Hill aims to 'ignite' Dell’s NZ business

Dell’s recently appointed country manager Mike Hill says he wants to give the vendor more of public face through participation in local advocacy organisations.

“We have an obligation to play a bigger role in New Zealand government advocacy and user groups,” says Hill, adding it has started discussions with organisations, such as NZICT and the New Zealand Computer Society.

He wants to establish a greater public presence to counter the perception of the company as one which traditionally sells online, saying that getting involved in working parties and government groups would “really raise the profile”.

He says that his appointment coincides with a lean spell in the PC market and is a good time to come in.

“If you look at the IDC data it shows the market isn’t growing. My objective will be to grow faster than the market. Even if it’s declining I would like to think we can still grow faster than the market.”

According to Dell New Zealand’s recently posted financial results for the year to January 2009, it made an overall loss of $336,000, following a profit for the previous corresponding period of $430,000.

Hill’s focus is on the public sector and enterprise markets, while ANZ channel strategy and acquisition director Rob Makin and ANZ SMB general manager Deborah Harrigan work with small and medium businesses. Hill and Makin have been meeting with local partners and say the company is still actively recruiting here.

Makin says he doesn’t have an accurate number of those who have joined Dell’s partner programme, but says “new partners are coming on board day by day.” Dell wants to find more partners in the South Island to ensure it covers the whole market, he says.

“We’re building a strategy with Mike that really is going to open up a lot of opportunity for [partners]. In the next few months we hope to see Dell partner-led initiatives.”

Hill, a former HP enterprise sales director who also worked for Compaq prior to the merger, says he has strong channel experience and in balancing direct and indirect sales strategies.

He says potential Dell partners have an opportunity to wrap services around its products, without fearing competition from the vendor.

“Dell doesn’t have a huge services offering. Having that indirect model that’s a proposition to make to partners and they will bring those external services. They have got offerings around datacentres, managed services and enterprise integration, things like that.”

Read Reseller News' feature on the NZ PC market

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