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Thursday, January 18, 2007

Breathing down their necks...

Well it looks like I got my answer.

According to IDC, the top five PC vendors by worldwide market share in the fourth quarter 2006 were HP (18.1 percent), Dell (14.7 percent), Lenovo Group (7.3 percent), Acer (7.1 percent), and Toshiba (3.7 percent).

Individually, again according to IDC:

HP built on its third quarter momentum, boosting year-on-year growth to nearly 24% (the fastest for HP since 2000) and taking a clear lead in worldwide shipment volume for the quarter. Growth in the United States rebounded to near 16% from a dip to single digits in the third quarter, while international growth surged above 28% with a strong showing in EMEA.

Dell was unable to recover from a slow third quarter and stumbled through the end of the year. Shipments to the U.S. market, which continue to represent over 50% of Dell volume, were down nearly 17% year on year following a single-digit decline in Q3. In addition, international growth, which was reasonably stable in the third quarter, fell to just 1.5% in 4Q06 with notably slower growth in all regions. Dell's focus on profitability over share is coming right at a time of aggressive competition from companies such as HP, Acer, and Apple, and is compounded by a slow commercial market. As a result, Dell is in the unusual circumstance of seeing volume decline sequentially from the third quarter in both the United States and worldwide.

Lenovo continues to benefit from its leadership position in Asia/Pacific, while struggling for traction in other regions. The company continues to gain share in APeJ, which accounts for nearly 60% of volume, while shipments declined in the United States and Japan, and modest volume gains in other regions were not enough to preserve share.

Acer had another solid quarter with strong gains in all regions. EMEA represents roughly 70% of Acer's worldwide shipments, and grew by nearly 37% in the fourth quarter, but expansion in the United States and Asia/Pacific (excluding Japan) also contributed to the company's gains.

Toshiba's focus on portable PCs continues to give the company an edge in overall growth. Worldwide shipments were up more than 17% in the fourth quarter, with an increase of more than 14% in the United States. Although growth was slower than last quarter, and closer to market rates for portable PC shipments, Toshiba continues to gain share in total shipments and benefits from the higher margins for portable PCs.

Overall, we're going to have to concede defeat to Lenovo, but if you look closely, we're catching up. Fast.

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