Acer Australia boss Charles Chung to depart

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Acer Australia boss Charles Chung to depart

Acer Australia managing director Charles Chung has announced his retirement from the company after more than 15 years.

Sales director Darren Simmons will step up to the top job in Australia on 10 February.

According to a statement, Chung has faced health issues since 2011, and underwent surgery in 2012. He "requested to be relinquished of his role to concentrate on his health recovery and family".

Simmons has been with the computer manufacturer for more than 13 years, and currently oversees sales for Australia and New Zealand.

"On behalf of myself and all at Acer Australia & New Zealand, we wish Charles a happy and well-deserved retirement," said Simmons.

"Over the last nine months, Acer Australia has been undergoing restructuring activities, business realignments and changes to the internal teams to adapt to the changing market and promote further growth with a strong focus on the channel. With these changes in place the company is in a strong position."

Acer has battled with some rough years and less than favourable results.

According to the most recent financial results for Acer Computer Australia Pty Ltd lodged with ASIC, the company's local revenue fell dramatically, down from $483.7 million in the 12 months to December 2011 to $296 million for the 2012 calendar year – a fall of 38.8 percent.

Well-placed sources have told CRN that Acer Australia's revenues have fallen even further since then.

Profits also collapsed. In 2011, Acer Australia reported a $965,000 profit; in 2012, it sunk to a $5.8 million loss.

Globally, things haven’t been much better; the fall in PC sales have hit Acer hard.

In its recent fourth-quarter results, the Taiwanese PC vendor reported a net loss of T$7.6 billion ($285 million), compared with expectations of a T$3.69 billion ($138.6 million) loss.

The company had posted a worse-than-expected net loss of T$13.12 billion in the third quarter and a T$3.37 billion loss in the same quarter of 2012. It has reported losses or meager profit at best every quarter for almost three years, reported Reuters.

In early January, Acer wrote off losses of T$1.3 billion (US$48.6 million) in raw materials inventory and other costs.

In a statement, the company said: "Acer acknowledges missteps in the past on resource allocation, and the overexpectation of ultrabooks and notebooks with touch panel. Although the products were leading in design they did not accurately fulfill market needs."

The change of management in Australia echoes a top-level overhaul last November, when company founder Stan Shih returned to Acer as chairman, having retired in 2004.

The PC maker then appointed Jason Chen as its new chief executive and president on 1 January.

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