EXCLUSIVE: Acer Australia, who is struggling to hold onto market share in the notebook and tablet markets, has seen another senior executive quit.According to sources Acer Australia is unprofitable with sales slipping “significantly” during the past 12 months, also contributing to their problems is a lack of demand for Windows 8 tablets.
In December 2011 Acer Australia reported a profit of only $965,000 on revenues of $483M this was down $28M on the prior year.
In the prior year the Company made a loss.
Late last week Nigel Gore, the Director of Product Management at Acer Australia, quit the Taiwanese Company for the second time. He joins a long list of senior executives who have quit the Company after being persuaded to come back to the Company by Charles Chung, the CEO of Acer Australia.
Other executives who have quit Acer claiming that they could not work with senior management include the former Marketing Director Raymond Vardanega, who after quitting the Company the first time was asked to come back and head up marketing.
Vardanega, who on his return worked with Gore, is credited with helping establish the Acer brand in Australia.
Using innovative direct response programs developed with advertising agency George Patterson, Vardanega grew Acer’s market share by taking on the likes of Dell and HP; however, this was all dumped by senior Taiwanese management who claimed they wanted to go back to “retailer incentive marketing”.
Citing conflicts with senior management Vardanega quit the PC maker, who after “killing off” the programs developed by him and George Patterson, saw market share slip.
An insider who quit the Company earlier this year said “Taiwanese management at Acer do not understand that they have to spend on brand marketing. If Intel is handing out the money they will spend it but if it means investing in the brand themselves they loath to do it. This has resulted in several senior staff walking out on the Company “.
Gore is not saying why he suddenly quit Acer, however insiders have told ChannelNews that like Vardanega, he was having difficulty with senior management who have been accused of hiring experienced senior management and then “telling them how to do their job”.
Charles Chung the CEO of Acer Australia has not returned our calls.
Earlier this year Robin Tang, the business development manager quit Acer. He is now Marketing Director at Fujitsu.
Also returning to the Company for a second stint after earlier quitting is David Sunton, the current Advertising and Marketing manager.
A former senior executive at Acer said “Working at Acer is a nightmare. They hire experienced local management then when they are onboard the Taiwanese management who report direct to Taiwan dictate what they have to do as opposed to letting them get on with the job of growing market share.”
“They are given limited budgets and told to get market share at any cost which often means discounting products to grow market share They take the praise for market share rises but when sales slow it is always the fault of the local manager”.
You only have to look at the mess that Acer is in globally. They hired Gianfranco Lanci as their CEO. He was starting to make inroads, then he was dumped with local Taiwanese management taking on the global CEO role. Since then, Acer sales have gone downhill.
During the third quarter Acer only managed a net profit of $2.32 million; analysts were tipping a $25 million net profit. Sales fell 11.6%.
Shortly after quitting Acer Gianfranco Lanc was hired by Lenovo who is now the #1 PC Company in the world.
Now Acer is suing Lanc over non-compete violations, after he jumped ship to go to Lenovo where he is head of its Europe, Middle East and Africa division, after doing some time as a consultant for the company.
Acer claims he has breached the terms of a 12-month non-compete contract.