These moves are part of a strategy outlined by Gateway to make itself a stronger presence in the enterprise. Chairman and CEO Ted Waitt wants to move the company away from being simply a PC maker to being a company that can offer customers a wide range of Gateway-branded products, from servers to mobile devices to services. Gateway is trying to make a mark in a highly-competitive $9 billion server space that is populated by such top-tier companies as Dell, IBM and HP. Weinbrandt said the company plans to separate itself from the others by offering better services, support and relationship management. That includes such services as having engineer-level support on initial help calls and offering service options such as a two-hour response time, he said.The company is focusing on small and mid-sized businesses, government and institutional agencies and the lower-end of large corporate companies. Gateway estimates it will ship 1.8 million server units in 2003, with growth targets of 3.1 million units by 2007. Weinbrandt said Gateways installed base of PC and notebook users can help give the company entrée into the enterprise, but at the same time, being a server vendor will help the company sell more desktop and mobile products. Another avenue for building Gateways enterprise business will be its 192 Gateway Country stores, which Ted Ladd, a spokesman for the companys business products group, said are undergoing a complete redesign. The renovations will be completed by the end of the year, with the storeswhich have been primarily targeting consumersoffering space for small business products, including servers, Ladd said.
"Hardware is not a differentiating product in this business," Weinbrandt said. "What brings us to the table is, one, our name, we are a tier-one vendor and we have experience in notebooks and PCs."