Refresh cycles, the expiration of Windows XP support and an improving economic landscape have helped drive the corporate PC market across Western Europe with commercial desktop sales ending the year strongly.
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Anecdotal reports from vendors and analysts of a return to spending in the business market have been backed up by the latest numbers from Context, which gets its figures directly from European distributors, which showed a 10.7% increase in desktop sales in the fourth quarter, compared to the same period last year.
The increase followed on from a modest 1.5% growth in the third quarter and has reversed several quarters of back-to-back declines, which has helped some of the leading vendors in the market.
Hewlett-Packard saw sales increase by 7.9% in Q4 year-on-year, Lenovo by 11.5%, Fujitsu by 21.1% and Acer by 14.9% as a degree of stability returned to the commercial desktop arena.
"We have seen an increasing stability as there is a need for refreshes amongst the large Desktop installed bases across many of the countries, and this is also partly driven by the end of XP support," said Marie-Christine Pygott, senior analyst at Context.
“The improvement in the business desktop performance throughout 2013 and the return of the category to an actual growth path in the second half of the year were partly driven by a lengthy period of softer sales and weak IT investment across the region last year," she added.
The UK market grew by 8% but by far the strongest was Spain, with 35.7% year on year growth indicating it might be recovering from recent troubled times, and Germany also posted decent growth with 24.1%.