Lenovo Declined Microsoft’s Proposal To Sell Surface Devices

Lenovo LavieZ HZ550

Last month, we reported that Dell will sell Surface Pro devices along with enterprise-class support and services. HP, Accenture and Avanade will also join Dell in the coming months. Gianfranco Lanci, president and COO at Lenovo, told attendees at the recent Canalys Channels Forum that Microsoft came to them with the same proposal of reselling Surface devices and they declined it.

…he revealed that Microsoft “asked me more than one year ago, and I said no I don’t see any reason why I should sell a product from within brackets, competition.”

He said Lenovo views Microsoft as a “partner on certain things”, and a “competitor” in other scenarios, meaning that “we will need to be a little bit careful”.

Dell and HP executives were also present in the forum and they had different views and they explained why they accepted to sell Surface devices.

Marius Hass, chief commercial officer at Dell told that enterprise customers had asked for the devices to be “managed and deployed” by Dell.

He said they wanted the “same eco system” or “consistent engagement model” that Dell provides for its own kit.

“We could tell those customer sorry we are not interested because its a competing product, or we could say ‘Mr and Mrs customer we’ll take care of you’, and that’s what we did”.

Dion Weisler, CEO of HP said that “customer pull” is the main reason they have started to sell Surface.

“These are customers we have been working with for many, many years and we don’t simply want to cede those relationships to a competitor, so we said ‘OK, we’ll participate in that’.”

HP sales folk do not get paid for selling Surface, and “we will sell, service and support Surface if the customer absolutely insists upon it but that is not our first preference”, said the exec.

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