10 Years After IBM PC Deal Lenovo Keeps on Evolving

 
 
By Jeffrey Burt  |  Posted 2015-05-01
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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    1 - 10 Years After IBM PC Deal Lenovo Keeps on Evolving
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    10 Years After IBM PC Deal Lenovo Keeps on Evolving

    by Jeffrey Burt
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    2 - In the Beginning, There Was Legend
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    In the Beginning, There Was Legend

    The company launched in Beijing in November 1984 with the name Legend, and over the years it grew into China's largest PC vendor. It went public in 1994.
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    3 - Legend Becomes Lenovo
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    Legend Becomes Lenovo

    By 2002, CEO Yang and other executives decided to expand the company internationally, and changed the name to Lenovo to avoid competition with the multitude of businesses internationally that used the name Legend.
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    4 - Lenovo Hits It Big
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    Lenovo Hits It Big

    IBM, which was looking to get out of the quickly commoditizing PC market it helped found two decades earlier, sold the business to Lenovo for $1.25 billion in April 2005. Lenovo immediately became a significant player in the PC industry, which only three years earlier had seen HP's $25 billion acquisition of rival Compaq. A year later it launched its first Lenovo-branded PCs.
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    5 - Lenovo Reaches the PC Summit
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    Lenovo Reaches the PC Summit

    It took awhile—about seven years—but Lenovo in August 2012 moved past HP and Dell to take the top spot on the list of the world's largest PC vendors. HP would briefly take back the crown, but Lenovo later in 2013 again reached the No. 1 spot. In the first quarter, Lenovo had 18.9 percent of the PC market, according to Gartner analysts.
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    6 - Some Other Acquisitions
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    Some Other Acquisitions

    Over the 10 years since the IBM PC deal, Lenovo has made a series of other acquisitions, including Medion (electronics manufacturing) in 2011, CCE in 2012 (electronics) and Stonewear in 2012 (cloud software).
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    7 - Lenovo Partners With NEC
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    Lenovo Partners With NEC

    In 2011, Lenovo and NEC created a joint venture called Lenovo NEC Holdings to produce PCs. The work with NEC continued in 2014, when Lenovo bought more than 3,800 mobile technology patents from NEC.
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    8 - Lenovo and EMC Join Forces
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    Lenovo and EMC Join Forces

    Lenovo and storage giant EMC in 2012 created a joint venture called LenovoEMC to build x86 servers for SMBs. Lenovo also agreed to OEM EMC products. The companies expanded the partnership in 2013 to develop network-attached storage (NAS) solutions for SMBs that had been offered under EMC's Iomega division.
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    9 - Lenovo Reshapes Its Enterprise Business
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    Lenovo Reshapes Its Enterprise Business

    Company officials in January 2014 announced a $2.1 billion deal to buy IBM's x86 server business. The deal closed in September, and overnight Lenovo—which already had a portfolio of ThinkServer x86 systems—became the world's third-largest server maker.
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    10 - Lenovo Also Targets the Mobile Space
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    Lenovo Also Targets the Mobile Space

    Days after announcing its intention to buy IBM's commodity server business, Lenovo said it was buying Motorola Mobility from Google for $2.91 billion. Again, Lenovo already had some smartphones and tablets in the market, but the deal for Motorola made the company the third-largest smartphone maker in the world.
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    11 - Lenovo and Its PC Plus Strategy
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    Lenovo and Its PC Plus Strategy

    Lenovo not only wants to be the largest PC vendor in the world, but also the biggest computer maker, whether it's PCs, tablets, servers or smartphones. The acquisitions of IBM's server businesses and Motorola help accelerate Lenovo's PC Plus ambitions.
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    12 - That's a Lot of ThinkPads
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    That's a Lot of ThinkPads

    In 2015, Lenovo officials said the company has sold 100 million ThinkPad laptops.
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    13 - A Look at the Next 10 Years
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    A Look at the Next 10 Years

    On May 28, Lenovo is hosting Lenovo Tech World in Beijing, its first global tech conference. At the show, company officials will talk about plans for future devices, including smartphones, wearable technologies and smart connected devices, and will demonstrate R&D concept projects.
 

Prior to 2005, Lenovo was China's top PC vendor, but was little known outside the country's borders. It had annual revenue of about $3 billion and was ranked ninth in the global PC industry, with a 2.3 percent market share. That all changed in April of that year, when IBM announced it was selling its massive PC business to Lenovo for $1.25 billion. The deal instantly propelled Lenovo into the worldwide PC scene—eventually it would overtake Hewlett-Packard as the world's top PC vendor—but it also gave the company the financial strength and momentum to rapidly expand its reach into everything from servers (including buying IBM's x86 server business) to mobile devices (such as buying Motorola Mobility from Google), to acquire even more companies, and to partner with industry giants like EMC and NEC. "The acquisition of IBM's PC business transformed Lenovo overnight into a truly global company, changing not only Lenovo but our industry," Lenovo Chairman and CEO Yang Yuanqing said in a statement. "Even more, this acquisition built the foundation for our expansion to new products like smartphones, tablets, servers and now our ecosystem, growth engines fueled by the success of our first big deal." Lenovo officials are celebrating the 10 years since the IBM PC deal. This eWEEK slide show looks at some of the highlights from those 10 years.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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