En Pointe Technologies partners with both IBM and Lenovo. Andrew Hertenstein, manager of Microsoft Data Center and Azure Professional Services for the San Francisco-based solution provider, said the deal is a win for both Lenovo and its partner.
"Lenovo proved itself with what it's done with IBM's PC business. I think they can do the same with servers," Hertenstein said. "It's going to take some time, but overall I think this is a positive for Lenovo and the channel."
Hertenstein said the x86 server deal is especially important in the wake of Lenovo's SMB storage move; last year Lenovo formed a joint venture with EMC around its Iomega storage line, which was rebranded LenovoEMC. "They have the storage, and now they have the servers," Hertenstein said. "I think Lenovo is clearly moving upstream and building up their offerings the way the HP of old did many years ago."
While the acquisition allows IBM to exit from a bruising server battle with HP and Dell and focus on products and services that have higher margins, it means the opposite for Lenovo. Joe Lore, sales director of at Sunnytech, a Lenovo partner based in Woburn, Mass., said the acquisition puts Lenovo on the path to ultimately unseat HP and Dell as leading server makers.
"If Lenovo can do for IBM's x86 servers business what it did for IBM's sagging ThinkPad business, it's going to be real game changer. Give it a year; Dell and HP will feel Lenovo breathing down the back of their necks. My business could grow 15 percent thanks to Lenovo. Those gains will come directly at HP and Dell's business," Lore said.
CRN's Rob Wright contributed to this report
PUBLISHED JAN. 23, 2014