Paul Kunert

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Paul Kunert is the editor of Channel Register
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There's never been a better time to be a product reseller... if you like pain

Tough times are here again for the on-premise infrastructure providers with Insight Enterprises the latest to report top line slippage. The global reseller filed sales of $1.17bn for calendar Q1, down four per cent year-on-year, as declines in European and Asia Pacific ops wiped out the slight progress made in North America. …
Paul Kunert, 29 Apr 2016
Trillian chats to a depressed Marvin the Robot in the 2005 film version of Hitchhiker's Guide to Galaxy. C Walt Disney Pictures

Food for Deep Thought: 42 is IBM's answer to Life, the Universe and Everything...

Deep Thought calculated the number 42 to be the Answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe and Everything. Over at IBM it was the frequency the word "transform" was used to explain another dire quarter. The supercomputer in the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy took 7.5 million years to determine the importance of …
Paul Kunert, 29 Apr 2016

Hewlett Packard Enterprise: Wanna walk the plank voluntarily? You got it

Exclusive Hewlett Packard Enterprise is to initiate a voluntary redundancy (VR) option nearly two months after putting 1,092 UK staff in Enterprise Services (ES) on the chopping block. Techies at HPE were told they were in scope for compulsory job cuts in March including 780 in IT Outsourcing and 173 from the Application Business …
Paul Kunert, 27 Apr 2016

Microsoft fingered for Western Euro PC tragedy

Microsoft last year effectively murdered one part of the mobile PC market that was going gangbusters - Windows with Bing (WwB) - and unsurprisingly this is now reflected in weaker sales across Western Europe. The low-cost WwB portables reached distributors by summer '14, designed to counter what was seen as a growing threat to …
Paul Kunert, 27 Apr 2016
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Outsourcery inks Vodafone finance deal as selloff rumours grow

Sickly slinger of cloud services Outsourcery has signed a finance deal with Vodafone to keep the wolves from the door as it prepares to restructure – or do what some are interpreting as readying itself for a sale. The AIM-listed bringer of infrastructure, apps and UC services revealed at the start of this week it is again …
Paul Kunert, 27 Apr 2016
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IBM says no, non, nein to Brexit

IBM has left UK staff in no doubt it wants Britain to remain in the European Union even though many of those working in its services division might not be EU-based by the end of 2017. In February, Big Blue was one of 200 large firms across a range of industries that urged Brits to vote to stay in the Union, claiming a "Brexit …
Paul Kunert, 26 Apr 2016

Larry Ellison's Brit consortium in 'advanced talks' to buy Aston Villa

Larry Ellison is rumoured to be mulling a substantial cash injection into a foundering business which has seen itself unable to compete in recent years with more powerful rivals. No, not Oracle, but Aston Villa, according to the the word on the street and in The Sun, which says that a Brit consortium linked to the US …
Paul Kunert, 21 Apr 2016
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The suits in finance are cutting down on tech spend – Computacenter

Some financial services institutions are taking a break from spending cash on tech, London-based supplier giant Computacenter said today as it reported a Q1 trading update. The services-based reseller revealed a four per cent year-on-year dip in UK turnover to £348.6m for the three months ended 31 March. Product sales dropped …
Paul Kunert, 21 Apr 2016
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Apple updates MacBooks

Apple has given its MacBook fleet a lick of paint - rose gold to be exact. The three updated devices house a dual-core Intel Core m3, Core m5 and Core m7 processor respectively with Turbo Boost speeds up to 2.2GHz, 2.7 GHz and 3.1 GHz. Intel HD Graphics 515 and PCIe-based flash storage are also integrated. Other colours for the …
Paul Kunert, 19 Apr 2016
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Intel preps for layoffs: Chipzilla sharpens axe for deep job cuts

Job queues in Intel’s home state of Oregon are to swell in 2016 with Chipzilla steering thousands of workers to the chopping block. So claimed local paper The Oregonian, where Chipzilla is headquartered, with the employee cull said to start after Intel reports its Q1 numbers next week. According to the loquacious sources the …
Paul Kunert, 19 Apr 2016
£10 notes. Pic: Howard Lake

Ah, so that's why Adapt wasn't put in the shop window in 2015

The reason why Lyceum-backed Adapt remains Lyceum-backed is contained in their latest set of annual profit and loss accounts - company growth stalled and so a sales process was halted. The London-based outfit was expected to come onto the market last last year and tasked M&A and corporate finance advisor ARMA Partners with …
Paul Kunert, 18 Apr 2016
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Snowden sings again

NSA refusenik Edward Snowden has teamed up with French electronica old-timer Jean Michel Jarre to collaborate on a song titled "Exit", a six-minute track that would not have been out of place in the '90s. It is available to download on Spotify and Apple Music - but not on Tidal, it seems. You have been warned. Register …
Paul Kunert, 15 Apr 2016

Mitel nabs Polycom in $1.96bn deal

Elliott Management has struck again: Mitel has agreed to cough $1.96bn for bigger unified comms rival Polycom some months after the activist investor took a stake in both businesses and started the match-making. The $23bn hedge fund took a 6.6 per cent stake in Polycom and 9.6 per cent in Mitel in October and was calling for …
Paul Kunert, 15 Apr 2016
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Microsoft licensing giant yanked off market after sales bid fails

The sales process for Microsoft enterprise licensing house Comparex is "ongoing", the parent company has told us, denying claims from multiple industry sources it is dead in the water. The Raiffeisen Banking Group-owned reseller hired investment banker Jefferies to manage a sales process in May and by September just two …
Paul Kunert, 15 Apr 2016
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PC biz merger at risk

Vaio's backers have ended Toshiba and Fujitsu merger talks. The private equity firm behind Vaio has ended merger talks with the PC units at Toshiba and Fujitsu, according to a report. Japan Industrial Partners Inc has walked away from the table, and neither of the other firms wants to take a majority stake, putting the whole …
Paul Kunert, 14 Apr 2016
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Opera Software bid

Chinese bidders are holding out for more shareholders to accept their offer. The Middle Kingdom web firms, which bid $1.23bn for Norwegian mobile phone browser biz Opera, have extended the offer in order to get acceptance from shareholders who own 90 per cent of the stock. Currently the group has approval from 72.19 per cent …
Paul Kunert, 14 Apr 2016
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Porsche hires accountant

Porsche has plucked a Gartner car specialist for its digital mobility push. Thilo Koslowski was a Silicon Valley-based veep and practise leader for the automotive, vehicle info and comms tech unit at Gartner. Register Vulture logo - grey
Paul Kunert, 14 Apr 2016
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Misco: We're moving to the cloud after yesterday's bit barn meltdown

Reseller giant Misco has confirmed it will embark on a crash migration program to shift its infrastructure into the cloud - a day after a datacentre meltdown that froze its e-commerce front-end for six hours. The dash to the cloud while having to maintain a creaking inhouse infrastructure illustrates the dilemma facing …
Paul Kunert, 14 Apr 2016

Microsoft: We have a bullet ready for 12 competencies

Microsoft is to take 12 "old world" accreditations out back to be shot as it drags channel partners – some of them kicking and screaming – into the cloud. Gavriella Schuster, GM of Microsoft’s worldwide partner group, said it will “streamline” certifications and funnel investment on “building successful cloud practices”. “ …
Paul Kunert, 13 Apr 2016

Web wobbles at Misco: Might be back up today, or tomorrow

Not wanting to be totally outdone by the recent outage at arch rival Insight Enterprises, online reselling rival Systemax Europe - trading as Misco - has battled its own web demons for the best part of this morning. The company’s site first fell over at least two hours ago with its Twitter feed acknowledging the worldwide …
Paul Kunert, 13 Apr 2016

IBM's tops sales staff face long haul...to Hawaii

IBM is whisking its biggest sales hitters in Global Tech Services to Hawaii as a pat them on the back for their efforts, while others in the division head out the door on stat redundancy terms. In a 5 April internal blog post, Martin Blackburn, COO for GTS Europe, confirmed that UK and Ireland’s “top performers” were selected …
Paul Kunert, 08 Apr 2016
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Troubled Azzurri Comms offloaded to AIM-listed Maintel

AIM-listed comms and networking integrator Maintel has conditionally agreed to slurp struggling rival Azzurri Comms for £48.5m - a company that is twice its size. At the same time, the London-based Maintel confirmed it is also to place Ordinary Shares on the market at 700 pence each with the aim of generating roughly £24m to …
Paul Kunert, 08 Apr 2016
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Fujitsu Services hacks bonuses to pay for minimum wage hike

Exclusive Folk at Fujitsu Services Engineering Services Ltd (FSESL) have claimed that changes to their bonuses made to accommodate a rise in the minimum wage will actually leave some of them worse off. From 1 April – the Fools’ Day – the UK organisation complied with new government legislation to raise the National Living Wage for those …
Paul Kunert, 08 Apr 2016
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Lexmark in sales chats

Chinese ink cartridge chip maker Apex Technology Co is in talks to buy US printer firm Lexmark, according to reports. Lexmark had explored selling software and hardware units separately but the latest negotiations could sell the entire organisation sold. Lexmark, formerly owned by IBM, has a market cap of $2bn. Register …
Paul Kunert, 07 Apr 2016
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Logicalis Euro honcho Spirlet quits for exec role at Cisco

Logicalis European head honcho Arnaud Spirlet is to exit the business before fully implementing the turnaround strategy he drafted. Spirlet, who was made head of Europe in October 2014 when he succeeded Ian Cook, is to take the keys to the top exec suite at Cisco’s Belgium and Luxembourg operation. Company insiders at Cisco …
Paul Kunert, 06 Apr 2016
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IBM, SAP in cloud deal

Those big old lumbering tech organs SAP and IBM are working together to combine Big Blue’s cognitive wares, cloud and power systems with the German enterprise vendor’s software and cloud platform. The companies plan to co-locate resources in Germany and the east coast of the US, and will also work on on-premise tech. …
Paul Kunert, 06 Apr 2016
The lift-off of New Shepard

3D printers set for lift off? Yes, yes, yes... at some point in the future

3D printing is still perched on the edge of greatness, industry types insist, but sales are not yet matching the marketing bluster. The latest stats in the shipment stakes arrived on our desks today from the number-crunchers at Context - units sales went up 19 per cent year-on-year in Q4 to 73,012 machines. Some 96 per cent …
Paul Kunert, 05 Apr 2016
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Kelway founder and CEO Phil Doye steps out of role

Exclusive The brand swap isn't the only major change happening at the London-based Kelway – company founder and CEO Phil Doye is stepping down from daily operational duties, El Chan can reveal. The services-based reseller was acquired by the world's largest tech dealer CDW in July, and much of the senior management has remained in place …
Paul Kunert, 30 Mar 2016
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R&D white coats at HP Inc will make corporate ID into wearable tech

The consumerisation of wearables has got HP Inc’s chief techie thinking about ways to reach out and touch everyone on the planet. The obvious way to do it? Sex up the corporate name badge, of course. Shane Wall, CTO at the PC and printer monster told us the company is eyeing up the top spot in commercial wearables – though …
Paul Kunert, 29 Mar 2016
An eraser

Kelway's American owners to import CDW International brand to UK

Philip Kelway Doye's middle name will disappear from his firm's corporate HQ on 4 April and be replaced with CDW International, its American parent’s brand for global ops. CDW, which sells IT to 10 million SMBs in the US and turns over in excess of $50m a day, acquired Kelway in August last year for $431m and is assimilating …
Paul Kunert, 24 Mar 2016
Railway line split. Pic: Ian Sane

Troubled Acer is going to chop itself into three bite sized chunks

Management head-to-wall banging at Acer has seemingly inspired a novel idea to fix the things that are wrong the business - more restructuring. Well done, C-suite execs! Bonuses all round! The new design for Acer, if Digi Times is right, is to turn itself into a holding company to attract new investors and carve the business …
Paul Kunert, 23 Mar 2016

BT: We're killing the dabs brand. Oh and can customers re-register to buy on our site?

BT is celebrating the 10-year anniversary of its dabs.com acquisition by dumping the online gadget souk's brand and “inviting” customers to re-register their trading account. In a note to punters, the Brit telco monopoly confirmed that on 11 April it is taking the name outside to be shot, “moving forward with just our BT …
Paul Kunert, 23 Mar 2016
Toilet roll printed with fake US $100 bills

HP Inc won't shake you down for ink in 3D printer era, says CTO

Interview HP Inc is threatening to bring an era of open platforms to 3D printing, one it claims will turn the well used – and much criticised – ink toner supplies biz model on its head. So how exactly does HP expect to print money when it is actually using thermo-plastics? There's one buzz word on the tip of the CTO's tongue – …
Paul Kunert, 23 Mar 2016

Look who just joined Salesforce... it's former European commish Neelie Kroes

Former European Commissioner "Steelie" Neelie Kroes is to take a seat at the board of perpetually loss-making SaaS pioneer Salesforce, the company confirmed today. Clearly the one-time Eurocrat has not yet had her fill of working in a sprawling, ego-driven, bureaucratic organisation. Perhaps Salesforce’s CEO Marc Benioff will …
Paul Kunert, 22 Mar 2016
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What to call a £200m 15,000-tonne polar vessel – how about Boaty McBoatface?

The good folk of Blighty have voted with their fingers - the polar-bound Royal Research Ship is to be called Boaty McBoatface. The Natural Environmental Research Council last week asked for suggestions to name the £200m, 15,000 tonne floating lab that is bound for colder climes once it launches in 2019. At last count, some …
Paul Kunert, 21 Mar 2016
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Former Hewlett Packard Enterprise chief slips into OCSL

A couple of months after Hewlett Packard Enterprise veteran sales chief Martin Hess quit, he’s rocked up as chairman at OCSL – one of his former employer’s nearest and dearest in the channel. London-based OCSL partners only with HPE on hardware, there are not many tech suppliers in the channel that do this, and coupled with …
Paul Kunert, 17 Mar 2016

UK tech supplier Softcat shows off fuller figures

Mid-market reselling monster Softcat is still piling on the pounds after adding hundreds of new punters and squeezing more out of existing ones. But the tech supplier agrees with Chancellor Osborne - storm clouds are gathering over the UK economy. At the half-way stage of fiscal ’16 ended 31 January, turnover at the Marlow- …
Paul Kunert, 17 Mar 2016
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Microsoft throws $$$$s at resellers who snare shiny new cloudy punters

Microsoft is again chucking wads of cash at channel types that convince entirely new customers - those not familiar with outages - to sign up to SKUs of Office 365 and CRM Online Pro. Money talks - financial encouragement is a proven method to shape the behaviour of third party sellers - and under the Sprint to the Finish …
Paul Kunert, 16 Mar 2016
A fix for the troubled Windows 10 Start menu

Hey Windows 10, weren't you supposed to help PC sales?

Very few if any ever thought Windows 10 would truly reinvigorate the PC industry, and they were right - IDC has pulled down forecasts on traditional device sales for 2016. The analyst has clipped unit expectations by a couple of per cent, claiming global notebooks and desktops shipments into channels are now on course to …
Paul Kunert, 14 Mar 2016
An eraser

IBM to erase 14,000 people from the payroll – Wall St analyst

Up to 14,000 IBMers worldwide could leave under the latest redundancy programme, according to Wall Street moneymen. In a research note from Bernstein that was sent to customers and us, senior research analyst Tony Sacconaghi, said it appears IBM is taking “meaningful workforce rebalancing actions”. He highlighted a $1bn …
Paul Kunert, 10 Mar 2016

Staffers in charge of HPE's UK IT outsourcing face redundo in April

Around a quarter of Hewlett Packard Enterprise’s current IT Outsourcing staff are expected to be made redundant at end of next month, according to company insiders. As we exclusively revealed on Friday, 780 ITO workers are among 1,000 heads in the UK Enterprise Services division that were told their jobs are at risk. Sources …
Paul Kunert, 10 Mar 2016
China

ODMs feast on server sales bonanza as IT buyers ignore price rises

The march of Far East Original Design Manufacturers into a server industry traditionally dominated by the big brands continued in Q4, official stats revealed today. According to abacus fondler Gartner, global server sales climbed by 8.2 per cent year-on-year to $15.13bn on the back of a 9.2 per cent spike in shipments to 2. …
Paul Kunert, 09 Mar 2016
A large hand flicks an icon of a little red man. Image via shutterstock (Lasse Kristensen)

Eight in ten IBM Global Tech Services roles will be offshore by 2017

Exclusive Just 20 per cent of IBM’s Global Technology Services workforce in mature economies could remain under offshoring and near-shoring plans set out by the company’s top brass, The Register can exclusively reveal. Big Blue last month embarked on a cost-cutting exercise in the UK, putting 1,352 staff on a 45-day notice period to “ …
Paul Kunert, 07 Mar 2016
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Hardware – yes, hardware – is driving Hewlett Packard Enterprise's top line

Hewlett Packard Enterprise spends much of its time talking about hybrid IT taking over the world, but it was good old fashioned hardware - boosted by a $3.5bn buy - that made Q1 of fiscal year 2016 better than it might have been. In the period ended 31 January, the first full quarter of since HPE split with the PC and printing …
Paul Kunert, 04 Mar 2016
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XMA shutters its City pad, will service London from St Albans

XMA is to shutter its London offices because too few staff were based there to justify the relatively expensive lease. The office in the heart of the City, established in September 2012 and initially run by former BT Engage exec Chris Leah, was set up to win over more corporate customers and at one point housed upwards of 20 …
Paul Kunert, 03 Mar 2016
NEMA 5 plug socket

Amazon Shocker: Firm recalls Fire and Fire Kids power adapters

Amazon is the latest fondleslab maker to initiate a voluntary recall and exchange programme for potentially shock-inducing power adapters. The affected adapters for the seven inch Fire and Fire Kids Edition slabs were sold only in the UK and Republic of Ireland from September last year. “We have determined that, in rare cases …
Paul Kunert, 02 Mar 2016
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Tech Data signs data centre kit slinger Quanta in big local sales deal

Mega hardware vendors beware: the big gun Taiwanese contract manufacturers are stepping from out of the shadows to build local sales channels for their own branded hyper-scale bit barn gear. Tech Data, the world’s second largest IT distie, has inked a deal with Quanta Cloud Technology to sell servers, storage, network switches …
Paul Kunert, 02 Mar 2016
Prison

Former Systemax execs ordered to repay $35m to the biz

Two brothers who held high office at Systemax before being found guilty of perpetrating a multi-million pound swindle have been ordered to repay $35m to the company. Gilbert and Carl Fiorentino were sentenced in March 2015 to five and six years behind bars respectively for masterminding a $27m fraud at the reseller and one- …
Paul Kunert, 02 Mar 2016
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VMware second-in-command quits for venture cap land

Amid a flurry of senior personnel changes, VMware is parting with a long serving exec that joined when it was a fledgling virty biz. President and chief operations officer Carl Eschenbach is set to head out of the door marked exit, staff were told today in an internal memo. The company confirmed to us he is quitting …
Paul Kunert, 01 Mar 2016
Files in manager's desk drawers: manila folder marked "Redundancies". Image via shutterstock

IBM is to cut more than 1 in 8 from its UK Labs, say sources

IBM is taking the knife to the UK Labs team with more than one in eight staffers expected to get the chop, insiders have told us. The “Resource Actions” are expected to see 123 out of 900 divisional employees get made redundant following the start of a 45-day redundancy notice period. An Employee Consultation Committee has …
Paul Kunert, 29 Feb 2016