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Dell EMC begins a united footprint in Asia

The dust is settling on the historic Dell EMC merger, concluded just over three months ago. And the big guns are being rolled out to convince all that they are united in this ‘coupling’. That top management from EMC has gained expanded roles in the merged entity in Asia no doubt, sends clear signals.

The agenda at the recent media luncheon in Petaling Jaya hosted by Mr. KT Ong, Country Manager (Commercial Business, Malaysia) was to introduce the expanded roles of his two colleagues, Mr. Sumash Singh and Mr. Yasir Yousuff, in the new merged entity.

In his opening remarks, Ong reaffirmed that Dell EMC’s value proposition will encompass the way one does business, from the edge, to the core, to the cloud.  In addition, Dell EMC will continue to place strong focus on its personal computer segment, be at the forefront and maintain the rigour of striving to win awards in this space.

Sumash Singh, a veteran from EMC, is to lead Dell EMC in enabling customers’ digital transformation journey through Dell EMC’s platform solutions for cloud, big data and security. He has the primary responsibility of driving the entity’s infrastructure solutions sales in Southeast Asia, Korea and across emerging economies in South Asia. This will entail all of Dell EMC’s data centre offerings across compute, storage, networking, converged/hyper-converged systems, to data protection and data lakes.

Sumash Singh, Director - Data Centre Solutions, South Asia & Korea

Sumash Singh, Director – Data Centre Solutions, South Asia & Korea

Sumash moved from South Africa to Malaysia only just last year.  While in South Africa, he had led EMC’s Data Protection Solutions Division. He is optimistic that Asia represents a huge opportunity for digital transformation as it is at the forefront of many enterprises’ priorities. Malaysia represents a strong base from where he can continue to build momentum.

“69% of the Malaysian population is already internet-savvy while 61% uses 3G or 4G connectivity. Consumers in Malaysia marry their personal and corporate lives seamlessly.”

“When we bring Dell and EMC together, we, likewise, marry the number 1 in all categories, from consumer hardware to servicing the needs of SOHOs to big corporations … we are poised to serve the 21st century demands seamlessly”, he pointed out.

Yasir Yousuff is no stranger to Malaysia, having settled here since 2008, serving in Microsoft and subsequently, Nielsen-McKinsey. In his new role at Dell EMC, he is tasked with heading marketing in South Asia across enterprise, commercial and consumer businesses via segmented programs, digital integration, social and channel marketing.

Dell EMC looks set to benefit from Yasir’s marketing prowess, he having being consistently ranked in the top 3 global list of Chief Marketing Officers (CMOs) while at Microsoft. Ranking being meaningful to a marketeer, Yasir further disclosed that Malaysia is a top 5 location within the world of Dell EMC, in terms of the number of workforce in the merged entity. That Dell EMC will be strongly committed to Malaysia, is almost a foregone conclusion.

Yasir Yousuff, Senior Director of Marketing, South Asia

Yasir Yousuff, Senior Director of Marketing, South Asia

Yasir also carried the message that Michael Dell had expressed a continued trajectory of innovative products where consumer business will figure prominently in the merged entity. As for the enterprise IT space, Dell EMC aims to support enterprises ease into the Fourth Industrial Revolution, now made even easier with the merged entity’s expansive technology and comprehensive IT offering.

When asked if there are any merger pains, Yasir said, ”The same culture of being completely customer-centric and completely focused on innovation is a shared philosophy of both Dell and EMC. Dell EMC believes in retaining as many people as it can and build a culture that is an amalgamation of the best from both companies.”

“Despite 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,” Yasir explained. “Even looking at the name, that we have Dell and EMC, and didn’t get rid of the EMC brand… that shows that we are different from other companies. We are very committed to retaining not just the best of the technology and products, but also in people and making sure we have the best talents supporting the business,” he added.

Yasir was also asked what strategies were in place for overlapping products in core technologies especially between EMC VNX and Dell SC and PS series.

He disclosed that the product strategies are still work-in-progress but 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 one storage and data protection team. Earlier there were multiple divisions and hence multiple products. So within that team, we will look at segmentation and tiering for high end workloads and enterprise customers, similarly for mid-tier, and work out what products best fits our customer needs.”

Nevertheless, he made it clear that existing customers of both products will continue to be supported and that customer investments are protected. There will be a clear roadmap should there be consolidation, as well as a roadmap for future growth.

Another question posed was on how EMC and Dell will reconcile its belief. Specifically, in the past, EMC had been quite vocal that they do not 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 needs,” says Sumash. He reaffirmed that they will continue to protect customers’ needs and will marry the right technologies. For e.g Dell EMC may utilise tape as a viable contingent for customers who do not have high stringent compliance requirements to keep data for long periods of time, based on cost-efficiency reasons.

We see that Dell EMC still has a lot on its plate to align …. but with strong leadership, it looks like it will certainly take the right steps in the right direction.



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