Acer Inc.

For other uses, see Acer (disambiguation).
Acer Inc.
Native name
Traded as LSE: ACID TWSE: 2353
Industry Computer hardware
Predecessor Multitech International
Founded August 1, 1976 (1976-08-01) (as Multitech)
Founder Stan Shih
Headquarters Xizhi, New Taipei, Taiwan
Area served
Key people
Stan Shih
(Chairman and President)
Products Desktops, laptops, netbooks, servers, smartphones, tablet computers, storage, handhelds, monitors, televisions LED, LCD & Plasma, video projectors, e-business
Revenue NT$263.8 billion (2015)[1]
NT$1.38 billion (2015)[1]
NT$604 million (2015)[1]
Total assets NT$171.7 billion (2015)[1]
Total equity NT$65.8 billion (2015)[1]
Number of employees
7,967 (2015)[2]
Subsidiaries Gateway, Inc.
Packard Bell

Acer Inc. (/ˈsər/ or /ˈæzər/; Chinese: 宏碁股份有限公司; pinyin: Hóngqí Gǔfèn Yǒuxiàn Gōngsī, lit. Hongqi Corporation Ltd.; commonly known as Acer, stylised as acer, or formerly as acer & AceR) is a Taiwanese multinational hardware and electronics corporation specialising in advanced electronics technology and is headquartered in Xizhi, New Taipei City, Taiwan. Acer's products include desktop and laptop PCs, tablet computers, servers, storage devices, Virtual Reality devices, displays, LED, LCD and plasma televisions, smartphones and peripherals. It also provides e-business services to businesses, governments and consumers. In 2015, Acer was the sixth-largest personal computer vendor in the world.[3] In the early 2000s, Acer implemented a new business model, shifting from a manufacturer to a designer, marketer and distributor of products, while performing production processes via contract manufacturers.[4] In addition to its core business, Acer owns the largest franchised computer retail chain, AcerLand.[5]


Acer was founded by Stan Shih (施振榮), his wife Carolyn Yeh, and a group of five others as Multitech in 1976, headquartered in Hsinchu City, Taiwan.

It began with eleven employees and US$25,000 in capital. Initially, it was primarily a distributor of electronic parts and a consultant in the use of microprocessor technologies. It produced the Micro-Professor MPF-I training kit, then two Apple II clones; the Microprofessor II and III before joining the emerging IBM PC compatible market, and becoming a significant PC manufacturer. The company was renamed Acer in 1987.

In 1998, Acer reorganised into five groups: Acer International Service Group, Acer Sertek Service Group, Acer Semiconductor Group, Acer Information Products Group, and Acer Peripherals Group. To dispel complaints from clients that Acer competed with its own products and to alleviate the competitive nature of the branded sales vs. contract manufacturing businesses, In 2000 the company spun off the contract business, renaming it Wistron Corporation. The restructuring resulted in two primary units: brand name sales and contract manufacturing. In 2001 the company got rid of its manufacturing units, Benq and Wistron to focus resources on design and sales.

Acer increased worldwide sales while simultaneously reducing its labor force by identifying and using marketing strategies that best utilized their existing distribution channels. By 2005, Acer employed a scant 7,800 people worldwide. Revenues rose from US$4.9 billion in 2003[6] to US$11.31 billion in 2006.

Acer's North American market share has slipped over the past few years, while in contrast, the company's European market share has risen.[7]

In the mid-2000s years, consumer notebooks have been almost the sole growth drivers for the PC industry, and Acer's exceptionally low overheads and dedication to the channel had made it one of the main beneficiaries of this trend.[8] Acer grew quickly in Europe in part by embracing the use of more traditional distribution channels targeting retail consumers when some rivals were pursuing online sales and business customers. In 2007 Acer bought Gateway in the USA and Packard Bell in Europe and became the Number 3 world provider of computers and number 2 for notebooks, and achieved significant improvement in profitability. Acer has been striving to become the world's largest PC vendor, in the belief that the goal can help it achieve economy of scale and garner higher margin.[9] But such a reliance on the high-volume, low-value PC market made Acer exposed when buying habits changed.

2013 re-organisation

In November 2013 Chairman and CEO J.T. Wang, and President Jim Wong, both resigned due to the company's bad financial performance. Wang had already been reportedly due to leave Acer at year end, to be replaced by Wong. Acer founder Stan Shih has taken over as board chairman and interim president as the company searches for a new candidate to assume the role of presidency. The position of CEO will be eliminated and its responsibilities transferred to the chairman or president, according to Acer in order to improve decision-making efficiency.[10][11][12] On December 23 Acer named Jason Chen, vice president of worldwide sales and marketing at Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing, as its new president and CEO, effective Jan. 1.[13] Entertainment industry executive and former actress Nancy Hu was named CFO and Spokesperson as of May 1, 2014.[14]


In 1988, Acer acquired Counterpoint Computers.

In 1990, Acer acquired Altos Computer Corporation.

In 1997, Acer acquired Texas Instruments notebook computer business.

On 27 August 2007, Acer announced plans to acquire its US-based rival Gateway, Inc. for US$710 million. Acer's chairman, Jen-tang Wang, stated that the acquisition "completes Acer's global footprint, by strengthening our United States presence".[15] Included in this acquisition was the eMachines brand.

In January 2008, Acer announced that it had acquired a controlling interest of 75% of Packard Bell.[16]

In March 2008, Acer acquired: E-TEN. In 2009, Acer acquired 29.9% of Olidata.

In August 2010, Acer and Founder Technology signed a memorandum of mutual understanding to strengthen their long term PC business cooperation.

In July 2011, Acer Inc. bought iGware Inc. for $320 million to try to enter the potentially lucrative cloud market.[17] iGware creates cloud software and infrastructure tools for devices.[18]


29 April 2010[19]


North America

Acer America Headquarters in San Jose

Acer America Corporation, headquartered in San Jose, California, is a member of the Acer Group. Acer's R&D, engineering, manufacturing and marketing operations in the United States and Canada are handled by Acer America. The U.S. headquarters was opened with a staff of three in 1985, as Multitech Electronics USA, in Mountain View, California. In 1986, the U.S. headquarters was moved to San Jose, California. In September 1990, Acer acquired Altos Computer Systems, one of the top manufacturers of multi-user and networked Unix computer systems for commercial markets. In February 1997, Acer acquired Texas Instruments Mobile Computing business, including the award-winning TravelMate and Extensa notebook lines, making Acer the fourth-leading notebook manufacturer in the United States. Acer America's Canadian office, in Mississauga, Ontario, handles repair of Acer, Gateway, and E-Machine Notebooks and Desktop PCs for Eastern Canada. Acer has several facilities in Temple,Texas, including a repair facility, a parts warehouse, and a call centre. In the words of its Chief Executive, J.T. Wang, “Building a brand is very different in the US. The investment at the initial stage has to be very big—otherwise there is almost no impact”.[21]


The Australian subsidiary of Acer is Acer Computer Australia (ACA). The subsidiary was established in 1990, and is currently Australia's third largest personal computer vendor, behind Hewlett-Packard Australia and Dell Australia and New Zealand. Acer Computer Australia has Australia's highest overall market share in notebook PC and tablet PC sales. The company is also Australia's leading PC vendor in government and education markets. Acer Computer Australia has 480 employees as of 2006.


Acer's subsidiary in India is Acer India (Pvt) Limited, and was incorporated as a wholly owned subsidiary of Acer Computer International, Ltd. in 1999. It is a notable vendor in key segments such as education, desktop computers and low profile notebooks for education. The headquarters are in Bangalore, India.


PT Acer Indonesia is a wholly owned subsidiary of Acer Inc and distribute their products through their main distributor PT Dragon Computer & Communication. Acer is currently second largest computer vendor in Indonesia. In Q1 2016, Acer recorded >81% market share in Windows tablet in Indonesia.


From the late 90's to mid-2000's Acer had computer factories in Europe. The business area was the whole EMEA. In the Netherlands under the name of Acer IMS bv there were two factories: Acer laptop factory in Den Bosch and Acer and IBM desktop factory in Tilburg.[22][23] Acer had also facilities in Germany under the name of IMS in Ahrensburg and Hamburg.

The factory in Tilburg produced also - in limited quantities - various Acer server models and even TV set top boxes. In their prime the monthly production could reach over 40.000 desktop PCs per month, well rivalling the main Acer factories in USA and Taiwan.

In 2000, Acer extracted its computer production under the branch of Wistron. Also the Dutch branch Acer IMS bv and the German brand IMS were merged with this. Despite the successful production model developed in the Dutch factories both plants were relocated in 2002. The laptop factory was relocated to mainland China and the desktop factory (after ending the IBM desktop production) was relocated Hungary.[24] Soon the Hungarian factory was also moved to mainland China. Acer is a popular brand in Bulgaria as well.


Acer has shipped some of their notebooks and more recently netbooks, with various Linux operating system distributions including Ubuntu, Linpus, Android (in a dual boot environment with Windows XP), and Google Chrome OS. They have also launched a line of smartphones and tablets with Android.


Acer Inc. logo history


From 1987 until 2001 the company used a red and blue logo with a diamond to the right and the A and R capitalised. On March 8, 2001, a new logo was introduced, in which the Acer "diamond" was abandoned. It was created by Landor Associates. The new logo came out following the spin-off of Acer's contract manufacturing business to focus on its brand business. The latest logo, introduced in 2011, uses a different typeface with more rounded corners and the e no longer stands out. The new logo also uses a different shade of green, which has been dubbed "Acer Green".


Business desktops

Business notebooks


Computer displays

Consumer desktops

Consumer notebooks

Home network solutions

Mobile phones


Netbook Acer Aspire One Ultra-Thin 522



Servers and storage



Other (discontinued devices)


Environmental record

In 2005, Acer published its first environmental report, for which the company used the GRI guidelines.[25] All of Acer’s tier-one suppliers have acquired ISO 14001 certification.[26]

In November 2012, Acer was ranked 4th place out of 15 in Greenpeace’s re-launched Guide to Greener Electronics, with the a score of 5.1 points out of 10. The Guide ranks electronics makers according to their policies and practices to reduce their impact on the climate, produce greener products, and make their operations more sustainable.[27]

Greenpeace criticized the company for not setting out targets to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions as intended in 2010 and for not providing external verification for the GHG emissions it reports for its operations and business travel. It also scored badly on the Products criteria receiving no points on product life cycle while Greenpeace noted that a higher percentage of its products need to meet or exceed Energy Star standards in order for it to score more points.[27]

It received some praise for launching new products which are free from polyvinyl chloride plastic (PVC) and brominated flame retardants (BFRs) and the company informed Greenpeace that the majority of its products will be PVC/BFR free in the near future. Acer also scored well on chemical management for lobbying for restrictions on organo-halogens and was commended for reporting on GHG emissions from its first tier suppliers and investigating its second tier.[27]

In its 2012 report on progress relating to conflict minerals, the Enough Project rated Acer the seventh highest of 24 consumer electronics companies.[28]


Acer sponsored the BAR-Honda Formula One racing team in the year 2000.[29] In 2001, Acer provided sponsorship to the Prost Grand Prix Formula One team, and the team's Ferrari engines were badged as Acers.

Acer sponsored the Ferrari Formula 1 team from 2003 up to 2012 (Official Supplier since 2006) and its Top Sponsor of FC Internazionale – Milano (Inter Milan) Football Club. From 2007 to 2009 Acer has been Official Supplier of FC Barcelona.[30] On 19 March 2007, Acer announced it would sponsor the Factory Fiat Yamaha Team for the 2007 MotoGP World Championship season. Since 2009, Packard Bell (part of Acer Group) has been the sponsor of the Yamaha Factory Racing Team.[31]

Since 2010 Acer has supported Army United F.C., a football team in the Thai Premier League.

Acer has been Worldwide TOP Partners for both the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games and Singapore Youth Olympic Games. Acer was TOP Partner of the London 2012 Summer Olympics.

On July 19, 2011, Acer formed a professional gaming team. Acer is represented in games such as StarCraft 2, TrackMania, and FIFA Soccer.[32]

Formula One engine results

(key) (results in bold indicate pole position) (Races in italics indicate fastest lap)

Year Entrant Chassis Engine Tyres Drivers 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 Points WCC
2001 Prost Acer Prost AP04 Acer 01A (Ferrari) 3.0 V10 M France Jean Alesi 9 9 8 9 10 10 6 5 15 12 11 6 4 9th
Germany Heinz-Harald Frentzen Ret 9 Ret 10 12
Argentina Gastón Mazzacane Ret 12 Ret Ret
Brazil Luciano Burti 11 11 Ret 8 12 10 Ret Ret Ret DNS
Czech Republic Tomáš Enge 12 14 Ret

See also

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Acer Inc..


  1. 1 2 3 4 5 "Annual Report 2015". Asus. Retrieved 30 September 2015.
  2. "Forbes Global 2000 #1131: Acer". Fortune. April 2016. Retrieved 14 July 2016.
  3. "Gartner Says Worldwide PC Shipments Declined 8.3 Percent in Fourth Quarter of 2015". Retrieved 2016-02-17.
  4. Centre for Research on Multinational Corporations, Bart Sleb, 2005
  5. "About Acer – Milestones". Acer. Archived from the original on 8 July 2006. Retrieved 7 July 2007.
  6. "Gianfranco Lanci is appointed President of Acer Inc., effective January 2005" (PDF). Acer. 1 September 2004. Archived from the original (PDF) on 3 April 2007. Retrieved 27 April 2007.
  7. "PC market surged in 2005, will settle in 2006". cnet. 18 January 2006. Archived from the original on 14 July 2014. Retrieved 7 July 2007.
  8. "Acer boss throws in the towel - Corporate - News -". Retrieved 29 June 2016.
  9. "Acer Should Overhaul Its Operation: Stan Shih" Archived 9 May 2013 at the Wayback Machine.
  10. "Acer's president and replacement CEO abruptly resigns as founder takes helm". PC World. Retrieved 21 November 2013.
  11. "Acer's financial woes force exit of CEO, president". Cnet. Retrieved 21 November 2013.
  12. "Struggling PC Maker Acer Brings Back Founder, Without Pay". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 21 November 2013.
  13. "Acer names semiconductor veteran as new CEO". PC World. Retrieved 24 December 2013.
  14. "Acer Appoints Nancy Hu as Chief Financial Officer; Approves Eva Ho's Resignation". Retrieved 22 June 2014.
  15. "Taiwan's Acer to buy PC maker Gateway – World business". MSNBC. 27 August 2007. Archived from the original on 5 May 2009. Retrieved 7 April 2009.
  16. "Acer Buys 75 Percent of Packard Bell making it the 2nd largest computer maker in the world". Washington Post. 31 January 2008. Archived from the original on 17 January 2010. Retrieved 7 April 2009.
  17. "Acer to buy cloud computing firm iGware". Retrieved 29 June 2016.
  18. Don Reisinger, CNET. "Acer to acquire cloud-service provider iGware." 21 July 2011. Retrieved 22 July 2011.
  19. Dan Nystedt (29 April 2010). "Acer to Launch Full Line of Mobile Internet Devices in May". PCWorld. IDG News. Retrieved 17 February 2011.
  20. Tim Culpan (29 April 2010). "Acer Profit Climbs After Overtaking H-P in Laptop Market Share". Businessweek. Bloomberg. Retrieved 17 February 2011.
  21. quoted in Einhorn, 2009
  22. Article in Dutch about moving the last German factory to Tilburg
  23. Article in Dutch about the factory in Tilburg "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 10 November 2013. Retrieved 2013-11-06.
  24. Article in Dutch about the factory closure and move
  25. The Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) is a multi-stakeholder process and independent institution whose mission is to develop and disseminate globally applicable Sustainability Reporting Guidelines.
  26. ISO 14001 was released in 1996 with the intent that companies manage all of the activities, products and services that can significantly impact the environment
  27. 1 2 3 "Guide to Greener Electronics – Greenpeace International". Retrieved 16 November 2011.
  28. Lezhnev, Sasha; Alex Hellmuth (Aug 2012). "Taking Conflict Out of Consumer Gadgets: Company Rankings on Conflict Minerals 2012" (PDF). Enough Project. Retrieved 2012-08-17.
  29. "Sport and technology: the true spirit of excellence". Acer Inc. 6 December 2007. Retrieved 3 June 2014.
  30. About Acer – News Release Archived 19 February 2007 at the Wayback Machine.
  31. "Packard Bell sponsor of Yamaha Factory Racing Team Changeover of sponsorship from Acer". Acer Inc. 2 February 2009. Retrieved 3 June 2014.
  32. Website of Acer e-Sports

External links

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