Wed, Nov 17, 2004 - Page 10 News List

Asustek grabs bigger market share in China

NOTEBOOK SALES The company grabbed a 5.6 percent market share in the last quarter, propelling it into sixth spot overall, according to a Chinese researcher


Asustek Computer Co (華碩電腦) made significant progress in the fast-growing Chinese computer market, beating top rivals from Taiwan and South Korea in the third quarter, a Chinese researcher reported yesterday.

In the quarter ended September, Asustek expanded its share in China's laptop computer market to 5.4 percent, up from 4.6 percent a year ago, ICT (信息產業中心) said in its latest tally.

With the expansion of its market position, Asustek was ranked the No.6 notebook computer vendor in China last quarter, up from ninth a year earlier, according to ICT.

Asustek entered China's computer market around three years ago under the brandname ASUS. The company, however, is not in a hurry to sell more own-brand electronics there such as mobile phones due to stiff competition.

"We will consider making handsets for Chinese brands as our first step," said Sunny Han (韓德行), a global brand marketing manager of Asustek.

The company's Chinese operations are expected to make up 10 percent of total sales, a level similar to last year, Han said.

The growth rate, however, will be as high as 40 percent, as Asustek's sales this year are expected to rise to NT$280 billion, from NT$200 billion last year, analysts forecast.

Asustek, the world's top computer motherboard maker, successfully branched into the notebook computer business several year ago.

Notebook computer sales are expected to make up more than a third of its total sales this year, an amount similar to the contribution from its core business.

Compared to Asustek's marked improvement in China, Acer, the world's fifth largest computer vendor, suffered a setback in the three-month period to September due to the ongoing restructuring of its distribution network.

Acer slipped out of the top 10 rankings of notebook computer brands in China in the quarter. The company ranked No.7 in the third quarter of last year.

"Asustek has an advantage in the clone market, where it gained a foothold in motherboard business, to sell its brand-name laptops," Frank Chi (紀鈞中), an analyst with Grand Cathay Securities Co (大華證券) said.

Overall, laptop computer sales in the world's fastest-growing market grew 30.5 percent to 544,400 units in the third quarter, from 407,600 a year earlier.

That represented a 17.7 percent expansion quarter on quarter.

No big market share changes occurred among the five largest brands, according to ICT's report. IBM Inc of the US took over from Lenovo Group Ltd (聯想) as the top brand. Lenovo slid to second place, while Dell Inc was unchanged at third position.

Toshiba Corp of Japan and Hewlett-Packard Co of the US followed in fourth and fifth positions.

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