Acer spies major Saudi contracts with PC plant

Acer’s recently announced PC manufacturing plant in Saudi Arabia will help the vendor secure major government contracts in the Kingdom, executives said last week.

  • E-Mail
By  Chris Whyatt Published  February 12, 2006

Acer’s recently announced PC manufacturing plant in Saudi Arabia will help the vendor secure major government contracts in the Kingdom, executives said last week. The Taiwan PC giant announced at the end of last month that it has inked an agreement with a Saudi firm, Advanced Electronics Company (AEC), to produce PCs in the Kingdom and pilot production of Acer PCs is already underway at the Saudi Arabian company’s Riyadh plant. With Acer’s assembly plant in Dubai almost at saturation point, demand is expected to exceed 60,000 units per year within the first two years out of the joint Saudi operation, and 60 job opportunities are expected to be created at AEC. A Saudi Economic Offset Program Company, AEC is run under directives from the Saudi government, which launched its “PCs for homes” initiative, designed to make PCs more affordable for the general populace last year. Sunil Nair, business and sales manager for KSA and Iraq, told IT Weekly that being part of that home computing initiative, which is facilitated by the Communication and Information Commision (CITC), was one of the motives behind the move. Last year, Mohammad Ebrahim Al Swaiyel, governor of the CITC, said that PC makers who had set up operations in the Kingdom would be favoured over other suppliers (see IT Weekly 2- 8 April 2005). Nair added that, given the huge nature of the small and medium-sized business (SMB) market in Saudi Arabia, a local production site would give Acer better delivery time to its channels and end-user customers. “That will improve our market standing in the desktop arena,” he said, adding that Acer chose AEC because of its industrial experience, advanced infrastructure, and minute component production for sophisticated defence requirements. “The announcement can be viewed as a major expansion of Acer’s Saudi activity,” said Philip Ashkar, sales and marketing director of Acer Middle East. “The Riyadh plant will open up massive inroads into the corporate segment, add a timely boost to efforts in the lucrative SMB space, as well as allowing Acer to further consolidate its position in the retail sector,” he went on to add. Hardware rivals HP established an assembly plant in Saudi Arabia last year and Fujitsu Siemens Computers (FSC) recently revealed its intention to set up a PC assembly or final configuration facility in the Middle East (see IT Weekly 3-9 December 2005). By becoming one of the first international PC manufacturers to produce in the Kingdom, Acer said it expected to receive a massive boost to its profile as it continued to target key strategic customers and government organisations.

Add a Comment

Your display name This field is mandatory

Your e-mail address This field is mandatory (Your e-mail address won't be published)

Security code