Dell By The (Some) Numbers

AUSTIN, TEXAS:  It’s not easy getting a fix on now that it is a private operation. What we know for certain is that Michael took his $57-billion (2013) company private for $25 billion (75% of it; the rest going to private equity firm Silver Lake) in October 29, 2013.

Here are some other numbers — on servers, and PCs — that indicate Dell has been turning in fairly solid results, for the most part, since 2013. In the latest numbers from , Q1 shipments jumped 13%, while revenue increased an even healthier 17.9%, due in large part to the strong growth in the hyperscale segment, an area where Dell dominates. While HP continued on top of the server market, Dell was close behind in second place, with revenues up 14% and shipments up 9%. Lenovo saw the biggest gains, and Cisco was the next fastest growing server vendor, but they were both achieved on much smaller slices of the market.

According to ’s server numbers, revenues were up 17.2% year-over-year, on an 8.4% increase in shipments, and Dell was still second to HP. It provided a little more detail on what’s happening in the hyperscale, density-optimized segment.

‘Dell showed year-over-year growth of 12.6% and its $2.3 billion of revenue placed the company in the number 2 position with 18% market share this quarter. Dell also benefited from revenue growth in density-optimized and rack-optimized products. Dell’s density-optimized revenue was the largest of any of the top 5 vendors.’

“We continue to see a market profile that is increasingly driven by new compute deployment scenarios, often in hyperscale datacenters. These customers tend to buy in large contracts, creating considerable variability within any given quarter, with this variability usually associated with density-optimized server products,” said Al Gillen, Program Vice President, Servers and System Software at IDC. “Shipments of density-optimized servers tend to land in a given region in a given quarter, and either in a different region, or not at all, in the subsequent quarter. This leads to a relatively unpredictable profile. This was true in the first quarter of 2015, where we saw density-optimized server shipment growth of 26.1% and revenue growth of 51.6%. This growth follows the previous quarter where density-optimized shipments and revenues were both in significant decline on a year-over-year basis. More traditional form factors typically have far more stable growth profiles.”

According to IDC’s Q4 enterprise storage numbers, Dell was tied for third (9% revenue share and 5.2% growth) with IBM, behind EMC (22.2%, 3.3%) and HP (13.8%, 4.8%), but it didn’t make the top-5 list of external disk storage vendors for the quarter. However, if you combined external storage with server storage, Dell shipped the most capacity of any vendor in 2014.

‘I’m thrilled to share that according to the industry analyst firm IDC, Dell is the No. 1 vendor by capacity shipped for the OEM-Based Disk Storage Systems Market (internal and external storage) in 2014 and the only vendor to ship more than 10 exabytes of capacity 2014’, blogged Alan Atkinson, GM, Dell Storage, back in April. In addition, he said the company was ‘the No. 1 provider of external DAS storage in terms of revenue during past two years and the No. 1 iSCSI-attached external storage vendor in revenue, a spot we’ve held for 26 of the last 28 quarters!’

Dell is also busy pushing its software-defined storage agenda (Blue Thunder). While nowhere near the size of disk or flash storage, SDS is expected to explode at a CAGR of 35.20% over the period 2015-2019.

“Dell has emerged as a global leader in software-defined storage solutions, based on its unique, broad and embracing approach to work closely with key storage software vendors to deliver robust, validated solutions on Dell hardware that’s backed by Dell global services and support,” said Scott Sinclair, senior analyst, Enterprise Strategy Group, in a prepared statement. “The Dell and Nutanix marriage is a win for both companies, and, ultimately, customers. Nutanix gains by partnering with a global leader with proven server technology and services, and Dell gains by being the only large vendor integrating its servers with Nutanix’s market leading hyperconverged software. Customers get the known quality and support of Dell plus Nutanix’s easily scaled and managed software for virtualized environments.”

In the market, Dell came in fourth for Q1, with 12.6% of the market, but down 5.1% YoY, in a market that saw an overall decline of 5.2%. Both first-place Lenovo (18.9%) and second-place HP (17.6%) were the only top-five vendors to grow during the quarter.

DISCLAIMER: It really looks like Dell is getting their money’s worth.

Author: Steve Wexler

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