Although still early into the Dell EMC company integration, Dell Technologies’ 2018 fiscal year Q1 financials, reported a couple of weeks ago, were reasonable with consolidated revenue of $17.8 billion along side an operating loss of $1.5 billion.
That said, Dell has paid down about $7.1 billion in gross debt since the EMC acquisition last year.
Cheryl Cook, senior vice president of global channel marketing, took a turn at focusing on the news from the partner angle, reiterating the company’s commitment to its partners around trust.
Looking at the financial results from some of the company’s strategic initiatives, she pointed to the 17th straight quarter of gains in the PC/client space, noting that as the market segment continues to contract, Dell outpaces it.
According to Dell Technologies, first quarter revenue was $9.1 billion for both commercial and consumer product categories in the Client Solutions Group — that’s up 6 percent year over year.
The vendor’s x86 servers helped the company stay the worldwide market-share leader with PowerEdge units and revenue growth up by double digits in the fiscal quarter. Just last month, Dell EMC introduced the 14th generation of its PowerEdge Servers.
“The channel is contributing greatly to that performance,” Cook shared with us. “I’m so proud of our team; our partner resources and theirs are just delivering phenomenal results on our first fiscal quarter under the unified [partner] program,” she added.
Cook went on to note that Dell EMC continues to see strong double-digit growth in the channel, although she declined to give numbers. Deal registrations were also up by double digits and some of the strategic company pillars accentuated in the partner program, such as services and services-attach rates, again hit double-digit growth, while driving new business and the cross-sell opportunities are also seeing good growth momentum, she outlined. Likewise, partners showed that they’re also focusing on line-of-business (LOB) expansion within client businesses.
“We pulled our programs and teams together, launched it,and now we’re in execution mode,” said Cook.
With strong growth, partners reaped the benefits of increased rebates and MDF payouts.
Cook reminded us about the recently launched client business incumbency, in addition to the line of business incumbency, which means if the channel brings in new business in the client space, it continues to be protected as a partner-led sales motion. She noted the initiative was well received in the partner community.
On the direct sales side, Dell EMC is enforcing fidelity and predictability in its rules of engagement. Cook noted that the company had to take have action to terminate individuals on both sides of the isle – direct and partner sides – around deal-registration violations or less than honorable behavior.
The launch of the company’s Marketing Institute in May, as well as a marketing platform, has also gotten early positive feedback from the 2,000 partners embracing it. The marketing platform provides partners with social content, digital content, modular assets, and the ability to leverage a full campaign portfolio or modules that they can co-brand.
“The Marketing Institute is where we’re seeing partners come in and take curriculum and training – beyond MDF policies and guidance – … but it’s really building out their capabilities and we’ll continue to build it out over time with curriculum around the power of digital marketing, what we can do around search and social, and what we can do to be more self-reliant and self-sufficient,” Cook said.
Cook acknowledges some partner complaints about data migration and other challenges associated with merging two company teams and programs, but told us that most were pretty understanding of it all.