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Dell pushes Chinese business with $125bn in local investments

Thu 10 Sep 2015

Michael Dell and Chinese flag

Dell has set in place a five-year plan to expand its Chinese business, investing $125bn (approx. £81bn) and forming partnerships to develop its AI strategy.

The American IT giant announced that it would start its new Chinese collaborations with the state-owned Chinese Academy of Sciences, establishing an artificial intelligence and advanced computing lab. The lab will be tasked with investigating application models for brain information processing, cognitive function simulation, and deep learning.

Dell will also boost staffing at its own research and development department in the country, which currently employs 2,000 senior engineers, to concentrate on emerging technologies targeting the Chinese market.

As seen with other U.S. tech firms trying to crack the difficult market, Dell looks to be engineering regional investments and partnerships within China to woo government bodies and private businesses.

The PC maker’s CEO Michael Dell said that the new strategy would push $175bn into imports and exports, as well as supporting over a million Chinese jobs, in line with the country’s economic development and related policies.

Dell also suggested that it would participate in the Internet Plus scheme, announced by Chinese premier Li Keqiang in March, which encourages deeper integration between tech firms and economic and social sectors. The company confirmed an agreement with local software developer Kingsoft – a strategic partnership to co-create the Dell-Kingsoft Cloud which will mark the beginning of its intended regional growth in the cloud and big data arenas.

Dell Ventures, the company’s capital investment arm, is also moving into China, focusing on emerging technology startups in the fields of storage, cloud, next generation data centres, big data, mobility and security.

Dell said that the Chinese investment plans highlight its ‘long-term commitment’ to China, the company’s second-largest market outside of the U.S. and a new area for growth and exploration given its dwindling PC sales.

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