DUBAI: The Middle East and Africa, MEA, PC market posted year-on-year growth in Q3 2014, spurred in a large part by two significant education deals in Pakistan and the revival of the Egyptian market.
The latest figures announced today by International Data Corporation, IDC, show that the market expanded 2.1% in volume terms during the quarter to reach a total of 4.26 million units. As in the previous quarter, growth was seen across both the desktop and portable PC segments.
IDC data shows that desktop shipments to MEA increased 3.6% year on year in Q3 2014 to total 1.73 million units, while shipments of portable PCs were up 1.1% over the same period to total 2.53 million units. Vendors were seen shipping a growing volume of notebooks carrying Microsoft’s Bing internet search solution to the region, but despite being aggressively priced at around $300, there wasn’t much demand for these devices during the quarter.
“The market overcame ongoing instability in certain parts of the region to maintain its state of growth in Q3 2014,” says Fouad Rafiq Charakla, Research Manager for Personal Computing, Systems, and Infrastructure Solutions at IDC Middle East, Turkey, and Africa. “For example, the Nigerian market was hit hard by the outbreak of Ebola, while the war-like situation in Iraq greatly inhibited shipments to the Rest of the Middle East sub-region comprising Iran, Iraq, Syria, Yemen, Palestine, and Afghanistan.” “Vendors also had to contend with a general slowdown in PC demand across the region due to the growing popularity of tablets and smartphones,” continues Charakla. “Indeed, an overall regional decline was only averted by the delivery of 150,000 notebooks into Pakistan’s education sector and the return of relative calm to Egypt, which saw these two countries become by far the fastest growing markets during the quarter.” The three leading PC vendors in MEA remained unchanged from the previous quarter, and these three vendors are the only multinational players to have maintained a stronghold in the region’s commercial segment. HP continued to lead in terms of market share, posting year-on-year unit growth of 14.4% for the quarter.
Second-placed Lenovo continued to benefit from strong consumer demand and was again the fastest growing major PC vendor in the region, increasing its shipments 58.2% year on year. Third-ranked Dell recorded 23.0% year-on-year growth, with one of the previously mentioned education deals in Pakistan serving as a major driver for the vendor.
“Looking to the future, IDC expects the MEA PC market to shrink 2.0% overall in 2014,” says Charakla. “The market will remain close to flat over the coming five years, and may even experience some minor declines, with demand for both desktops and portable PCs continuing to slow in many parts of the region. However, a number of underpenetrated MEA markets – including Egypt, Pakistan, Nigeria, and some smaller African countries – will continue to experience growth, preventing the overall region from experiencing any significant declines.”