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EXCLUSIVE: Acer Wallow After 38% Sales Slump & Millions In Losses

By David Richards | Wednesday | 05/06/2013

Acer Australia has reported a massive $5.8M loss and a 38% slump in sales for the period ending December 2012. Revenues have fallen $187M from $483M in 2011 to just $296M, with the company struggling to grow market share after being dumped by mass retailers.

At December 2011 the Taiwanese Company, which has moved to direct selling from kiosks in shopping centres in an effort to hold onto market share in the declining PC market, reported a profit of $965,000. Sales in 2011 were down by $28M.

Serious questions are now being asked about the management of the Australian operation after several key executives left the company last year claiming that they "struggled" to work with CEO Charles Chung.

Acer Australia marketing director David Sunton has not returned our calls. SmartHouse and ChannelNews tipped these losses earlier this year after we received a series of emails from disgruntled staff.

In 2012 Acer Australia struggled to grow their mass retailer share after several retailers stopped selling the company's products.

The big beneficiary has been Samsung Australia, with their PC range replacing Acer at several mass retailers. 

In the SMB and corporate markets organisations have purchased Samsung, Toshiba and HP products over Acer. Several education departments that placed Acer on their preferred list have reported high failure rates for Acer products.
Recently the Queensland Education department placed an order for 14,000 Acer Windows 8 tablets. The deal, valued at about $13 million, was a rare win for the Australian subsidiary. 

Research Company Gartner recently reported that PC sales in Australia plunged 20.2 per cent during the past 12 months. 

Nigel Gore, the Director of Product Management at Acer Australia, recently left the company for the second time. He joins a long list of senior executives who have quit after being persuaded to return by Chung.

Other executives who have quit Acer claiming that they could not work with senior management include former Marketing Director Raymond Vardanega, who after resigning the first time was asked to come back and head up marketing.
Former Marketing and Business Development Manager Robin Tan also resigned in 2012.

Recently Acer was forced to write down the value of their Gateway, eMachines and Packard Bell brands, which have all failed in Australia.

Acer Corporate said recently its fourth quarter loss reached $116 million, down from a net profit of NT$94 million in the same period a year earlier. Revenue reached NT$101.5 billion, a dip from NT$127.5 billion in the previous year.

Earlier this week LG re-entered the Australian PC market with new range of PCs that include tablets and an Ultrabook. The company is tipped to strip market share away from Acer.

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