NZ network market defies Asia flu: IDC

New Zealand's networking market appears to have escaped the rigours of the Asian financial crisis which has dealt blows to LAN markets throughout the rest of the Asia-Pacific region. According to IDC's Asia-Pacific unit, Asia's LAN markets had been largely unaffected by the region's currency crisis, which started with the sharp devaluation of the Thai baht in July last year.

New Zealand's networking market appears to have escaped the rigours of the Asian financial crisis which has dealt blows to LAN markets throughout the rest of the Asia-Pacific region.

According to IDC's Asia-Pacific unit, Asia's LAN markets had been largely unaffected by the region's currency crisis, which started with the sharp devaluation of the Thai baht in July last year.

However, second-quarter LAN market revenue for the region, excluding Japan, declined 12% year on year, and 10% from the first-quarter figure of $US561.6 million.

The negative market trend continued from the first quarter of this year, when steep first-quarter revenue drops occurred in South-East Asia and South Korea.

New Zealand's year-on-year second-quarter figures showed a slight decrease of 3.1%, from $22.3 million in the second quarter of 1997 to $21.6 million in the second quarter of 1998. However, the local market showed sequential growth of 8.5% between quarters this year, from $19.9 million in Q1 to $ 21.6 million in Q2.

IDC New Zealand manager Dinesh Kumar says an uptake in the switching segment has generally carried the local market, whereas sales of network adapter cards, hubs and routers have generally registered slight declines.

Australia, China and India were other markets in the region to post positive growth from the first quarter to the second, IDC says.

China's LAN revenue grew nearly 50% in the second quarter over this year's first quarter, while the country remained the region's largest market with close to 30% of total revenue. Australia represented the second-largest share of LAN market revenue in Q2.

Taiwan overtook South Korea to become Asia--Pacific's third largest LAN market, mostly due to drastically lower revenue in Korea and growing LAN spending among Taiwan's small and medium-sized businesses, says IDC.

On a quarter-to-quarter basis, networking vendors in Asia-Pacific saw shrinking revenue for all LAN product segments, IDC says. In terms of transmission technology, however, sales of asynchronous transfer mode (ATM) and gigabit ethernet posted positive growth.

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