Server market ‘returns to growth’

Gartner claims the worldwide server market grew significantly in the last quarter of 2010.

Server marker growth

After a tough few years for the server market, thanks to the recession hitting refresh budgets, Gartner has claimed things were looking much healthier for hardware.

In the analyst firm's latest quarterly tracker, server shipments rose 6.5 per cent year-on-year globally and worldwide revenue jumped an impressive 16.4 per cent.

These numbers boosted the yearly figures as well, with shipments rising 16.8 per cent for the 12 month period when compared to 2009. Revenues leapt by 13.2 per cent.

"2010 was a year that saw pent-up x86-based server demand produce some significant growth on a worldwide level," said Jeffrey Hewitt, Gartner's research vice president.

"The introduction of new processors from Intel and AMD towards the end of 2009 helped fuel a pretty significant replacement cycle of servers that had been maintained in place during the economic downturn in 2009."

Whilst the Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) region showed good revenue growth of 10.4 per cent, it was notably behind North America's 24.5 per cent, Asia Pacific's 22.4 per cent and Latin America's 12.3 per cent. However, it did exceed Japan, the only region which showed a decline in revenue.

"The fourth quarter rounded off an encouraging year for the server market in EMEA with each quarter seeing positive year to year growth rates for both shipments and revenues," said Adrian O'Connell, research director at Gartner.

"EMEA was particularly badly hit by the downturn in 2009 and, although economic concerns continue across much of the region, the server market has shown good momentum during 2010."

IBM held the top spot for market share, rising to 35.5 per cent and raking in revenues of $5.2 billion (3.2 billion). This helped Big Blue edge further ahead of its nearest rival HP, which had a small drop in market share down to 30.4 per cent. However, it did still grow revenue by 12.8 per cent to $4.4 billion and remained the largest company by shipments.

At the other end of the scale, both Oracle and Fujitsu lost market share down to 5.5 and 3.8 per cent respectively as well as revenue. Fujitsu only fell by 0.5 per cent year on year, giving it revenue of $560 million, but Oracle plummeted 16.2 per cent to $805 million.

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