The nation's personal computer makers should diversify their overseas markets and expand in the massive but competitive China market, industry watchers said yesterday. \n"Taiwanese computer manufacturers cannot forget the China market but, meanwhile, they should expand their business to other countries," Kitty Fok (霍錦潔), vice president of the central research group at IDC Asia Pacific, told reporters at a briefing on the PC market. \nThe Chinese market is highly competitive, with globally renowned brands like IBM and Dell battling with leading local brands such as Legend, Fok said, adding that the margin was relatively low compared to other markets. \nAcer Inc, Taiwan's third-largest computer company by sales, provides a good model for diversifying markets, she said. \nOf Acer's PC shipments last year, 63 percent went to Europe, according to the company. Acer declined to reveal its total PC shipments for the year. \nIt was ranked fourth in Western Europe's PC market last year -- behind HP, Dell and Fujitsu -- with sales of 2.52 million units, 50.7 percent more than the previous year. \nAcer's laptops were the No. 1 seller in some European countries, including Italy, Germany and the Netherlands. It was also No. 1 in Taiwan last year with 20 percent market share, followed by HP and IBM. It was the leading brand in some Asian countries, such as India and Indonesia, Fok said. \nPC sales in Western Europe are expected to grow 12 percent this year, mainly through replacement demand. Demand in the Asia-Pacific region will rise 14 percent, driven by demand from countries with a low penetration for PCs, according to IDC. \nDesktop PCs will still dominate the Asia-Pacific market, making up about 80 percent of the market for the next five years, because they are around half the price of a notebook, Fok said. \nSales in Taiwan are expected to be around 1.5 million units this year, a 7 percent increase on last year, as the market already saw a strong pick-up in the second half of last year fuelled by a stable economy and replacement demand after the SARS epidemic. \n"Replacement demand and consumer needs remain the driving force in the market," Fok said, adding that mobility is the key to success. \nLaptops are estimated to grow as a percentage of total computer sales in Taiwan to 37 percent, up 1 percentage point from last year, rising to 42 percent by 2008. \n"Notebooks are expected to grow 4 percentage points to 17 percent of 26 million PC shipments this year and price erosion will continue to support its growth," Fok said, predicting notebooks would make up 20 percent of all PCs sold in China in 2008. \nPC prices will remain stable, with makers absorbing the rise in raw material prices to remain competitive, Fok said. \nThe average price of a PC this year may drop 5 percent from last year, according to the IDC.
Softbank Group Corp plans to keep a stake in the chip designer Arm Ltd, even if it sells a partial interest to Nvidia Corp, the Nikkei reported. The companies are negotiating terms, the newspaper reported, citing sources. Softbank might take a stake in Nvidia after it buys Arm, the report said. Nvidia and Arm might also merge through a share swap, and Softbank would become a major shareholder in the combined company, it said. The two parties aim to reach a deal in the next few weeks, the sources said, asking not to be identified because the information is private. Nvidia is the
END TO SPECULATION: The hotel’s management contract has been extended, despite reports that it wanted to end its alliance with Hyatt Hotels over a deal with Riant Capital Singapore-based Hong Leong Hotel Development Ltd (豐隆大飯店股份) yesterday said it has extended a management contract to ensure the continued presence of the Grand Hyatt brand in Taipei, ending rumors that the two sides were parting ways. “We are pleased Hyatt is able to come to terms on the extension of the management contract of Grand Hyatt Taipei,” said Kwek Leng Beng (郭令明), executive chairman of City Developments Ltd (城市發展) and Millennium & Copthorne Hotels Ltd (千禧國敦酒店). Hong Leong Hotel Development is a subsidiary of Millennium, and both fall under the Hong Leong Group (豐隆集團). The Grand Hyatt Taipei (台北君悅大飯店), owned and built by
Gold surged to a fresh record on Friday, fueled by US dollar weakness and low interest rates, while silver headed for its best month since 1979. Spot bullion is up more than 10 percent this month, as US real yields lingered near record lows. While the ferocity of rallies in gold and silver cooled in the middle of the week, most market watchers predict there might be more gains ahead. Both metals have added about 30 percent this year, with gold and silver exchange-traded funds boosting holdings to a record, as concern about the fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic fuels demand for
MOVING FROM CHINA? The article did not name the company, but Foxconn, Wistron and Pegatron were among firms chosen for a production-linked incentive plan in India An Apple Inc vendor is looking at shifting six production lines to India from China, which could result in US$5 billion of iPhone exports from the South Asian nation, the Times of India reported, citing people familiar with the matter who it did not identify. The establishment of the facility would create about 55,000 jobs over about a year, the newspaper reported, not naming the Apple vendor. It would also cater to the domestic market and expand operations to include tablets and laptops, the newspaper reported. Samsung Electronics Co and Apple’s assembly partners are among 22 companies that have pledged 110 billion