Gulf hardcopy peripheral market rebounding says IDC
Gulf printer market shows growth in shipment value in first quarter
The Gulf region's hardcopy peripherals market is showing signs of recovery, according to IDC, after suffering badly in 2009.
The latest report from the analyst's Gulf Quarterly Hardcopy Peripherals Tracker showed 31.8% growth in shipment value from Q1 2009 compared to Q1 2010, although volume of shipments was down 4.4%. IDC forecasts that the market will grow 5.3% year on year for 2010 as a whole, with the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Kuwait, Bahrain, and Qatar all recording growth in terms of overall shipment growth.
"The market's volume remained relatively unchanged year on year, but the high growth in value was due to a strong surge in shipments of laser devices," said Siamak Rahnama, a research analyst with IDC Middle East, Africa, and Turkey. "In 2009, end users adopted an extremely price-sensitive approach and became very wary of suffering dips in their cash flow, which resulted in a drastic reduction in their expenditure levels on laser devices. As the region stabilizes, a sense of normality has returned to the market, reinvigorating HCP sales, especially in the laser segment."
Rahnama warned that while growth would return, it would not be to the rates as previously, and vendors would have to develop more services and a broader focus on vertical sectors.
"The UAE has set off on its path to recovery, and we expect the market to perform much better than in 2009. That said, a return to the phenomenal growth rates experienced before the economic crisis hit is not expected," Rahnama said.
"Vendors must diversify their vertical focus during 2010 and beyond, especially as the previously big-spending real estate and construction sectors were heavily impacted by the crisis," he added. "They also need to develop their printing services strategies, placing a special focus on the provision of managed print services. Such a move will enable vendors to reduce their dependence on the sale of hardware devices and capitalize on the cost-cutting measures that many end users have implemented in the wake of the crisis."