Lenovo CEO: The future lies in servers, storage

Summary:Lenovo's CEO says the PC maker will be making strides in servers, storage and the smartphone market in the next year.

Lenovo chief Yang Yuanqing says the firm will be exploiting growth opportunities in servers, storage and the smartphone industry over the next year.

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In an interview with The Wall Street Journal, Yang said that storage and server solutions are an area that Lenovo wants to expand and develop. In addition, if acquisition opportunities appear, the PC maker will take them.

The Lenovo chief believes that there is still a market for PCs, although a number of analysts and research firms disagree. In the latest round of ITC figures, global PC shipments were estimated to have plunged 14 percent in the first three months of 2013, which is the the steepest decline since 1994. Rival firm Gartner measured an 11.2 percent decline quarter over quarter.

PC makers including Hewlett-Packard and Dell have been restructuring to accommodate market shifts as consumers turn to hybrid models or tablets. Lenovo and Apple are still enjoying marginal growth in the PC market, and if Lenovo's chief hopes to hold it steady, he believes evolving rather than discarding the personal computer is key.

"The PC will not die," Yang said. "[but] the future PC is not the past PC."

When questioned about Lenovo's future role in the smartphone industry, the Lenovo chief said that the developing country market can be tapped. Lenovo plans to expand from China and delve deeper into emerging markets before trying its luck in developed countries including the United States. Within a year, the PC hopes to establish itself in the latter.

"The gross margin for smartphones is better than PCs," Yang commented. Keeping this in mind, the company's focus has now moved into research and development, as well as branding in order to try and establish a loyal customer base. Considering China, Yang commented:

"I believe the export and investment growth engine has reached the limit. The potential is domestic consumption, shifting from manufacturing to innovation — these will be the main drivers for the next decade."

Topics: Lenovo, Hardware, Servers, Storage

About

Charlie Osborne, a medical anthropologist who studied at the University of Kent, UK, is a journalist, freelance photographer and former teacher. She has spent years travelling and working across Europe and the Middle East as a teacher, and has been involved in the running of businesses ranging from media and events to B2B sales. Charli... Full Bio

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