External Storage Market Stagnates in MEA but Remains Poised for Future Surge, According to IDC
Source: IDC Press Release View: 274 Date: 2013-07-03

The external storage market in the Middle East and Africa (MEA) grew only 2% in the first quarter of 2013, according to the latest data from International Data Corporation (IDC), the premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology, telecom, and consumer technology markets. Referencing its EMEA Quarterly Disk Storage Systems Tracker, the research firm today announced that external storage revenue in MEA expanded slightly year on year in 1Q13 to total $233 million, with terabyte capacity rising some 32% over the same period.

“The modest growth can be attributed to consistent business typical of the first quarter of the year in MEA," says Senior Research Analyst Swapna Subramani with IDC Middle East, Africa, and Turkey. "In the coming quarters, however, strong uptake of external storage systems in MEA is expected owing to large-scale deployments and projects across verticals."

The Gulf Cooperation Council countries excluding the UAE and Saudi Arabia posted growth of 83% in the external storage market in the first quarter of the year, with Bahrain and Qatar registering triple-digit growth, bolstered by projects in the government and finance vertical markets, respectively. Saudi Arabia’s storage market expanded 32% year on year in 1Q13. "This impressive growth was driven by several projects in the kingdom’s telecommunications and government sectors," says Subramani. The external storage market in the UAE recorded 17% growth in revenue compared with 2011, with increased demand evident across various sectors.

North Africa (specifically, Morocco, Algeria, and Tunisia) experienced a continued slump in external storage shipments in 1Q13 as a result of political unrest and spiraling inflation. The South African storage market declined markedly (16%) year on year in the first quarter of 2013 due to a decline in projects for Dell and IBM. Egypt’s external storage market grew significantly owing to projects in the telecommunications and government sectors. ‘‘We remain bullish on the African storage market considering the relatively small installed base and sporadic nature of large-scale enterprise projects.’’ Subramani stated.

From a protocol perspective, ESCON/FICON posted tremendous year-on-year growth, driven by IBM projects in the government sector. Telecom industry investments continued to drive growth for the NAS protocol, while Fibre Channel protocol retained its leading position with the same market share as 1Q12.

Among MEA vendors, EMC continued its dominance in the region, claiming over 45% share of the total disk storage market due on sizeable projects in Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Qatar, and Egypt. Netapp secured second place, with just over 11.5% market share in spite of flat year-on-year revenue. IBM and HP followed closely, with approximately 11% market share each. Hitachi emerged as the bright spot among vendors, achieving triple-digit growth in Q1 2013, driven by projects in South Africa and Turkey.

About the Research

IDC’s EMEA Quarterly Disk Storage Systems Tracker provides timely market information on the disk storage systems market in Western Europe, Central and Eastern Europe, and the Middle East and Africa. Markets can be measured in terms of new storage capacity shipped, factory value, and end-user value of shipments. The tracker provides insight into the impact of market changes, key trends, and the results of vendors’ new product, marketing, and channel activities.

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