Boston, MA -- (SBWIRE) -- 01/08/2014 -- Lebanon's IT market is forecast to be a regional outperformer over the medium term as strong economic growth underpins market expansion. The total size of the Lebanese IT market in 2014 is forecast to reach LBP595.4bn, an increase of 7.4% from 2013 and we forecast strong spending growth over the medium term. Several factors will drive market expansion, including rising incomes, declining device prices, improvements to telecoms infrastructure and modernisation by enterprises and the public sector. However, IT development in Lebanon is subject to significant uncertainty as a result of security issues, which could be destabilising depending on the conflict in Syria. Further, we identify the vulnerabilities of the Lebanese IT industry to cyber security threats, which could undermine confidence.
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Headline Expenditure Projections
- Computer Hardware Sales: LBP366.2bn in 2014 to LBP481.2bn in 2017, +8.8% CAGR in local currency terms. Tablet sales are booming, supporting rapid growth in total PC units. However, with consumers increasingly opting for cheaper Android tablets, increases in market value will fail to keep pace with unit growth.
- Software Sales: LBP53.9bn in 2014 to LBP77.1bn in 2017, +12.4% CAGR in local currency terms. There is potential for strong growth in the software market, but piracy remains a major drag on market growth.
- IT Services Sales: LBP175.4bn in 2014 to LBP239.7bn in 2017, +10.2% CAGR in local currency terms. IT services will underperform software in the short term, but as telecoms infrastructure improves we expect outsourcing and cloud services to drive growth higher.
Key Trends And Developments
The poor quality and coverage of telecoms infrastructure, as well as high cost, has been a bottleneck on the development of the IT market in recent years. However, the situation is improving, with operators launching 4G LTE services in 2013, as well as increased international bandwidth lowering the cost of services. This should facilitate wider roll-out of networks and bring down cost to end-users. BMI believes this will be a positive development for the IT market, boosting device demand in the retail market, as well as opening up the potential of the cloud computing market and accelerating the development of Lebanon as an outsourcing destination.
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