Thu, May 24, 2012 - Page 11 News List

Asustek, Acer maintain their Q2 sales forecasts

EURO DEBT:Despite deepening concern over the EU crisis, the two computer vendors appeared confident of reaching their revenue growth targets this quarter

Staff writer, with CNA

Taiwanese PC vendors Asustek Computer Inc (華碩) and Acer Inc (宏碁) yesterday said they were maintaining their sales guidance for the second quarter despite the financial turmoil in Europe.

Asustek said inventory in Europe had returned to a healthy level after recent adjustments, adding that although concern over the European debt crisis remained, the impact on demand from end users appeared to be limited.

The company said it had left its target for the second quarter intact, anticipating that sales would continue to grow.

The comments came after computer shares on the Taiwan Stock Exchange took a beating amid rising concern over the eurozone’s debt problems. Europe is a major export destination for Taiwanese computers.

Dell’s disappointing results also contributed to the share price declines.

Asustek closed down 5.34 percent at NT$283.50, while Acer dropped 3.73 percent to NT$29.65, both underperforming the benchmark index, which fell 1.75 percent at 7,147.75 points.

Quanta Computer Inc (廣達), the world’s largest manufacturer of notebook computers, lost 4.19 percent to NT$77.80, and Compal Electronics Inc (仁寶), the world’s second-largest contract manufacturer of notebooks, was down 2.5 percent to NT$31.2.

In the first quarter of this year, the European market accounted for about 36 percent of Asustek’s total sales, while Europe, Middle East and Africa made up 37 percent of Acer’s total sales during the period.

In an investor conference held late last month, Asustek said it expected notebook shipments for the April-June period to rise 7 percent from a quarter earlier to 4.4 million units and shipments of netbook computers to grow 22 percent to 1.1 million units.

Asustek also forecast that shipments of tablet computers would double to 1.2 million units this quarter from the previous quarter, and that motherboard shipments would reach 5.5 million units, little changed from a quarter earlier.

For its part, Acer said it was sticking to the second-quarter guidance it gave late last month.

The company said then that sales would grow from the NT$113.04 billion recorded in the first quarter, while its operating margin would improve to 0.5 percent from the 0.1 percent registered in the first quarter.

Both Asustek and Acer said they had adopted measures to hedge against risks arising from a volatile euro, given worries over the debt crisis in the eurozone.

Asustek said the weakness of the euro was affecting consumption in Europe, and the company was keeping a close eye on the EU’s financial situation to guard against any adverse developments.

Market analysts forecast that Asustek’s sales for the second quarter would range between NT$95.5 billion and NT$100 billion, rising 5 to 10 percent from the first quarter, with an operating margin of about 5 percent.

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