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Engaging Africa all about delivering choice says Dell

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Having recently opened an office in Nairobi, regional leadership at global PC and technology brand Dell is upbeat about where the Company is currently positioned in the market – pleased, they say, but not satisfied. Their arsenal to take on competition and capture additional market share: flexibility in solutions and choice for users, both from a consumer and commercial enterprise point of view.

and Stewart van Graan, GM Dell Southern and Central Africa. (Image source: Dell)
and Stewart van Graan, GM Dell Southern and Central Africa. (Image source: Dell)

This message is one that the Company is eager to convey to the market, as well as the fact that it is now two weeks old as an entirely private company and acceleration of its core strategy to bolster the data centre through the rollout of software..

It is also part of the communication evolving from the Company’s Solutions Tour 2013 campaign, involving a forum of keynote speakers, technology demonstrations and Special Interest Groups.

Speaking from the site of the South African leg of the Tour, with Johannesburg being the last city on the itinerary, and on the back of a visit to Nairobi to oversee the opening of the office, Aongus Hegarty, President, EMEA at Dell and Stewart van Graan, GM Dell Southern and Central Africa, explained why they believe the company’s customer-centric strategy is working in South Africa and into the rest of the continent.

With its strategy to provide resources and support its partner network through the offer of its product portfolio, the Company has identified new opportunity emerging within the domestic market – starting with security and surveillance.

“Quite different to what you would have expected from a traditional IT company … but we are using technology …in a very specific way to improve security and protect. So that would be one area that we are excited about whether working with government or private companies,” said van Graan.

Another opportunity lies within cost efficiency through the modernisation of ICT infrastructure, characterised by the transformation of datacentres into new platforms that take advantage of social media and empowering customers, employees in terms of access to data.

Hegarty says Dell, as a private company, intends to accelerate its focus on acquiring IP and innovating around the technology. “The business market here in South Africa is extremely mature, as you would expect. Many of the complex solutions are being deployed and we are also seeing that we are working with customers around concepts and proof of concepts back into our solutions and using technology specialist, using technology right at the leading edge. That said, in Kenya, where there is clearly less technology in place, there is a great opportunity for government, for business to leapfrog in many ways some of that earlier technology and deploy some of the latest and newest technology.”


Both van Graan and Hegarty emphasise that the Company is really about offering the market an alternative to anything that is propriotry ory. “We are more about the open scalable solutions,” says van Graan.

They are of the belief that by being flexible in the way they listen to customers is one of the ways they have differentiated themselves.

This flexibility has helped drive business in key regions like Kenya and in sectors like aviation, management claims.  “The interesting thing about, lets call it the rest of Southern Africa – lets exclude South Africa for the moment because it is a bit of a hybrid –  is that we work exclusively through our partners. We are on a huge mission, if you will, to enable our partners to represent our technologies and offerings in the way that we would if we were a direct company in that region. So if you talk about enabling, that resonates very well with governments in these countries because we are creating opportunity local citizens and businesses,” van Graan adds.

Chris Tredger – Online Editor

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