Acer cuts 2011 tablet shipment target by nearly 60 percent

TAIPEI Wed Jun 15, 2011 1:02am EDT

Acer's Chairman J.T. Wang poses with the new 10-inch Acer tablet PC after an interview with Reuters in Taipei December 14, 2010. REUTERS/Pichi Chuang

Acer's Chairman J.T. Wang poses with the new 10-inch Acer tablet PC after an interview with Reuters in Taipei December 14, 2010.

Credit: Reuters/Pichi Chuang

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TAIPEI (Reuters) - Acer Inc slashed its full-year shipment target for tablets by almost 60 percent and expects lower notebook shipments as the world No.2 PC maker works to clear accumulated inventory.

However, Acer, which has missed its last three quarterly forecasts and saw the departure of former chief executive Gianfranco Lanci in March following a clash over how to deal with the tablet challenge, said it expected overall shipments to improve from the third quarter.

"The third quarter will be considerably more stable. It will be similar to the second quarter or better," Chairman J.T. Wang told a shareholder meeting on Wednesday. "The fourth quarter will be even better."

Wang told reporters after the meeting that the new target for tablet shipments this year was 2.5-3 million units, much lower than the 5-7 million units target set at the beginning of the year.

Acer said it expected to sell 800,000 tablets in each of the second and third quarters.

In terms of total shipments, Wang said he expected second-quarter to fall less than 10 percent from the previous quarter, exceeding forecasts.

In April, the PC maker cut its forecast for shipments in the second quarter to a 10 percent decline from January-March, citing its recent reorganization, inventory adjustment and a seasonal slowdown in the PC industry.

Last month, the company posted a 29.2 percent drop in total sales.

Shares of Acer has plunged 30 percent since March 25, when the company first cut its first-quarter PC revenue outlook and followed by the sudden management changes.

Acer shares had slipped 0.4 percent by 12 a.m. on Wednesday, outperforming a 0.95 percent decline by the broader market.

Acer said early this month that it would take a $150 million charge to write off inventory and doubtful payments in Europe and would cut 300 jobs there.

(Editing by Chris Lewis)

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