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Acer riding high in PC maker rankings, says analyst

Posted: 15 Feb 2005 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:ibm? pc? lenovo? issupli?

Acer Inc. has moved one step closer to attaining its goal of being among the top three PC makers within the next few years, but it may see its recent progress stymied by Lenovo Group's pending acquisition of IBM's PC division.

The Taiwanese PC maker broke into the top five in sales last year, according to a report by data tracker iSuppli Corp. The information echoed recent reports by two other market research firms, Gartner and IDC.

iSuppli said Acer racked up the strongest growth among the top ten PC makers in 2004, with sales rising to 6.4 million units, up 44 percent from 4.5 million in 2003. That growth rate handily bested market leader Dell, which turned in an impressive 22.8 percent gain.

"Acer has credited its strong performance to its direct-channel business model. The company said its strategy of dealing directly with computer resellers has allowed it increased efficiency, while getting closer to its customers," iSuppli said.

The firm said worldwide PC shipments jumped 13.4 percent to reach 191.4 million units in 2004, up from 168.8 million in 2003. Notebook PCs, in particular, did well with a 22.1 percent rise in shipments, pushing mobiles to 24 percent of the PC market.

Acer's strongest asset is its notebook division in Europe, which is ranked No. 1. Overall, the firm's 3.4 percent market share pushed it past Toshiba Corp. to take fifth place, and this year it may be able to overtake fourth-ranked Fujitsu-Siemens at 3.7 percent. But if Lenovo's acquisition of IBM's PC division is approved by US officials, it may prove extremely difficult for Acer to displace the combined entity, which would have an assumed 7.7 percent market share and a lock on the third place division.

Dell's first-place share came in at 16.4 percent, up 1.2 percentage points; Hewlett Packard was second at 14.5 percent, down 0.4 percentage points; and IBM was third with 5.4 percent, up 0.1 percentage points.

iSuppli said PC growth will moderate this year, as the corporate "Y2K bubble cycle comes to an end and the market settles down to a more normal replacement rate." Sales will increase 8.2 percent this year and maintain a compound annual growth rate of 10 percent from 2004 to 2009, the firm predicted.

- Mike Clendenin

EE Times





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