[Beowulf] SGI and Sun: In Memoriam

Joe Landman landman at scalableinformatics.com
Thu Apr 2 05:28:31 PDT 2009

Huw Lynes wrote:
> On Thu, 2009-04-02 at 10:49 +0200, Kilian CAVALOTTI wrote:
>> On Wednesday 01 April 2009 17:48:56 you wrote:
>>> A point I
>>> didn't make in my blog post on this stuff is that the academic side,
>>> while a nice market to play in, isn't terribly profitable.  You have to
>>> give "killer" discounts to play in many cases.  Which in the case of a
>>> low margin commodity business, is, in a real sense, a killer.
>> But aren't those killer discounts paid back in image building and 
>> advertisement savings? It would make sense for companies to invest in some 
>> academic partnerships/projects, to make the buzz, and build up an image of 
>> performance, reliability and trust. Something along the lines of: "see, this 
>> prestigious university/institution is using that company's product line, and 
>> they must know what they're talking about, so I should do it too."
> Also it's not like big discounts don't exist in the corporate world.
> Back when I worked for $multinational our group rates with Dell were
> astonishingly cheap. 

Not specific to Dell, but I hear this a bit from some of our customers 
with purchase agreements tying them to one vendor.  So I often propose a 
simple challenge.  I ask them to configure a specific system, and I do 
the same.  We come back and compare pricing.

After the IT person picks their jaw up off the floor, we discuss how we 
can help them.  Price isn't everything, but it does make serious headway 
in IT groups.

But to the point, "deep" discounts generally are not as deep as you 
might think.  Companies still need to make money to live.  You can't 
lose money on every sale and make it up in volume.

Joseph Landman, Ph.D
Founder and CEO
Scalable Informatics LLC,
email: landman at scalableinformatics.com
web  : http://www.scalableinformatics.com
phone: +1 734 786 8423 x121
fax  : +1 866 888 3112
cell : +1 734 612 4615

More information about the Beowulf mailing list