Newly private Dell goes a little bit cloud nutty with new alliances

Michael Dell appears to be enjoying life as the CEO of a newly private company, free from the constraints of all those pesky shareholders.

At Dellworld 2013 on Thursday he shared the stage with a shiny Tesla (and later with Tesla founder Elon Musk) and announced a spate of new cloud partnerships — with Google(s goog), CenturyLink(s ctl), and Microsoft(s msft) Azure and Peer1 Hosting. I’m not sure what that really means in practice, other than generating ink like this, but a new sales pact with Dropbox is of note since Dropbox is making a big push for its business version (Dropbox for Business) and Dell is still a power in many business accounts, so that might bear fruit. Or not.

But back to these public cloud partnerships. To recap, Dell already has said it will back several public clouds — Joyent, Scalemetrix and ZeroLag — along with its own special OpenStack private cloud. So it looks like that exclusive club just got a lot less exclusive.

Update: On the private cloud side of the house, Dell said it is repackaging Red Hat’s OpenStack-based private cloud to offer to customers through a “dedicated” practice within Dell Cloud Services. That makes Dell the first third-party company to “OEM” the Red Hat Enterprise OpenStack cloud. Dell and Red Hat are long time partners on other fronts and I’m not exactly clear on what, if anything, that means to Dell’s exciting OpenStack private cloud and will update when I hear.

Update: A Dell spokeswoman said that Dell will continue to work on its own private cloud implementations, like Dell OpenStack-Powered Cloud.

Note: This story was updated at 9:21 a.m. PST with additional information on the Red Hat partnership and againa t 9:45 a.m. PST with Dell clarification on its private cloud plans.