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Jun 8, 2009

Intel: Worst is over

Intel Corp, the world’s biggest chipmaker, said the slump in the technology industry “has touched bottom.”

“We see opportunity of seasonal growth in the second half,” said Christian Morales, head of Intel’s Europe, Middle East and Africa business, in an interview in St Petersburg, Russia, today.

Intel supplies processors for about 80 percent of the world's personal computers. That makes its orders a gauge of the overall industry's health. Information technology spending is expected to drop 9 percent this year, according to a report by Goldman Sachs & Co.

“We saw a major correction of inventory levels around the world in the first quarter,” Morales said. “At the end of the quarter inventories were in line with the business environment.”

Russia’s information, communications and technology industry has had a “major downsizing” in the first quarter, the executive said. “There is an opportunity for a recovery in Russia this year, with the desire of Russian people to access Internet and to acquire best available technology.”

Russia growth
Russia could become Europe's largest information technology market in the next three to four years, helped by the government’s investment in technological infrastructure and educational programs, according to Morales.

The country makes up “a small part” of Intel’s total sales, although it’s “very strategic” for the company because of its “major contribution in software development,” he said. Intel has more than 1,000 engineers in Russia, he added.

“The downsizing of the market is always challenging,” Morales said. “The Russian government is putting out stimulus packages and we hope that part of it will be dedicated to information technologies, which is positive.”

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