Only two months into Aymar de Lencquesaing’s appointment as the new president of Lenovo North America, the French-native executive made his first formal visit to Lenovo’s Canadian headquarters in Markham, ON. to survey the landscape and meet with customers.
CDN got the chance to speak with him and get a sense of his initial impressions of Canada.
CDN Now: This is your first tour of Canada as the new president of Lenovo North America. What are some of your observations of the Canadian market so far and what goals or challenges do you foresee?
Aymar de Lencquesaing: I see mostly opportunity. We’re doing well in the Canadian market but there are plenty of pockets of growth. We do extremely well in the large enterprise market – nearly one in two enterprises in this market source Lenovo products – but overall our market share in the PC side is 14 per cent, and worldwide we’re 20 per cent, so we’re underindexed in the Canadian market. This spells out opportunity, especially in the consumer segment. We’re a single-digit market share now and should be able to double or even triple our market share very quickly.
CDN Now: The Canadian channel doesn’t know you very well yet. What would you tell them is your philosophy to the channel?
De Lencquesaing: The number one philosophy that we built the company on is we are totally dedicated to the channel. That usually works very well, we try to make simple programs that we have now unified and integrated with the server business, so it’s “one size fits all.” We channel most of the business through business partners.
CDN Now: With Windows Server 2003 support ending and the release of Windows 10 just around the corner, are there any updates to Lenovo’s server and PC strategies?
De Lencquesaing: We have now totally merged the product families that we had with Lenovo on the server side – the ThinkServer – and the x86 product family. Now we run a very comprehensive and complete series of products ranging from the rack and tower devices to the converged systems and densities and blades. So with that we’re well-positioned to attack the market, and some of it may see a bit of growth because of the Windows Server 2003 [end of support].
As for Windows 10, we’re also quite excited because in most times in this industry that Windows has had a new release, it has spurred an interest in products and an opportunity to renew those products. The early reports that we have seen and read about on Windows 10 are very promising.
CDN Now: Lenovo also has North American manufacturing, which seems to go against the trend of making everything in lower-cost countries. Have you seen any business advantages of manufacturing in the US?
De Lencquesaing: You have a lot of flexibility to respond to demand because you can configure the systems closer to the customer. The proximity to the customer and the flexibility it gives you is the main advantage.
CDN Now: Do you have any unique approaches to Quebec’s French-speaking market?
De Lencquesaing: When in Rome, do as Romans do. When in Quebec, I hope to get there soon and practice my native French, as you know. I was actually born and raised in France, and our products will be delivered and supported in the French language.