PCs flat but stable

PCs flat but stable

Despite a few end-of-financial-year peaks, PCs have remained generally slow from June to August, according to Inform, with no major upsets in the ranks despite the exit of Gateway and the merger between HP and Compaq.

June saw sales rise 32 per cent as corporates burnt the remains of their yearly budgets and remained in good health through August.

The merger of Compaq and HP had surprisingly little impact on channel sales, in the short term at least. Compaq is still the undisputed leader, servicing 23 per cent of the market, followed by HP (17 per cent) and IBM (14 per cent). Toshiba has maintained its stunning performance, ranking fourth in market share (10 per cent) despite selling notebooks only.

The disappearance of Gateway had little effect on the top rankings, due to its minimal market share (7 per cent), most of which went to Dell, according to Inform analyst Hakan Alac.

On the reseller front, Alac said online sales and direct catalogues, which account for 12 per cent of PC sales, are sectors to watch out for in the future. He said consumers are getting more experienced ordering off spec and are gaining confidence purchasing online, which will see more vendors selling direct.

Mass merchants and corporate dealers accounted for the bulk of sales, with 24 per cent and 36 per cent respectively.

In terms of margins, notebooks reaped the best returns for resellers, accounting for 32 per cent of total profits. PCs generated 56 per cent of profits while servers accounted for 11 per cent of total profits.

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