Acer reports Q4 loss, executives agree to salary cut

The company wrote off NT$1.3 billion ($US43 million) related to raw materials inventory and other costs

Acer reported another net loss at NT$7.6 billion ($US251 million) for the fourth quarter, as senior executives at the struggling PC maker agreed to a 30 per cent cut to their salaries.

It's the third consecutive quarter for which Acer has reported a net loss, as the PC market continues to shrink. During the fourth quarter, the company's revenue reached NT$86.7 billion, down from NT$101.5 billion a year earlier.

Part of the fourth quarter net loss was due to a write-off of NT$1.3 billion related to raw materials inventory and other costs, Acer said.

The Taiwanese PC maker, which once rode high on low-price notebook sales, has routinely reported weak earnings in recent years. More consumers are buying smartphones and tablets, taking demand away from consumer PCs, Acer's primary business.

Acer has tried to respond with low-priced tablets, smartphones, and laptops with thin and light designs known as ultrabooks, but competition in mobile devices remains stiff. At the same time, ultrabooks and Microsoft's Windows 8 OS have failed to boost PC sales.

Acer's previous CEO resigned in November. Then last month, the PC maker named Jason Chen, a former executive with the contract chip maker Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. as its new president and CEO to revive the business.

The company still hasn't issued too many details on how it intends to turn its fortunes around. So far, the PC maker has said it plans to develop personalized cloud products that will work on its notebooks, tablets, and smartphones. Through the software, users will be able to more easily store and share content between devices, it said.

On Friday, Acer said it made missteps in investing too much in the notebook business, adding that it had originally expected ultrabooks and laptops built with touch screens would perform well in the market.

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