Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Dell to buy Silverback from MSP Alliance blogger

From Charles Weaver, the blogger at the MSPAlliance. I appreciate this guys general frankness about the industry , even though industry groups always make me a little suspicious. Anyhow, Charles speaks to the the impact of Dell's planned purchase of Silverback, a provider of MSP platforms. It certainly makes sense that Dell would go down this road and it will help get this style of IT support into the mainstream mindset. My opinion continues to be "Home computing and MSP's don't mix" but we'll see if they take it into that space although my assumption is that it won't.

"First, I've already received a lot of feedback from the MSPs out there saying that Dell had better not use this acquisition to compete with the channel in a managed services play. Let's hope that they read this blog first before doing something like that. Buying a company like SilverBack will not confer upon Dell any instant integrity or clout within the MSP community. Only good channel and business practices can accomplish that goal."

I think the match makes a lot of sense from a technical perspective. Dell sells a lot of hardware. Buying a company like SilverBack allows Dell to more effectively manage that hardware and could help Dell really bolster its channel credibility by developing existing Dell resellers into managed service providers. Doing so, at least in theory, will mean more Dell hardware being sold. It will also mean that same hardware being managed by professional (we can only hope) MSPs translating into greater customer satisfaction and security.

From a marketing perspective, this deal will likely have a very positive and long term effect for the managed service providers. It isn't everyday that a household name like Dell acquires a company that is so steeped in managed services history as SilverBack. My personal hope is that this deal will bring greater recognition and attention to the MSP community and really solidify the name of MSPs and managed services in the mainstream business community.