Samsung cuts target for computer sales
By Kim Yoo-chul
Samsung Electronics, the world’s biggest technology firm by revenue, has lowered its computer sales target by 10 percent to 17.1 million desktops and laptops this year, company officials said.
Citing data from market research firm Gartner, Samsung said Thursday it sold a record 3.97 million computers during the first quarter of the year.
``We are positive about the further expansion of our computer business, but it’s unlikely we will achieve our earlier sales target of 19 million,’’ said a company official. Last year, Samsung sold 14.23 million laptop and desktop computers, it said.
The official added the firm isn’t overly worried about the reduced target because it is focusing on ``quality growth,’’ not just ``quantity growth.’’
Its sales grew by 7 percent in the first quarter from a year ago, better than the industry’s average growth of 1.9 percent, which was led by handsome sales of its Series 5 Ultra, Series 7 and premium Series 9 models, according to the company.
But this is the first time in more than a year that Samsung saw a decline of its quarterly growth rate to a ``single-digit’’ from previous ``double-digits,’’ raising worries that its business was entering a ``declining phase.’’
During the same period, its rivals Apple, AsusTek and Lenovo saw double-digit growth in their businesses. Officials and analysts say the computer market will see slower growth in the upcoming year.
``Yes, sales will continue to grow but the growth will slow to a moderate pace,’’ said another company official who is familiar with the matter.
Samsung is aiming to sell more than 35 million computers by the end of 2015 to join the top three in the global computer industry. It has expanded this area along with its camera business, as a segment that’s been receiving more investment as the firm is currently a second-tier computer manufacturer unlike in chips, LCDs, smartphones and televisions where it is a global leader.
The company is releasing high-end models for developed markets, the head of the company’s computer business Nam Seong-woo said. Samsung released an upgraded Chromebook using Chrome software, as part of efforts to bolster its presence.