Middle East and Africa server market continues to grow

Revenue in EMEA region grows to $4.4 billion

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By  Sean Robson Published  August 31, 2008

Sales of servers in the Middle East and Africa grew by 16% in the second quarter of this year, in comparison to the same period in 2007. This placed the region just behind Central and Eastern Europe in terms of growth.

Industry analysts IDC reported that overall server market results in EMEA presented the highest growth since the first quarter of 2007 in factory revenue terms and since the third quarter of 2005 when looking at unit volumes, despite the overall slowing economy. The market grew by 9% year over year with shipments of servers reaching nearly 700,000. 95.5% of these shipments comprised x86 boxes.

Beatriz Valle, research analyst at IDC said: “Companies still see scalable servers with high availability and RAS features as a future-proof investment, while they wait for virtualization on x86 to mature further. These are uncertain times and IT managers are expecting their budgets to be squeezed even more in the coming quarters. But emerging models such as cloud computing, and growth in Web 2.0, are presenting exciting opportunities for vendors.”

Blades continued to far outstrip the overall market, with revenue up 42% annually to over $400 million. Pedestals, still at nearly 50% of total revenue, increased by a healthy 9% over the year-ago period for the first time since IDC records began, displaying the focus on entry level pedestal promotions, mainly targeted at the SMB sector.

Windows led the operating system market results, with annual growth of 10.3% and a revenue market share more than three percentage points ahead of Unix, which also displayed strong growth of 8% in revenue. Linux decreased by 1.8% over the year ago period; the first time this operating system has suffered a dip in revenue since the first quarter of 2002.

Sitting atop the vendor rankings is HP and IBM; IBM recorded the largest growth over the past year at 18.2%. Behind these two come Sun Microsystems, Dell and Fujitsu Siemens respectively. Dell, sandwiched between Sun and Fujitsu Siemens is, together with IBM, the only vendor to record double digit growth over the last year.

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