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Momentum in notebook market and healthy consumer growth drive EMEA PC sales to 10.4 percent in fourth quarter of 2006, says IDC

Momentum in notebook market and healthy consumer growth drive EMEA PC sales to 10.4 percent in fourth quarter of 2006, says IDC

Acer, Taiwan's flagship computer brand, enjoyed robust growth in the PC markets of Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) in the final quarter of 2006, ousting Dell from the No. 2 spot, preliminary data released by a market research firm showed.
IDC attributed Acer's stellar sales performance to its strong product line-up and competitive desktop offering during the said period.
"Acer continued to deliver a robust performance and dethroned Dell (in the fourth quarter of 2006) in second place in the overall EMEA ranking," IDC said.
"The Taiwanese vendor maintained pressure and the lead position in the EMEA notebook market, thanks to a strong product line-up during the Christmas quarter in both the retail and SMB (small- and medium-sized business) channels, while a stronger and very competitive desktop offering enabled the vendor to gain significant share and take third position in the desktop space."
Overall, IDC said the fourth quarter of 2006 delivered a performance in line with its forecasts, with EMEA PC shipments reaching over 24.6 million units and growing by 10.4 percent compared with the same quarter of the previous year.
Fourth quarter sales brought growth to 11 percent for the full year 2006, with more than 75 million PCs shipped in the region, it added.
Continued portable adoption, healthy consumer sales, and ongoing expansion in Central Europe, Middle East and Africa (CEMA) this quarter have again led to sustained growth of PC sales in the region, with notebook growth continuing to outpace the market at 28 percent year-on-year while desktops failed to return to positive trends.
Slow commercial demand had a negative impact on growth for Dell, Fujitsu Siemens, and Lenovo. Nevertheless, HP and Acer leveraged their strength in the consumer and SMB markets to capture share, with Acer ousting Dell from the No. 2 spot in the region in the fourth quarter.
"This year has clearly marked, through the accelerated development of the notebook market, the importance of effective and time-to-market product strategies and the need for vendors to develop stronger branding strategies," said Karine Paoli, a research director for IDC's EMEA Personal Computing group.
"Competitive pricing and the ability to promote technology replacement cycles effectively will remain essential to drive demand and market share, but branding and customer segmentation will become increasingly important as the market continues to expand and include a larger renewal base."
IDC said laptops continued to spur on overall PC sales across the region in the fourth quarter. Growth in Western Europe for portable PCs maintained healthy trends, as anticipated, at 20 percent, while expansion continued in the Central and Eastern Europe and Middle East and Africa regions with more than 60 percent and 50 percent respectively, the market research firm added.
Demand for notebooks continued unabated in the consumer space during the Christmas quarter, fueled by very attractive offerings and price points in the mainstream 15.4-inch segment and in the wider sizes, the uptake of dual-core processors, and active marketing campaigns.
Consumer desktop sales however maintained disappointing trends and failed to display a return to positive growth in Western Europe, IDC said.
"The consumer desktop market should benefit from the migrations to Vista in 2007 but a revived interest in deskbound platforms will very much depend on the vendors' and the channel's ability to promote the next digital entertainment generation of consumer PCs," Elsa Opitz, a research manager for IDC's EMEA PC Tracker, said in a statement.
On the commercial side, slow demand overall continued to affect the vendors' performances, in particular in the desktop space, while commercial notebook sales continued to display healthier patterns, driven by strong desktop replacement trends still evident in the SMB space and increasing demand for portable PCs in the corporate space.
"While 2007 will benefit from an uptake of corporate refresh cycles expected to start mid-2007 and peak in 2008, migrations to Vista in the consumer and SMB space, along with continued portable adoption across the region, and an increasing renewal market, will also continue to represent key market opportunities and assist EMEA growth moving forward," Paoli said.
IDC said HP recorded a strong final quarter of the year and further reinforced its leadership in EMEA, outpacing the market at close to 28 percent growth. The vendor continued to demonstrate its strength across the region, illustrated with the first position regained in the UK market.
"A strong and well-balanced product portfolio, an effective go-to-market strategy, and one of the best ever advertising campaigns with 'The Computer is Personal Again' all boosted HP's performance throughout the year in both the consumer and commercial markets," the industry tracker said.
Dell recorded another soft quarter, continuing to suffer from slow commercial demand and fierce competition from HP, while the direct vendor also suffers from intense competition in the consumer space and from the retail channel in Western Europe, it added.
"The vendor nevertheless continued to demonstrate strong gains in both the Central and Eastern Europe and Middle East and Africa regions and maintains second position in the EMEA ranking for the full year 2006," said IDC.


Updated : 2021-10-19 06:59 GMT+08:00