Tue, Jan 17, 2012 - Page 11 News List

Acer revenues forecast to bottom out in first quarter

Staff Writer, with CNA

Taiwanese computer maker Acer Inc (宏碁) will resume revenue growth after the market bottoms out in the first quarter of this year, after completing a restructuring of its management team, Barclays Capital said on Sunday.

The investment bank said that Acer has completed its senior management reshuffle that started in March last year with the appointment of Eva Ho (何一華), who will serve as the new chief financial officer (CFO) and spokesperson, taking effect on March 1.

“We are positive on the CFO appointment as it marks the end of Acer’s senior management restructuring,” said Kirk Yang (楊應超), head of Asia ex-Japan tech hardware research, based at Barclays Bank, Hong Kong, in a research note.

BACK TO GROWTH

“We believe the finalization and stabilization of senior management could put Acer back on a growth trajectory again with initial results already showing quarter-on-quarter profitability improvements since the third quarter [of last year],” Yang said.

Yang added that Acer’s global PC market share also improved in the fourth quarter of last year.

According to market research firm International Data Corp, Acer’s market share rose to 10.6 percent in the fourth quarter from 10 percent in the third quarter, ending four quarterly declines since the fourth quarter of 2010.

With a stabilized management team, low channel inventory of four to six weeks and an impressive product line-up that includes Ultrabook lightweight laptops, Barclays Capital said that the first quarter of this year should mark the bottom of the market this year for Acer.

ABOVE AVERAGE

It expects Acer’s profitability to improve quarter by quarter throughout this year, after a 10 to 15 percent quarter-on-quarter revenue decline in the first quarter, which would still be an improvement on the industry’s predicted average decline of 15 to 20 percent.

The bank maintained its “overweight” rating and target price of NT$45 for Acer, which closed 1.88 percent lower at NT$36.6 yesterday.

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