What is an OEM?

An OEM, or "original equipment manufacturer", makes a part or component used in another company’s product. For example, Ford uses windshields from PPG, an OEM.

OEM definition

An Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) makes components of another company’s products. An OEM component might be a part, a subsystem, or software. Examples include operating systems (OS) and microprocessors in computers. Typically, the computer manufacturer makes neither the microprocessor nor the OS. Rather, the computer maker buys these on an OEM basis from other companies. In this sense, OEM can also be used as a verb, as in "to OEM a part" from another business.

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Why OEMs?

Working with OEMs can save a company a great deal of time and effort. Instead of developing and manufacturing a component, a business can simply acquire someone else’s design and leverage their expertise and support organisation to benefit their own product. OEM relationships enable a business to focus on their core competencies. For the OEM itself, the customer essentially becomes a volume sales channel, e.g., PPG benefits from Ford selling its windshields as built-in parts of their cars.


HPE has more than six decades of experience as an OEM. With HPE as your OEM partner, you can build the value of your brand on the value of ours. You get to work with a supplier that provides excellent support on a global basis and offers top quality products at competitive costs. HPE has a proven history as an OEM that understands the unique needs of its customers, offering advanced notification of lifecycle events, product customization, and third party integration.