Venezuela's IT market stayed on its falling trend last year with a 12% drop compared to 2009 in investments of nearly 13bn bolívares (US$3.02bn), online news source Computerworld Venezuela reported, citing a study by consultancy IDC.
IDC attributed the results mainly to currency depreciation and tight foreign exchange laws. But after a depressed first quarter, the market managed to overcome these barriers, achieving 95% of all investments programmed for the year during the second half of 2010 alone.
This overall scenario caused a change in supplier and consumer strategies, reflected for example in a 12% increase in outsourcing demand versus 2009.
In the market, hardware and software were the most affected sectors, falling 17% and 15%, respectively.
The market saw more than 1mn PC units sold in 2010, down 16% and a 39% drop in terms of value. Desktops also saw a 35% decline in units, while notebooks dove 30%. However, netbooks grew 12%, helped by government-imported Classmate PCs.
The servers market also fell 5% in units, but showed 2% improvement in value compared to 2009. Equipment under US$25,000 dropped 3% in units but increased 25% in value due to virtualization projects, cloud computing and outsourcing demand, while equipment over US$25,000 plunged 46% in units, but showed a 2% growth in value.
The consultancy also highlighted a 30% decline in value in the networking market, including LAN/switches, routers, WLAN, security and IP solutions. In the meantime, security appliances plummeted 54%.
Regarding storage, 2010 levels recovered more than 13% after a 42% fall in 2009, largely due to consolidation and virtualization among companies. The largest investments came from oil and public banking verticals.
As a presidential election nears, IDC forecasts improvements in the country's currency rates for this year, benefiting the ICT industry and allowing the development of projects started in 2009 but postponed until 2010 and 2011.
From 2010 on, the consultancy sees an increasing need for integrating hardware, software and services solutions, as well as higher cloud computing and data center services adoption to avoid political and economic impacts, among others.
Social networks will be included in new business solution portfolios, beginning to break through the business sector barrier.