Thu, Jun 22, 2017 - Page 12 News List

Acer CEO Jason Chen to double as firm’s chairman

By Lauly Li  /  Staff reporter

Acer Inc (宏碁) yesterday announced that CEO Jason Chen (陳俊聖) would double as the company’s chairman with immediate effect, granting him more power to operate the PC firm following George Huang’s (黃少華) decision to step down.

“I would like to thank Acer cofounders Stan Shih (施振榮) and George Huang for entrusting me with the helm of Acer,” Chen said in a statement after the board meeting.

Huang is to stay on as a board director, Acer said.

Chen, formerly Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co’s (台積電) senior vice president of global sales and marketing, was invited by Shih to take over as Acer’s CEO on Jan. 1, 2014, when the company posted net losses for two consecutive years in 2012 and 2013.

The company swung into profit in the first quarter of 2014 and posted 11 consecutive quarters of profits until the fourth quarter of last year.

Acer reported net losses of NT$4.9 billion (US$160.81 million) in the final quarter of last year due to an intangible asset impairment of NT$6.34 billion for its acquisition of cloud-computing firm iGare Inc in 2012.

In response to shareholders’ questions of potential impairment losses like that from iGare, Chen said Acer currently does not plan or have the capability to initiate large merger and acquisition (M&A) activities.

“We do not have the appetite to pursue large M&As. We will only do small-scale M&As or strategic investments to obtain new technologies as part of Acer’s corporate transformation,” Chen said at the firm’s annual shareholders’ meeting in New Taipei City earlier yesterday.

Acer’s operation has improved significantly compared with a few years ago, Chen said, with its revenue from gaming PCs surging 80 percent annually in the first five months of this year.

Chromebook shipments also jumped 80 percent from January to last month, compared with the same period last year, he said.

Chen said Acer would continue to focus on areas of growth, including gaming PCs, thin and light notebook computers, and two-in-one convertible notebooks, while accelerating Acer’s pace in new businesses, such as virtual reality and mixed reality for commercial use.

The board of directors also approved the appointment of Meggy Chen (陳怡如) as chief financial officer, effective Saturday next week, Acer said.

Incumbent chief financial officer Nancy Hu (胡競英), who has completed her term since taking office in May 2014, will move on from Acer as part of her career plan, Acer said.

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