Sun to roll SunExpress into SMCC
Move likely to lessen conflicts between Sun, SunExpress, and VARs
San Francisco (April 25, 1997) -- Sun's customers may be the losers from what the company is calling a "routine company reorg" that will see Sun's direct-sales planet, SunExpress, cease to exist as an independent business unit. It will fold into the waiting arms of Sun Microsystems Computer Company. Sun is being tight-lipped about the whole affair. A company spokesperson would only confirm the move and add that "there is no intent to geographically move it (SunExpress), nor will jobs be affected in the near term."
SunExpress, located at Sun's Chelmsford, MA campus, employs about 250. Its annual revenues are estimated to be in the $300 million range.
Apparently an internal transition team has been created to facilitate the change, and Sun is not saying which, if any, of SunExpress's product offerings would be affected or when the transition will occur.
Referring to the shuffle, a Sun spokesman says "this is a combination of activities meant to serve customers better" by providing a united (SMCC) front. But there is speculation in the industry that Sun's dealers have not been happy with moves like SunExpress's recent deal to offer products and services from Cisco and its Cisco-certified service suppliers. Certainly SunExpress has always had to watch itself, so as not to threaten Sun and its reseller channels.
Sun's business units are traditionally encouraged to operate independently and to treat their sister planets as they would any other customer; the idea being that the individual business units will then make decisions that are best for its customers rather than company politics. SMCC has, for example, bundled software products that compete with those of its sister planet, SunSoft (see "Veritas says Sun will dump DiskSuite," in Resources below).
Sun would not say whether its SunExpress product line would be affected by the move.
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