Tue, Apr 05, 2011 - Page 12 News List

Acer must work to retain top talent: Digitimes analyst

Staff writer, with CNA

Acer Inc (宏碁), the world’s second-largest personal computer vendor, needs to focus on retaining top talent in key markets and strengthen ties with distributors following the departure of chief executive and president Gianfranco Lanci, according to a Taipei-based research firm.

In 2009, Europe, North America and China accounted for more than 70 percent of Acer’s total sales and those markets benefited from Lanci’s leadership because of his sales expertise, Joanne Chien (簡佩萍), a senior analyst with Digitimes Research, said in a statement recently.

“The priority for Acer now is to keep an eye on Lanci’s subordinates who are in charge of these regional businesses to prevent them from being recruited by competitors,” she said.

That way, “the company will be able to maintain its good relationship with distributors that Lanci had stressed as the head of the major markets,” she said.

Compared with other leading PC brands such as Dell, Hewlett-Packard and Lenovo (聯想), Acer was late in entering the rapidly growing tablet PC market, as it focused on sales and marketing rather than research and development, Chien said.

The Taiwanese company, with chairman J.T. Wang (王振堂) now at the helm, will have to put more effort in the mobile device market and create a new business model that capitalizes on its existing advantages, Chien said.

Acer’s board of directors on Thursday approved Lanci’s resignation after different views emerged in recent months between the Italian manager and the board on several major issues.

There was widespread speculation that the main point of contention was Lanci’s push to increase market share at the expense of profitability.

A statement released by the company said differences existed over issues, such as “the company’s scale, growth, customer value creation, brand position enhancement, resource allocation and methods of implementation.”

Lanci had played a large role in the company, serving concurrently in two positions — CEO and president, as well as president of Acer’s Europe, Middle East, Africa, or EMEA, division. He resigned from both posts.

The company said the change would not affect current operations.

“Acer will continue to push for globalization, follow its multi-brand and channel business model, develop competitive products and services and foster closer relations with key vendors and channel partners,” the statement said.

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