Lenovo, Huawei biggest winners for Q1 cloud infrastructure sales

Lenovo moves ahead of Cisco for quarterly sales for the first time

The Lenovo sign in red above its offices

Cloud infrastructure spend for the first financial quarter of the year increased by 12.5% year-on-year, as businesses upped their spend on servers and other cloud-related hardware.

Dell and HPE retained first and second place with growth of 16.9% and 11.2%, respectively, but the biggest yearly increases belonged to Lenovo (38.2%) and Huawei (37.9%), according to IDC's Worldwide Quarterly Enterprise Infrastructure Tracker.

The increase saw Lenovo move from the fifth-largest vendor for sales in Q1 of 2020 to third-largest at the start of 2021, moving ahead of Cisco for the first time, which also lost market share to Huawei.

The Chinese firm was something of a surprise package for 2021 as it failed to feature in any of IDC's quarterly reports for 2020, but earned revenues of $460 million in early 2021. In comparison, Cisco brought in just $321 million in the same period, while both were topped by Lenovo, which increased its market share by 1.3%, raking in $994 million.

It's another major hardware win for Lenovo, following a Canalys report that ranked the firm as the number one laptop and Chromebook vendor for 2020. For Huawei, it's more of a consolation given the struggles the firm has had with its consumer segments and 5G infrastructure business.

For the wider market, spending on compute and storage infrastructure products, including dedicated and shared environments, topped $15.1 billion and, according to IDC, this is a sign of the "lasting impact" the pandemic has had on IT infrastructure.

With more and more businesses now increasingly reliant on cloud platforms for commercial, educational, and social applications, as well as helping to underpin digital transformations, IDC is predicting a strong end to the year for infrastructure spending.

"With healthy first quarter results and the overall infrastructure market beginning to recover from the pandemic, IDC is forecasting cloud infrastructure spending to grow 12.9% to $74.6 billion for 2021, while non-cloud infrastructure is expected to grow 2.7% to $58.5 billion after two years of declines," the firm said in its Q1 report.

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