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DELL EARNINGS

EMC deal helping boost Dell’s revenue: Dell Technologies’ decision to buy data storage giant EMC Corp. is proving a boost to the Round Rock-based tech giant’s revenue.

Dell last week reported 19 percent year-over-year revenue growth for its fiscal first quarter, with revenue increasing from $18 billion a year ago to $21.4 billion. The company is the largest private employer in Central Texas with about 14,000 local workers.

The company said its revenue growth was driven by a 41 percent jump in its server and networking business, as well as 10 percent growth in its storage operations and 12 percent gain in revenue from VMware, a cloud computing company Dell acquired control of through the EMC purchase.

While Dell is privately held, it reports its finances due to a stock created from the $67 billion EMC acquisition in 2016.

“Roughly 20 months since the EMC transaction, we have many things going well,” Tom Sweet, Dell’s chief financial officer, said in a call with investors. “We are taking the right long-term steps, but we expect progress to be a multi-year journey.”

Despite its revenue boost since purchasing EMC, the company is still burdened by debt brought on by the acquisition, and it is still losing money.

Dell lost $636 million in its fiscal first quarter, down 46 percent from the same quarter a year ago but up from the $511 million it lost in its previous quarter.

Dell’s debt remains at $52.7 billion, unchanged from the previous quarter. The company has paid about $13 billion in gross debt since the EMC buyout.

Sweet said the company is “financially strong” and intends to pay down $5 billion in total debt this year.

Dell continues to weigh a variety of strategic options, including whether to pursue an initial public offering or reverse merger with VMware in order to raise capital.

Weeks ago, Dell said in a securities filing that it is also considering converting private stock held by CEO Michael Dell and other investors into publicly traded DVMT stock, which would also be expected to raise money.

ARMY SEARCH

U.S. Army officials visit Austin amid search for Futures Command site: U.S. Army officials visited Austin last week to evaluate the city as a possible site for a new operational arm that will be focused on developing new military technologies, an Army spokesman said.

The military officials are considering Austin for the Army’s Futures Command center, which will be the fourth command-level operation in the Army. Austin is the third city to be visited within the past week or so, Army Col. Patrick Seiber said. Army officials have also visited Boston and Raleigh, N.C.

Officials previously said the project will be the most significant reorganization since 1973. In announcing plans for the center earlier this year, they described the new operation’s objectives this way: “Modernizes the Army for the future… will integrate the future operational environment, threat and technologies to develop and deliver future force requirements, designing future force organizations, and delivering materiel capabilities.”

In April, Austin was reported to be one of 15 cities to be named among the finalists for the Futures Command, which is expected to employ about 500 people. Dallas and Houston were also on the finalists list.

A team of about five Army officials will be in town for the next few days to meet with elected officials and view potential sites, Seiber said. The Army Futures Command Task Force is looking to lease a space and will primarily examine buildings in downtown and in North Austin, he said.

It’s unclear what the visit might mean for Austin’s prospects of landing the Futures Command center.

“They will be taking a look at what type of facilities there are that are suitable to host a four-star command, where the four-star general is going to live and how much work will need to be done,” Seiber said. “They are going to factor in costs and how long it will take and what might be available.”

Seiber said a decision on the site could be made by the end of the month.

The Futures Command center is expected to lead innovation for the Army’s top six modernization projects, including improvement to its tactical missile system, combat vehicles and helicopters, defense teams and weapons.

Army officials have indicated that they are seeking a high-tech, creative culture for the location, rather than a traditionally structured Army post. This, officials have said, should include a local workforce with experience in biomedicine, chemistry, computer hardware and software, electronics, materials and mechanical systems.

“What we’re looking for is to be in a city that has talent, that is innovative, that we have access to academia who are leading thinkers,” Seiber said. “We want to partner with the best and brightest.”



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