every industry’s digital transformation and represent the future which will be the foundation for this data centric world. As cloud offerings have evolved, enterprises have increasingly adopted multiple cloud services rather than relying on a single cloud provider.
These multi-cloud environments enable organisations to pick and choose among best-of-breed solutions as they decide where applications and workloads should be run… At Dell Technologies, we are helping governments, companies and communities to move to work and learn from home arrangements and paving the way for economies to leverage growth in new sectors involving multi-cloud, edge and telecom.
Is Dell planning to shift more manufacturing to India?
Dell Technologies already has manufacturing in India, and we have been here for more than a decade. We recently signed an agreement to expand our notebook production in India and are participating in India’s Production Linked Incentive (PLI) and Preferred Manufacturing in India (PMI) programmes. Going forward, we will continue to investigate additional manufacturing opportunities in India that make sense to our business and our customers.
Do you see a slowdown in demand for IT given the Russia-Ukraine conflict and an impending recession in Europe?
IT demand is certainly moderating globally, and we have observed that with the customers as well. There is more caution entering these challenging environments. Customers are putting more scrutiny on every dollar and asking for a trusted partner for their digital transformation journey in these uncertain times. In fact, technology investments right now are in many ways the solution to the challenges — high inflation, workforce shortages — that are being experienced macroeconomically. However, in the medium and long term at Dell, we continue to be bullish on our market.
What’s your take on India’s new digital Data Protection Bill?
The new Digital Personal Data Protection Bill is only one of the pieces that form part of a larger policy vision for the entire digital economy. It focuses on personal data, in comparison to the previous model. The Bill has relaxed regulations on cross-border data flows, which may provide relief to IT firms, as well as a provision for easier compliance requirements for startups.