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Dell Computer, a Fortune 500 company based in Round Rock, Texas, was founded
by Michael Dell in 1984 but did business under the name PC's Limited. In
1987, the company became Dell Computer Corporation. Dell Computer is perhaps
best known for the personal computers it designs, manufactures and sells for
home and office use, but Dell is also in the enterprise computing market
with servers, storage devices, network switches and computer cluster lines.
Personal Digital Assistants, software & peripherals, including printers,
rounds out Dell's product offerings.
In 1999, Dell overtook Compaq to become the largest seller of personal
computers in the United States. In 2002, Dell lost the lead to
Hewlett-Packard, which acquired Compaq in 2002. In Q1 2003 Dell again
regained the lead.
To recognize the company's expansion beyond computers, the stockholders
approved changing the company name to Dell, Inc. at the annual company
meetng in 2003.
The Dell direct business model, which eliminates the middleman, is known for
its speed of sale-to-delivery of the company's products. Dell builds
computers to order. This keeps its inventory costs low. Also, in this
business model, the product is paid for before it is built. This gives Dell
a negative cash conversion cycle.
A support division of Dell is Dell International Services.
Dell was incorporated as a Texas corporation in 1984 with a capitalization
of US$1000, the minimum allowed by Texas law. In June 2003, Dell, now a
Delaware corporation, had a market capitalization of US$80 billion and
revenues (FY 2003) of approximately US$31 billion. Dell stock is floated on
the Nasdaq stock exchange in New York under the symbol DELL.