x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 26 July 2017

Lenovo defies desktop decline with 24 per cent Mena growth

The Chinese PC manufacturer Lenovo has managed to grow 24 per cent in the Middle East and North Africa despite an 18.5 per cent decline in the desktop market.

Oliver Ebel, Lenovo's vice president and general manager for the region, says his company will remain focused on PCs. Antonie Robertson / The National
Oliver Ebel, Lenovo's vice president and general manager for the region, says his company will remain focused on PCs. Antonie Robertson / The National

The Chinese personal computer manufacturer Lenovo has managed to grow its sales 24 per cent in the Middle East and North Africa (Mena) despite an 18.5 per cent decline in the desktop market.

Lenovo recently replaced America's Hewlett-Packard as the world's biggest PC manufacturer, shipping 12.6 million units in the second quarter of this year. The global PC market declined 11 per cent in the second quarter according to IDC.

Since its foray into Mena, Lenovo has managed to rapidly acquire market share, ranking top in Qatar, UAE and Egypt. Lenovo's PC sales in the Emirates increased 15.1 per cent in the second quarter, and by 9.3 per cent in Saudi Arabia.

"We are very well-positioned to grow," said Oliver Ebel, the vice-president and general manger at Lenovo Middle East and Africa.

"The market is shifting to smartphone and tablet, but we will not forget about the PC market which is still a US$2 billion opportunity worldwide.

"The region is very significant for us, we haven't slept in the past year with new devices and tablets and smartphones. The markets are growing very fast."

The global shift away from traditional desktop PCs to tablets, smartphones and convertible laptops is also reflected across the Middle East and North Africa.

"The industry is changing to tablet and touch devices. Globally we are number three in smart connected device shipments. People want new solutions and experiences," said Mr Ebel.

The overall tablet market in the UAE grew 180 per cent last year and 146 per cent in Saudi Arabia, driven by entry level devices running on Google's Android operating system. Lenovo's tablet sales in the Middle East grew 7.1 per cent.

Lenovo launched its upmarket smartphone, the K900, at the end of June in the UAE and Saudi Arabia. Feedback has been positive according to Mr Ebel and the company is currently assessing which markets to launch in next.

Revenues from Europe, the Middle East and Africa account for 21 per cent of total sales. The company recorded global revenues of $8.8bn for the second quarter of this year, a 10 per cent increase year on year, while profits grew 23 per cent to $174 million.

Lenovo's global market share is now 16.7 per cent, making it the market leader.

 

thamid@thenational.ae