Today the channel represents about $20 billion, or 33 percent, of Dell's nearly $60 billion in annual revenue. Michael Dell has said that the percentage of Dell sales going through the channel has the potential to reach as much as 60 percent of the company's commercial sales -- with no limit on just how high it could go.
In December, Dell said it would embark on a warpath to boost its relationship with the channel by moving over 200,000 accounts in the hands of partners. As part of the drive to boost its enterprise hardware, software and services revenue, Dell said it was rolling out lucrative incentives for Dell Direct sales reps to work hand-in-hand with channel partners. Dell said part of the push includes a 20 percent "compensation accelerator" for its direct sales team to generate new enterprise business with partners, along with co-managing direct accounts with the channel.