External storage market slumps
Sector suffered year-on-year decline in 2012, according to IDC
The external storage market in the Middle East and Africa market has suffered year-on-year decline, plunging in Q4 2012 to total $272 million, with terabyte capacity rising slightly by a modest 8% over the same period, according to IDC.
The UAE external storage market experienced a 3% year-on-year decline in revenue during Q4 2012, while in contrast Qatar posted modest growth of 9%, fueled by demand from the government and education sectors.
''The decline can be attributed to a considerable reduction in the number of projects in the MEA region involving large-scale deployments when compared to previous years," says Swapna Subramani, senior research analyst at IDC Middle East, Africa, and Turkey. "However, we remain bullish on the external storage trend moving forward owing to the overall resilience of the market, which will be bolstered by new projects and government initiatives in the health and education sectors."
In the Middle East, Saudi Arabia was the only country to register strong year-on-year growth, expanding 60% in Q4 2012.
"This growth was driven by several projects in the Kingdom's telecommunications and education sectors," says Subramani.
"IDC expects to see further growth within the government, automotive, financial services, and petrochemicals sectors, among others in the region."
The North Africa region (including Morocco, Algeria, and Tunisia) experienced a continued slump in Q4 2012 as a result of political unrest and spiralling inflation. South Africa also faced a decline in Q4 2012 owing to the seasonal/cyclical trend of infrastructure uptake in the country. Nigeria was the bright spot within the African market, posting healthy double-digit growth that can be attributed to deals in the financial and telecommunications sectors. ''Enterprise deals in key verticals will continue to play a pivotal role in shaping trends in the African storage market,'' says Subramani.
From a vendor perspective, EMC retained its top spot in the market with over 48% share on the back of sizeable projects in Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Qatar, and Nigeria. IBM secured second place with just over 14% share, although the vendor suffered a decline in revenue year on year. Netapp placed third with just over 10% share, while HP followed closely behind with just under 10% share of the MEA market. Dell witnessed a stark decline in revenue with 4% share in the last quarter of 2012.