Smartening up

Worldwide smartphone sales in Q4 2011 jumped 47%, reaching 149 million units.

Read time 4min 30sec

The international ICT world was very quiet last week, with the possible tie-up between Vodafone and Cable & Wireless Worldwide being one of the main stories.

At home, the ongoing Telkom/Competition Tribunal hearings stole much of the local ICT media space.

Key local news

Groupon bought Hyperpublic, a location-based technology start-up.

Paul Booth, MD, Global Research Partners.

* Good interim figures from Metrofile, with revenue up 14.8% and profit up 23.3%.
* An interim loss from Telemasters, with revenue also down 35%.
* A positive trading update from Silverbridge.
* A negative trading update from Mustek.
* Datatec acquired PT Netpoleon, an Indonesian value-added distributor of IT security, networking and convergence solutions, and a provider of managed and training services.
* Raystream, a provider of HD video compression technology, opened a regional office in SA.
* The appointment of AxizWorkgroup as the SA distributor for Mindjet, a collaborative work management provider.
* The appointment of Naas Jordaan as managing director of MIP Holdings.
* The retirement of Konni Hoferichter as managing director of LaserCom.

Key African news

* The additional EUR1.5 billion investment by France Telecom in Mobinil (Egypt), raising its stake to 95%, but with Orascom still retaining a 5% stake.
* The 50% investment by Orascom Technology Ventures (Egypt) in Dare'n'Deal, an e-commerce Web site.
* Internet World Stats found that African Internet users now top 139 million.
* Qualcomm opened an East African regional office in Nairobi.
* The appointment of SecureData as the Sub-Saharan Africa distributor for Lumension, a provider of endpoint management and security.

Key international news

* The acquisition by Garmin of Interphase, a provider of marine phased array scanning technology.
* Groupon bought Hyperpublic, a location-based technology start-up.
* Opera Software purchased Mobile Theory and 4th Screen Advertising, two mobile advertising agencies.
* Rackspace acquired SharePoint911, a Microsoft SharePoint consultancy.
* SanDisk bought FlashSoft, a flash memory maker.
* The $108 million private equity investment by a group led by General Atlantic in Mu Sigma, one of the world's largest data analytics companies.
* The $374.4 million investment by Telenor in VimpelCom, raising its stake to 36.36%.
* Excellent quarterly results from Baidu.
* Very good quarterly figures from Comcast.
* Good quarterly numbers from Capgemini.
* Satisfactory quarterly results from Diebold (back in the black).
* Mediocre quarterly results from Acer, Applied Materials, CenturyLink and Nvidia.
* Mixed quarterly figures from Equinix, with revenue up but profit down; NetApp, with revenue up but profit down; Singapore Telecoms, with revenue up but profit down; and Trend Micro, with revenue down but profit up.
* Quarterly losses from Alvarion, Aruba Networks, Clearwire, MEMC Electronic Materials, RealNetworks and Zynga.
* The appointments of Vinny Smith as CEO of Quest Software; and Chey Tae-won as co-CEO of Hynix Semiconductor following SK Telecom's $3 billion (21.05%) investment in that company.
* The resignation of Doug Garn, CEO of Quest Software (stays on as vice-chairman).
* A planned 2 March IPO on the NYSE from Yelp, an online review service.
* A satisfactory IPO on Nasdaq by Synacor, a Web consulting and designing services company.

Look out for:

* International:
* The outcome of the talks between Vodafone and Cable & Wireless Worldwide.
* The spin-off by Samsung of its LCD display screen division.
* South Africa:
* The outcome of the Competition Tribunal's findings on the fine for Telkom, which could be as much as R4.5 billion.

Research results and predictions

* According to Analysys Mason, retail telecoms revenue in sub-Saharan Africa will see a CAGR of 10% between 2010 and 2016.
* Worldwide smartphone sales in Q4 2011 reached 149 million units, up 47% over Q4 2010, with Samsung closing the gap on Nokia, which is still the market leader, says Gartner. Apple climbed to number two, while RIM slipped to number six.
* According to IDC, the hardcopy peripherals market declined 4.5% in Q4 2011 to shipments of 34.9 million units.

Stock market changes

* JSE All share index: Up 0.6%
* Nasdaq: Up 1.6% (highest weekend close for over 10 years)
* Top SA share movements: AdaptIT (-8.6%), Ansys (+15.9%), Huge Group (+37.5%), Ideco (+10%), Ifca Technologies (-14.3%), MICROmega (+19.4%), PBT (+17.6%), Poynting Antennas (+12.9%), Stella Vista (+66.7%) and Zaptronix (-33.3%)

Final word

IDC recently published its latest figures for the size of the local market and its growth prospects for the next few years. A summary of these follows:

* 2012 forecast
* Total ICT market R227 billion, up 5.2% from 2011; this includes telecom services of R128.8 billion.
* Total IT market R98.2 billion, with IT services making up 40% of this number and hardware 44%.

* 2013 forecast
* Total ICT market up 4.4% from 2012.
* Total IT market up 6.3% from 2012.

* 2014 forecast
* Total ICT market up 3.5% from 2013.
* Total IT market up 6.4% from 2013.

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