Dell: Triumphs and Challenges
DEll's customers may need the company's guidance to exploit the next generation of computing.Its becoming routine: while the majority of it hardware vendors announce losses, mask weak sales, merge or get out of the business, Dell announces strong sales growth. The company did that two weeks ago when it announced that revenues would be up 22 percent over the same quarter a year ago. Since its founding a little more than 18 years ago, the company that now ranks 53rd on the Fortune 500 has sought to sell standards-based equipment of high quality at a low price. When Chairman and CEO Michael Dell addressed the recent Gartner Symposium in Orlando, Fla., he said that approach was part of the companys "DNA." If Dell has succeeded where others have failed, its because it has remained true to its DNAit has never tried to be something it is not, despite the recurrent prodding of kibitzers in the analyst community.
Now, however, Dell is embarking on new initiatives that look on the surface to be fundamentally different from "Dell DNA" sorts of things: embracing Linux, preparing to make handhelds, entering the printer market, selling "white boxes" through the channel, building a services business and not toeing the Intel line when it comes to processor direction on Itanium.