It’s good to be Michael Dell right now. Dell’s founder and chairman took the stage Wednesday morning at Dell World in Austin, Texas, beaming about his company’s prospects in regards to last week’s deal to buy EMC for $67 billion.
“I’m so excited,” he said. “In fact, I’m thrilled that we have a definitive agreement to acquire EMC. I started this company 32-years ago just a few blocks from here in my dorm room building PCs. As I speak to you today, with this agreement in place, Dell is set to become an enterprise solutions powerhouse.”
Dell referred to the deal with EMC, which is the largest to date in the technology sector, as a “dream combination” that will deliver an “unprecedented combination of capabilities to current and future customers.” While some experts have questioned whether EMC’s culture will fit with Dell’s, Michael Dell provided assurances.
“We compliment each other beautifully,” he said. “We bring together the world’s greatest franchises in technology today; leaders in servers, storage, virtualization and PCs. No one is more relevant or able to add more value, and we bring together the industry’s next generation solutions.”
Dell said the combined company, with annual revenues expected to exceed $80 billion, would be committed to helping small and medium-sized business and enterprises work toward their digital transformations across software-defined data centers, converged infrastructure, hybrid cloud, mobile and security.
“EMC is the best company in the industry at incubating technology, and we plan to mirror the EMC approach of a strategically aligned family of businesses,” Dell said.
Michael Dell took his company private two years ago, and privately held Dell/EMC will allow it to work for the long term, without “a 90-day shot clock,” he said. Dell cited a Fortune survey in which 84 percent of CEOs found it easier to manage a private company.
“Or as I like to say: EMC, $67 billion. Being master of your own destiny, priceless,” Dell said to laughter and applause.
It’s not like Dell is sitting on its laurels while the EMC deal closes, which is slated to happen sometime between May and October of next year. Michael Dell spent time during his Wednesday morning keynote hyping new Dell products, services, and updates, but EMC, as well as EMC’s majority-owned VMware, was a recurring theme.
Data Center Storage. Dell has a storage business — including the introduction Monday of the company’s new flagship Dell Storage SC9000 storage array controller — but is now adding EMC. Michael Dell addressed this mainly by saying the combined businesses would achieve even bigger levels of greatness.
Digital Transformation. With the proliferation of smart cars, smart devices, and smart sensors driving the Internet of Things, in conjunction with the move to private and hybrid clouds, customers need to keep track of all BYOD and company devices through analytics in real time, Dell said. Through EMC, Dell customers would be able to tap into EMC’s Pivotal Cloud Foundry platform-as-a-service and would have access to EMC’s Pivotal Labs, which Dell said has assisted practically every successful web scale company in Silicon Valley, to help them with software development projects.
Virtustream. On Tuesday, EMC and VMware that they would jointly own Virtustream, which EMC acquired in July. Dell referred to Virtustream several times while on stage in Austin, but he didn’t comment on yesterday’s news. After joining Dell onstage, Javier Polit, CIO of The Coca-Cola Company’s Bottling Investments Group, said that Virtustream was a disrupting technology that allowed his company to monitor shipments and consumption of power, among other benefits.
Teaming Up With Microsoft
Michael Dell, along with Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, also announced the Cloud Platform System Standard. The converged offering combines services, software, and storage on one box that can connect to Microsoft Azure. Customers that are building out hybrid cloud environments can rent Cloud Platform System Standard, which runs a similar software stack that Microsoft uses in its public cloud, from Dell for $9,000 a month.
Michael Dell also addressed a question about whether the deal with EMC puts his company in more direct competition with Microsoft’s cloud offerings, and whether Microsoft’s recent launch of Surface Book laptops and tablets competes with Dell’s offerings. Dell said he was a big proponent of Windows 10, and that “it’s important to understand that customers want choices.” Dell sees the Surface Book laptops and tablets as icebreakers, after which “we’re coming in with the product at volume,” since Dell is a reseller of Microsoft’s Surface Pro tablet.
Photo courtesy of Dell.