DSA was cordially invited to a sumptuous lunch sit down with Dell EMC at Zuan Yuan Chinese Restaurant, One World Hotel, here yesterday. We were joined by KT Ong, Country Manager - Commercial, Sumash Singh, Infrastruction Solutions, South Asia & Korea and Yasir Yousuff, Senior Director – Field & Partner Marketing South East Asia and Emerging Markets.
KT Ong, as emcee, welcomed the media to the luncheon in a post Chinese New Year setting. He then described his role at Dell EMC as country manager and gave a quick introduction to Sumash Singh and Yasir Yousouf.
KT spoke a little on how Dell EMC are a strong value proposition for their customers in what they are able to offer from the edge for the individual, to the data centre and to the cloud.
“We have a comprehensive solution for all kinds of customers from the start-up to the small and medium business right up to a large enterprise, either public or private sectors,” he said adding that PC will continue to be an important part of the business.
Sumash then took the floor to share what the future horizon will look like for Dell EMC and their customers. Hailing from South Africa and celebrating his first year in Malaysia, Sumash went on to say that Asia represents a huge opportunity to the worldwide economy.
“Digital Transformation is at the forefront of what the Asian market is about. We are creating knowledge economies in this region that’s been spurred on by Digital Transformation where Dell EMC is also at the forefront of.” He says they are in a unique position to assist companies meet the technology and human progress intersections.
“We represent the best of what technology can deliver to any customer, be it consumer based products all the way to the customer of a large organisation who is looking to move to cloud and embrace cloud options,” he said.
With over 60% of the Malaysian population today being internet savvy, he says, who consistently use 3G and 4G bandwidth quality, proves that people are merging their personal and corporate lives, expecting the same quality of service from both areas. With that expectation set, Dell EMC who bring together multiple number ones in their solutions to the customer from storage to converged infrastructure and cloud based systems are able to fulfil those needs.
Yasir, who has spent the last 8 years in Malaysia, was then invited to the floor and believes his move to Dell EMC would be a great opportunity to make an impact in the industry.
“We are in the consumer or retail segment, the commercial space and also in the enterprise space. Dell has been very strong in the consumer and commercial side and EMC has a strong position in enterprise and higher end customers, having deep relationships and making sure mission critical data is running from the biggest banks to the biggest telcos depending on EMC provided solutions.”
He believes the merger is very complimentary through the products from both sides where the portfolio of digital transformation and IT transformation with very strong innovated products.
“We are not reliant only on services and we do not believe in breaking ourselves up but we actually believe that customers want choice and at the same time the best of breed while dealing with lesser vendors,” he says.
Though admittedly the PC market has been declining, he believes it is far from being eradicated completely and so they will continue to differentiate and innovate with their products.
He added that Malaysia is a very important market to them and is one of the top 5 locations for Dell worldwide in terms of the number of employees. They are committed to the local market and they are also supportive of the Malaysian government and look forward to helping the growth of the country in that area.
When he took his seat after the introduction, we asked Yasir what strategies were in place for overlapping products in core technologies especially between EMC VNX and Dell SC and PS series. He says although the product strategies have not been finalised yet, they are focusing their efforts in the way they go to market by aligning their products to customer segments.
“What we have done internally is we have combined and created on storage and data protection team. Earlier there were multiple divisions and hence multiple products. So within those teams we will look at segmentation and tiering, which means for high end workloads and product sets what would be the customer needs. These are still a work in progress,” he said.
He however made it clear that existing customers of both products will continue to be supported and they will make sure that customer investments are protected and there will be a clear roadmap should there be consolidation and a road map for the growth for the future as well.
Sumash says they will continue to protect customers’ needs and will marry the right technologies and where appropriate, they will continue to utilise tape as a viable contingent for customers who don’t have a lot of high stringent compliance requirements to keep data.
He said this to a question on how in the past EMC has been quite vocal that they don’t believe in tape whereas Dell is one of the largest suppliers of LTO Tape libraries.
“There will be a period where we will rationalise the right technology choices of customers based on their immediate choices and requirements,” says Sumash.
Yasir added that when the two companies come together it’s a good fit where they are able to merge both segments of the customer needs and deliver what the required optimal option will be at the time.
To a question on how Dell EMC are dealing with retaining staff in Malaysia as there was some evidence of staff leaving the company, Yasir was quick to point out in jest that 2 EMC personnel are represented at that luncheon.
His experience in seeing mergers and acquisitions, Dell EMC are trying to keep the people together as best they can and build a culture of amalgamation of both cultures.
“In spite of that, some people might decide to do something else and mergers are always a good inflection point for people to think about what else they want to do in life and we find that perfectly understandable,” he said.
He added that EMC had a unique approach in retaining much of the cultures and personnel of companies they acquire and merge with.
“Even looking at the name that we have Dell and EMC we didn’t get rid of the EMC brand and retained which is very different to other companies and we are very committed to retaining people,” he added.