Dell posts phenomenal Q1 PC growth in Latin America

Dell Computer continued tearing through Latin America's PC market during the first quarter, posting outstanding growth in a market that shrunk, according to Gartner's Dataquest unit.

Dell, virtually a non-entity in Latin America's PC market five years ago, has targeted the region aggressively in recent years and has clearly gotten the attention of consumers and corporate buyers. It has managed to consistently post phenomenal shipment growth rates that often defy the overall trend of the market.

This year's first quarter is a good example. While the region's shipments fell 2.7 percent compared with last year's first quarter, Dell's shipments grew 62.7 percent, according to Dataquest. That put it in second place for shipments.

By comparison, the shipments of market leader Compaq Computer Corp. dropped a staggering 27.7 percent. Also posting a drop was IBM Corp., which came in fourth in shipments.

Hewlett-Packard Co., which came in third, posted a 10.8 percent growth in shipments, while Mexican vendor Alaska also fared well with a 15.3 increase in shipments.

Dell's success during the quarter is attributable to its winning of key corporate accounts and to its good showing in the notebook segment of the market, Dataquest said in a statement Friday.

However, now that HP has completed its acquisition of Compaq, Dell and the other vendors will face a greater challenge, Dataquest said.

Viewing the data from the country perspective, Brazil had the most shipments, with 44 percent of the quarter's 1.72 million PCs. Brazil's shipments dropped slightly from last year's first quarter: 0.7 percent.

Unsurprisingly, Argentina's PC market took a beating. Shipments fell 83.8 percent in this country, which is going through a devastating economic crisis. México fared better with an 8.6 percent growth in shipments, according to the San Jose, California-based Dataquest.

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