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French Version

Toshiba notebook sales soar by 40% in second quarter

DUBAI, 3 September 2003 : BOOMING sales in the UAE have continued to boost Toshiba’s share of the market for mobile computers, outstripping market growth and further closing the gap on the regional market leader.

Unveiled at a press conference today (Wednesday), the latest official figures from IDC – the independent market research specialist – show that Toshiba recorded massive sales increases in the UAE during the second quarter of this year, while its main competitor’s growth was marginal or negative.

Toshiba’s sales in the UAE grew by 40.3 per cent over the same period last year, boosting market share from 22.4 to 24.2 percent and reducing the gap on the market leader by 16 percentage points while maintaining a 13 point lead on its nearest rival.

The leading Japanese manufacturer also announced a strong participation in GITEX 2003, the IT show to be held in Dubai next month. On display at the Toshiba stand, number H3-1, will be a whole new range of mobile computers, including the first Intel Centrino-based notebook range for consumers and the first 15.4” wide-screen notebook to be launched in the Middle East.

"Our customers continue to use their mobile PCs for entertainment functionality and it is our goal to meet that demand by delivering new technology – from desktop quality graphics to integrated wireless connectivity and now the ability to bring home entertainment to the mobile PC," said Oscar Koenders, Toshiba’s vice president Worldwide Product Planning who has recently resumed the responsibility for Computer Systems Marketing in Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA).

"Since my appointment in June 2003, I have charged the team with one overriding goal – reclaim Toshiba’s legacy position as a mobile computing and communications leader," Koenders explained. "We’ve begun executing on this mission and have already made great strides in refining our business model, matching our strategies with our core strengths and customers’ needs and turning our focus back solely to mobility."

Toshiba has also broken ranks with the rest of the computer industry by becoming the first to disclose actual unit sales for the second quarter of 2003 – 4,259 in the UAE compared to 3,036 in the second quarter of last year.

The upward sales trend was confirmed by results from Kuwait and Qatar, where Toshiba has taken over as market leader, and in Saudi Arabia where sales grew by a staggering 543.5 per cent.

Saudi market share leapt from 6.6 per cent to 21.9 per cent, with sales outstripping total market growth by almost 7-1.

Toshiba is now firmly established as number two in the Saudi market, closing the gap behind the leader from 62 to 15 percentage points. Unit sales in the Kingdom totaled 4,533 for the period compared to 720 in the first half of last year.

Market share in Kuwait and Qatar hit of 33.9 and 20.9 per cent respectively for the period. Kuwait sales outstripped the nearest rival by more than 2-1 although competition in Qatar is more intense, with three manufacturers each claiming about 20 per cent of the market.

Toshiba’s total Middle East market share has soared from barely double figures since control of the region was shifted in April 2000 from Singapore to the company’s European headquarters in Germany, thus shortening the supply chain and moving closer to customers.

"Our aim is to be number one across the entire region and we’re all on the way to achieving that," said Ahmed Khalil, regional manager of the company’s Middle East computer systems division.

"Our product range is at the leading edge of mobile computing technology and because new models are now released in the Middle East at the same time as they first reach European markets, customers here have instant access to the latest systems."

"Toshiba has successfully focused on servicing key market segments such as small home and office users, small and medium business, and the fast-growing education sector," he explained. "Add our dedicated network of financially sound and market-reputable distribution partners and Toshiba’s unique three-year international warranty across the entire product range – something that no other competitor can offer – and you have the main ingredients for our success."

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