Dell Fires Back at HP with Services OffensiveBy Stan Gibson | Posted 2002-10-09 Email Print
Online exclusive: A day after HP's Fiorina scoffed at Dell's printer plans, Michael Dell told the crowd at Gartner's gathering that his company plans to turn up the heat on professional services.
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla.Don't look now, Carly Fiorina: Michael Dell is taking aim at the other heart of your business.
A day after the chairwoman of Hewlett-Packard Co. said Dell Computer's plan to enter the printer business "doesn't send us shaking in our boots," the namesake and founder of Dell said his company planned to bring the same kind of efficiencies to the provision of professional services as it has to the delivery of hardware and software.
"Dell will innovate in services, creating a new kind of services model," the now-37-year-old chief of an 18.5-year-old computer manufacturer and services seller said in an on-stage interview at the Gartner Symposium/ITxpo here.
That model will include:
All of which will be delivered at lower cost than competitors, such as Hewlett-Packard. Dell noted that his company's operating expenses in the second quarter were 10 percent of its $8.5 billion in revenue.
Actually, the figure reported by the company was 9.9 percent, matching the company record set in the first quarter. That is half the rate at Hewlett-Packard. The Palo Alto, Calif., computer maker and services competitor said that, in its third quarter, pro forma operating expenses were up sequentially from 21.0% to 22.5% of its revenue of $16.5 billion.
These results reflect the combination of HP with Compaq Computer of Houston, which it absorbed. HP Services, which include support, consulting, integration and so-called "managed services," reported third-quarter revenue of $3.0 billion, down 7% from a year ago.
Nonetheless, that is nearly four times the size of Dell's services business, which its chief executive pegged at $3.5 billion a year, or 10 percent of overall annual revenue. But Dell said he expects to lower cost, drive efficiency and still make a profit.
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