Page Two

By eweek  |  Posted 2002-10-28 Print this article Print

: Mulcahy Interview"> eWEEK: Was there ever a point over the last two years when you thought, with regard to the investigations, how much worse can this get? Mulcahy: (laughs) Every day. I think the frustration is, and its not just my frustration, its the frustration of the entire Xerox team, is that the last two years, weve made commitments we delivered on every single one. Weve done, I think, an amazing turn around of a great company. Weve not missed an expectation. Weve clearly been on a path of rebuilding confidence, preserving shareholder value, saving jobs. And this story just keeps getting retold and retold and retold. Theres not one piece of new news. Its old news. And I think its just the environment that were in that theres more of an appetite to talk about companies that are failing vs. companies that are succeeding. And Im very hopeful that the story might get told about the fact that, yes, this company faced some very serious problems but is not just surviving but succeeding.
eWEEK: What impact has HP/Compaq had on Xerox?
Mulcahy: I cant say that its had a significant impact. I think any major merger or acquisition can be somewhat distracting for a company. And weve done them as well. And clearly were a competitor in the office color printing business. And I think weve strengthened our position over the last couple of quarters, which we feel good about. But theyre a strong competitor, and we dont take them lightly. We do think there was hopefully a window of opportunity that weve capitalized on. eWEEK: HP is moving aggressively into the multifunctioning printer segment, and theyre not shy about targeting Xerox. Youre in their sights. Mulcahy: And theyre in our sights. … I think its kind of interesting. For the last five years wed actually been criticized for not focusing on single-function printing and putting our development investment into multifunction. We kind of viewed HPs decision as a validation of all of the investments weve made in multifunction and being the best in class there as absolutely the right decision. Thats the growing area. Black-and-white printing is declining. But multifunction is growing. Thats why HPs trying to go into it. eWEEK: As far as working with PC companies, is there any interest on Xeroxs part to work with the Dell [Computers] of the world? Mulcahy: We partner with lots of companies, and were open to partnering. We distribute printers through Dell today, so were already a partner there. We work with EDS as a services partner. Weve got lots of partners in the marketplace, and we continue to build those relationships. We go to market in multiple ways, and well continue to expand those. eWEEK: Do you have any interest in expanding your relationship with Dell to include more products and or services? Mulcahy: Well, certainly, its been speculated, that we among others have been in discussions with Dell. And if its right for Xerox and right for Dell, then theres possibilities there. eWEEK: Are there actual talks going on? Mulcahy: Thats probably something they would have to confirm before we confirmed. Id probably choose not to confirm that. eWEEK: In addition to the $1.3 billion costs you reduced since 2000, you recently announced plans to cut costs by an additional $1 billion. Wheres that going to come from? Mulcahy: We believe theres opportunities for efficiency that will make us a better company and also cut costs. We have big opportunities in our back-office operations from reducing our bad debt and becoming more efficient in terms of our back-office administration, and were working with GE Capial in North America in a partner arrangement to do that. So thats an area that we think has a lot of opportunity. It doesnt necessarily cut heads, but it cuts costs big time. Another area is were expanding our tele-Web capabilities. So things like being able to do things over the Web that currently require travel, things like service activities, meter read activities, all sorts of activities that we can do over the Web with a lot less cost than a kind of feet on the street approach. Our selling channel: Were using tele-Web very much both in assisting our direct sales channel as well as selling end-to-end. So thats a huge opportunity for us costwise. We think theres productivity to be gained across the business. One of the things were deploying is a six-sigma approach. Weve used it in our manufacturing environment in the past very successfully, and were using it on other tough business problems now and training black belts within Xerox to address a lot of the issues that we think will take cost out of the business. Take waste out, therefore take cost out. Things like facilities. Every aspect of the business that you can think of we want to be a benchmark and best in class.


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