LONDON Taiwanese electronics good maker Asustek is gearing up to outsource some of its manufacturing operations over the next three years, according to a report Friday (Sept. 30) on the Financial Times' web-site.
The move by the company, which is one of the world’s largest computer motherboard makers and which expects to have sales this year of $12 billion, is aimed at allowing its emerging branded notebook business to grow without hurting its large contract manufacturing business.
Quoting Jonney Shih, chairman and chief executive of Asustek, the report said some of the company’s ODM customers were concerned the Taiwanese company's sale of notebook computers under its own Asus brand meant it was emerging as a potential competitor.
"We have to acknowledge that brand name conflict or concern will always be there," Mr Shih is quoted as saying. "We are planning to do the same as Acer and Wistron."
Acer, Taiwan's largest brand-name computer seller, spun off its contract manufacturing and design operations into Wistron, a separate company, and took it public in 2003. Since then Acer has focused on marketing rather than innovation.
The Asustek plan seems to be to put the manufacturing operations into one company and create another unit that would focus on R&D and product development. Shih stressed that he viewed the company's engineering capabilities as one of its core strengths. "On the branded business side, we will still emphasise R&D. That is the major difference from Acer."
Besides motherboards and notebooks, Asustek makes graphics cards, wireless local area networks, games consoles, optical drives, cable modems and personal digital assistants.