Price erosion boosts further notebook penetration in the Dutch PC market, says IDC

LONDON – NOVEMBER 15, 2005 – The Dutch PC market recorded yet another solid quarter with shipments growing by 23.3% year on year, reaching 580,000 units and maintaining position as the sixth largest PC market in Western Europe. Although both desktop and notebook form factors enjoyed a healthy double-digit growth, demand was clearly driven by sustained momentum in the mobile space where ASPs continued to decline by 17% compared to the same quarter of last year. "Aggressive marketing strategies of Asian vendors, such as Acer and Asus, have put increasing pressure on top-tier vendors to match prices," said Eszter Morvay, research analyst for IDC's EMEA Quarterly PC Research group.

In line with expectations, notebook demand continued to drive overall growth in the Netherlands, with mobile shipments boosted by 37.2% year on year, resulting in increased penetration of mobile platforms in both consumer and commercial segments and thus further narrowing the gap with deskbound systems. "This trend is expected to continue, as many vendors are shifting towards a more concentrated marketing and sales activity to address notebook demand," added Morvay. Emphasis is being placed on the benefits of enhanced mobility through a more compact design, bigger displays offering wider viewing angles and increased data space, state-of-the-art technology to provide ease of use and superior security, improved communication and connectivity through the wireless technology to appeal to SMB and corporate customers, and enhanced multimedia features coupled with aggressive price points to appeal to end users and students in the back-to-school market.

After a slow start in the beginning of the year, the desktop market picked up in 2Q and maintained momentum throughout 3Q, growing by 15.5% year on year, almost twice as fast as the Western European average. Sales were primarily driven by attractive price points and back-to-school promotions in the retails channels, with offerings starting from *599, further penetrating the more price-sensitive segments during the buoyant back-to-school period, while high-end users were offered appealing product bundles with increased multimedia features. "The more sophisticated multimedia PCs are prompting many users to replace their home systems in order to access new digital home entertainment applications. Every major vendor has introduced Media Centre-type PCs to its product portfolio to capitalize on the buoyant consumer demand during the Christmas season," said Morvay.

Vendor Highlights

Hewlett Packard continued to dominate the Dutch PC market, although shipments only increased by a moderate 6.5% year on year, maintaining clear leadership in the desktop space for both consumer and commercial segments and a solid second position behind Acer in the notebook space. Growth was fuelled by consumer demand as a result of which both desktop and notebook sales recorded double-digit growth. However, commercial sales displayed softer trends in comparison with the robust 3Q04.

Dell displayed a healthy performance and kept its second position in the overall ranking, as shipments grew by 14.2% year on year, stimulated by the sustained momentum in the mobile space. While demand remained buoyant in the commercial segment, the vendor suffered from fierce competition in the consumer market, particularly from Acer, Fujitsu Siemens, and NEC CI/Packard Bell.

Acer enjoyed a solid growth at 43.4% year on year, maintaining third position in the Dutch PC market with sustained dominance of the mobile segment. Although volumes are still driven by robust notebook demand, the vendor continued to capitalize on its presence in the channel in order to stimulate desktop sales, particularly in the consumer segment.

Fujitsu Siemens recorded the most outstanding performance among the top-tier vendors, clearly outperforming the market with growth of 112.3% year on year, managing to strengthen its fourth position in the overall market. The consumer space was driven by the buoyant mobile demand, while the commercial segment recorded triple-digit growth across both desktop and notebook form factors.

NEC CI/Packard Bell also achieved a robust growth of 59.6%, maintaining a solid fifth position in the overall ranking. Although sales were driven by the uplift in the desktop market, notebook demand also remained strong, particularly in the commercial space.

Top 5 Vendors: Dutch PC Shipments (Units 000)

Vendor 3Q04 % Share

3Q05 % Share Growth

Hewlett Packard 146,324 31.1%

155,907 26.9% 6.5%

Dell 98,559 21.0%

112,540 19.4% 14.2%

Acer 47,443 10.1%

68,013 11.7% 43.4%

Fujitsu Siemens 20,396 4.3%

43,301 7.5% 112.3%

NEC/Packard Bell 20,943 4.5%

33,415 5.8% 59.6%

Others 136,782 29%

166,747 28.7% 21.9%

Total 470,447 100%

579,923 100% 23.3%

The data in this press release comes from the Europe, Middle East, and Africa Quarterly PC Tracker, a comprehensive database detailing changes and trends in the PC market, covering vendors, brands, customer segments, distribution channels, processors, and PC product categories. Quarterly updates provide the latest information on the rapidly changing market for time-critical decision making. Built on the foundation of IDC's network of country-level quarterly PC tracking services, IDC's Europe, Middle East, and Africa Quarterly PC Tracker's bottom-up methodology delivers an accurate view of the PC market from those closest to it.

For information on how to become a client of IDC's EMEA PC Tracker, contact Program Director Karine Paoli on +44 (0) 20 8987 7218, email kpaoli@idc.com. Alternatively, contact your local IDC office.

About IDC

IDC is the premier global market intelligence and advisory firm in the information technology and telecommunications industries. We analyze and predict technology trends so that our clients can make strategic, fact-based decisions on IT purchases and business strategy. Over 700 IDC analysts in 50 countries provide local expertise and insights on technology markets. Business executives and IT managers have relied for 40 years on our advice to make decisions that contribute to the success of their organizations.

IDC is a subsidiary of IDG, the world's leading technology media, research, and events company. Additional information can be found at www.idc.com

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