Spending on PCs and peripherals to see the strongest growth
Worldwide SMB spending on information technology is expected to increase by 5.5% over the 2010-2014 forecast period, according to market research firm IDC.
IDC forecasts that the worldwide SMB IT spending will grow to nearly $629.3bn in 2014. Despite the $17.4bn spending increase expected in 2010, SMB IT spending levels will not return to 2008 levels until 2011.
Ray Boggs, vice president of small/medium business and home office research at IDC, said: The downturn had a devastating impact on SMBs worldwide. Moving forward, small businesses will not follow the past pattern and return to pre-recessions spending levels more quickly than midsize firms. Instead, SMBs of all sizes will remain cautious with their IT spending over the next several years.
The SMB spending recovery is expected to vary by the technology type, although the spending declines have affected all categories of hardware, software and services. IDC expects SMB spending on PCs and peripherals to experience the strongest growth, followed closely by packaged software outlays, while systems and storage spending will see the slowest growth.
According to IDC, the SMB spending growth will be strongest in Central and Eastern Europe, the Middle East and Africa. The developing markets of Asia/Pacific and Latin America will also experience growth of more than 7% throughout the forecast period. SMB spending growth in developed regions will be roughly 3-4%.
North America, Western Europe, and Japan collectively represent about 70% of worldwide IT spending by SMBs.
Boggs added: The diversity of the SMB market will continue to be one of its hallmarks. Given that the developed regions account for the largest share of SMB spending, and the developing regions represent the greatest opportunity for market growth, the global market really becomes a ‘tale of two regions.’ To succeed, technology providers need to develop separate strategies that address the distinct needs of companies in each of these settings.