Server sales, meanwhile, declined year over year in Q3. On the other hand, Cook notes, they’re up 7% year to date. “That continues to really be healthy for us,” says Cook of the server business. “Macro market economics,” she adds, are at least partially to blame for the dip in that segment, along with the difficulty of sustaining the double-digit upticks Dell announced in earlier quarters. Indeed, server revenue climbed 18% in Q1.
“I’m not overly concerned,” Cook says.
Results from 2019, she continues, will keep Dell focused on encouraging cross-selling of the company’s sprawling portfolio in 2020. At present, partners who sell three lines of business (like servers, storage, and client PCs, for example) generate 31 times as much revenue as partners who sell just one. Partners who sell three lines of business plus products from Dell’s VMware unit, moreover, produce up to 103 times the revenue of single-LOB partners.
“There’s a tremendous opportunity for our partners to really invest and engage in the skills and the capabilities and the innovations that VMware is bringing to market,” Cook says.
Dell will unveil its 2020 plans for the partner program next month. Without previewing specifics, Cook suggests that what’s coming will be more along the lines of modest enhancements than wholesale modifications.
“We think the program is really effective and competitive, so I wouldn’t foresee any major, major changes,” she says. “We’re just making subtle adjustments to the strategy in business, but really staying the course.”