Acer's Q3 Profit Falls Way Short of Analyst Expectations

It's not unusual for a company's profits to come up short of analyst expectations, but what's interesting in Acer's case is fact that its performance in the third quarter of 2012 versus what the market experts were anticipating ended up being miles apart.

Acer's net income in Q3 reached NT$68 million (about US$2.3 million), the second largest computer maker in Asia announced today. That's well short of the NT$503 million (US$17.2 million) average Bloomberg compiled based on 18 analyst estimates, and Acer doesn't appear willing to talk about the disparity, at least not yet. The company plans to hold a briefing on Thursday, at which time it will hopefully shed some light on its low figures.

Acer Ultrabooks

In the meantime, we can only speculate that Acer is yet another victim of a sagging PC market. The company's not alone. Microsoft (net income down 22 percent), Intel (revenue down 5 percent compared to last year), and AMD (revenue down 25 percent annually) have all been hit hard by weak PC sales, and it appears the same is true of Acer. Adding further to Acer's woes is the slow growing Ultrabook market.

Keep in mind that Acer played a pivotal role in growing netbooks during the platform's heyday (as did Asus and MSI), and it may have been expecting the same kind of market response for Ultrabooks. However, Ultrabooks aren't flying off of store shelves the way some envisioned. In fact, IHS iSuppli recently slashed Ultrabook sales expectations by more than half, estimating 10.3 million shipments by the end of 2012, down from an initial forecast of 22 million.