Taiwanese device maker Acer is looking for an OEM partner in Indonesia to manufacture smartphones to avoid the country’s high import duties.
The company will decide on a partner later this year, DigiTimes reported.
The country’s smartphone market expanded 55 per cent in Q1 compared to a year ago and now accounts for just over half of total handset shipments, according to Counterpoint Research.
Smartphone growth is forecast to expand rapidly over the next few years as the country moves away from 2G network technology. According to GSMA Intelligence, 63 per cent of the country’s 318 million mobile connections (Q2 figures) are on 2G, compared to 36 percent on 3G. With some operators only launching 4G services earlier this year, the country has 2.07 million LTE connections.
Domestic manufacturing accounted for 35 per cent of the country’s smartphone market during Q1, and local production is forecast to increase due to new regulations.
A draft regulation mandating local sourcing for 4G phone manufacturing would pose a challenge to foreign brands since the country’s device component ecosystem is still not mature, Counterpoint Research said.
Acer’s Indonesian efforts come as the PC, tablet and smartphone vendor admitted it is open to being acquired, but noted a buyer would have to “pay a heavy price”, Reuters reported.
The comment by Acer founder Stan Shih yesterday follows a sharp drop in its share price since April after a poor H1 performance. It posted a TWD2.89 billion ($90 million) loss in H1. Sales fell 33 per cent in July.
It had set a target to ship six million smartphones this year, but in H1 only shipped 1.8 million units, putting it under pressure to speed up shipments in the second half, DigiTimes said.