It's taken two years and over $21 million to get there, but Acer Computer Australia has clinched third position in the PC market share race for Q1, 2002 and has become recognised as the fastest growing brand in the country.
With its $15 million investment in its Sydney-based assembly facility two years ago and a $6 million investment in the Acer Partner eCommerce (APeC) platform, the computer manufacturer has begun to see some returns.
According to Gartner Group's Dataquest May 2002 report, Acer finished behind Compaq and Dell in market share for the first quarter of the year. Andy Woo, PC analyst at Gartner, said the recent results show Acer is becoming more of a mainstream vendor and is now competing with the established players.
That said, Woo claims Acer's 140 per cent growth in Q1, 2002 compared with the first quarter of 2001 has come from a very small base. Acer generated significant volume sales in the first quarter based on a handful of large government and public sector deals.
"[Acer] is still a fairly cyclic, or seasonal, vendor," said Woo. "But they do have some good programs."
Charles Chung, managing director of Acer Computer Australia, attributes the growth to the support of Acer's channel and its APeC platform, which has seen the Acer brand featured more prominently in the home and SME markets.
Overall, the PC market recorded slight growth in the first quarter of 3.6 per cent, compared to the same period last year, while the portable market recorded a year-on-year growth of 13 per cent over the same period last year, the report said.
Woo said there were a number of key driving factors fuelling growth in the portable market. These include wireless applications, growing end-user awareness of productivity gained from using a portable PC, and narrowing performance gaps between desktop PCs and portable PCs.