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Acer ousts Dell for No. 2 place in EMEA region in 4th quarter

Acer ousts Dell for No. 2 place in EMEA region in 4th quarter

Acer, Taiwan's flagship computer brand, enjoyed robust growth in the PC markets of Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) in the final quarter of 2006, ousting Dell in 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, IDC said.
Slow commercial demand had a negative impact on growth for Dell, Fujitsu Siemens, and Lenovo, the industry tracker continued. 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 laptops 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.
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.