Cutthroat Dell

Adam Lashinsky on why Dell is, "the meanest kid on the block".

Business isn't about making friends. It's about winning, fair and square. Perhaps no technology company is better at it than Dell.

Exhibit A is Dell's exquisite timing last month in introducing a round of price cuts. There's nothing unusual about price cuts in the PC industry. Dell's just happened to come the day after HP announced that it had botched its most recent quarter, sending its stock price downward.

Exhibit B is the way Dell is slapping around Sun Microsystems. A recent Dell ad aimed at business customers boasted that a Dell server running Linux software and using an Intel processor was 89 percent faster and 39 percent less expensive than a comparable Sun box running its own chips.

I owned some stock in Dell for a couple years in the late 90s, and I wish I had never sold it. I am amazed that given all Dell's success, few companies have attempted to copy their business model.