Dell will launch a professional services division early next month in a bid to generate cash following a slump in hardware sales.
The new unit, which will become part of Dell's Technology Consulting Group (TCG), will be headed up by former Compaq executive Jeff Lynn, who recently joined the company to run the small but growing unit.
The launch of the new division will allow Dell to provide enterprise customers with service and consulting, system deployment, ebusiness strategies, web hosting and other services.
In the past two years Dell, which has traditionally partnered with third parties such as Unisys to provide services, has begun to give a boost to its services organisation.
These services include support for computers the company sells and help with planning, installation and other work.
The TCG offers high-end consulting services, such as designing worldwide storage networks for large customers. In addition to offering support for hardware and operating systems, Dell provides support for higher-level software from Microsoft, SAP, Oracle and i2 Technologies.
Dell said recently that DTC, which already does $3bn worth of services business, is a fast growing unit within the company.
Merrill Lynch analyst Steve Fortuna said in a research note: "Dell intends to commoditise services, even at the high end. Dell expects its services revenue to grow twice as fast as the rest of the company's business."
While Dell has relied on partners, companies such as IBM, Compaq and Hewlett Packard all have well-developed services businesses.
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