Microsoft To Converge System Builder, OEM Divisions

Posted by bink on March 21 2006, 7:22 PM. Posted in OEM system builder.

Microsoft is working to converge its system builder channel and OEM division organizations, the company confirmed Tuesday.

The change will take affect in Microsoft's fiscal year 2007 starting July 1.

System builders build custom "whitebox" or "whitebook" PCs and laptops, typically configuring them with the necessary operating system and other software for customers. They run the gamut from small mom-and-pop shops to large VARs.

Members of this constituency, which is responsible for a huge number of PCs on the market, have blasted Microsoft in the past for cutting favorable Office and Windows pricing deals with Dell and other direct-sales PC makers. Microsoft has maintained that volume PC makers get terms based on volume of product delivered.

Scott Di Valerio, corporate vice president of the OEM division will lead the combined group, working with Kurt Kolb on the transition.

Kolb is currently vice president of system builder and license compliance. It was unclear what his role will be going forward.

Microsoft "will continue to make investments to ensure local PC manufacturers have the tools, programs and benefits they need to succeed," the spokesman said via e-mail.

The company's stance is that the combination of the groups will result in better resource allocation.