Asustek posts sales drop after delayed shipments

By Helen Ku  /  Staff reporter

Tue, Jul 09, 2013 - Page 13

Asustek Computer Inc (華碩) yesterday posted a 12.63 percent quarter-on-quarter drop in its second quarter sales, saying that delayed shipment of new products was the main cause of the larger-than-expected decline.

During the April-to-June quarter, consolidated revenue slid to NT$99.63 billion (US$3.31 billion) from NT$114.04 billion the previous quarter, Asustek said.

On an annual basis, the second-quarter figure represented a 3.98 percent decline from NT$103.77 billion during the same period last year.

Asustek, the world’s fifth-largest notebook maker by shipments, originally expected a sequential sales decline of less than 10 percent in the second quarter.

However, because the company could not begin shipments of new products launched during Taiwan’s annual Computex fair — including Android and Windows-powered Asus Transformer Book Trio laptops and low-priced MeMO Pad tablet due to its supply chain’s limited capacity, the company lacked sales drivers last quarter, Asustek investor relationship officer Peter Chang (張穎傑) said by telephone.

“We expect new product shipments to increase sales this quarter,” Chang said.

Due to the rise of tablets and smartphones, Asustek saw its desktop and notebook market share decline at a steady pace from last year, despite Microsoft Corp’s upgrades to its Windows 8 operating system and Intel Corp’s new chip products, Chang said.

“Once available, the upgraded version of the Windows 8 operating system [Windows 8.1] may help drive firms’ PC sales, but the heat will not last longer than two quarters, unless Microsoft makes more improvements to the platform by adding features which cannot be replaced by tablets or smartphones,” Chang said.

Asked whether Asustek plans to adjust its business strategies and start manufacturing more smartphones and tablets rather than laptops and desktops, Chang said the company has no intention of expanding into the smartphone market as fast as China’s Lenovo Group Ltd (聯想).

“We do not regard smartphones as our main priority for this year and next year. We want to enter this market step by step because there are risks involved in selling such products,” Chang said.