Dell CEO Michael Dell received a surprising answer from Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin in a question round at the World Economic forum in Davos, Switzerland.
After Putin's keynote speech, Dell asked Putin how how his company can help to expand IT in Russia. Putin replied Russia doesn't need help, and stated they're not invalids with limited mental capacity. And, in a final slap at Dell, he said Russian scientists are mainly working on the software, implicating building PCs is child's play.
Russia has been allergic to offers of aid from the West ever since hundreds of overpaid consultants arrived in Moscow after the collapse of Communism, in 1991, and proceeded to hand out an array of advice that proved, at times, useless or dangerous.
Putin's withering reply to Dell: "We don't need help. We are not invalids. We don't have limited mental capacity." The slapdown took many of the people in the audience by surprise. Putin then went on to outline some of the steps the Russian government has taken to wire up the country, including remote villages in Siberia. And, in a final dig at Dell, he talked about how Russian scientists were rightly respected not for their hardware, but for their software. The implication: Any old fool can build a PC outfit.